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Skepticism Emerges From NBA’s New Tampering Guidelines

The NBA is attempting to curb less-than-legal free agent practices, but the new rules have been met with skepticism.

2019 NBA Finals - Golden State Warriors v Toronto Raptors Photo by Garrett Ellwood/NBAE via Getty Images

The NBA unveiled a re-tooled and aggressive approach to free agency in attempt to mitigate the early negotiations that have become a regular occurrence. From increased fines to random audits, the league’s board of governors is set to change the summer landscape.

In theory, the new rules are step in the right direction. Unsurprisingly, the new regulations have been met with skepticism. In a story from ESPN’s Adrian Wojnarowski and Zach Lowe, it was revealed that several team officials have reservations about the new guidelines. Among those concerns: the new audit process.

In conversations with numerous league officials, team owners, general managers and agents, some uncertainty was expressed about the means the NBA might use to investigate alleged rules violations. Atop those concerns for team officials is what league sources insist was commissioner Adam Silver’s toughest decision in bringing new rules to a vote: an annual, random auditing of five teams’ communications with rival front offices and player agents.

ESPN’s story also highlighted the predicament that the voting process presents to NBA teams.

Small-market teams, fearing the free-agency allure of big-city rivals, might line up Friday to support the league’s proposal -- as well as teams embittered by recent free-agency defections. Those who voted against the new measures would have risked the perception that they condone cheating, even if other reasons colored their decision.

You can read the full story from Wojnarowski and Lowe at ESPN.