Throughout the past couple of years, the NBA has had some drastic changes, whether it is regarding new teams or rules. This year’s NBA finals was rather quick with an expected outcome, as the Cavaliers were swept by a Warriors “superteam”.
Although this occurred, Free Agency is when NBA teams make comebacks. NBA Free Agency is always a fun time of the year. It started on July 1st, and there have already been major headlines occurring: Lebron signing with my hometown Los Angeles Lakers, Paul George and Chris Paul resigning with their respective teams, and other multi-year deals throughout the league. These NBA players have worked extremely hard to be where they are, and their jobs not only consist of them making huge salaries but also opportunities to pursue careers they are passionate and happy with.
During NBA Free Agency, the players have critical choices to make that will decide their futures. They have to be strategic and deliberate pros and cons of each decision they make, choosing teams they will play for during the following year(s).
The players in NBA Free Agency are similar to professionals in their careers; how?
- There are superstars with multiple offers from NBA teams. This is similar to job-seekers with multiple offers from top companies due to their hard work and skills, as they take weeks to deliberate on which offer would be the best for their short and long-term goals.
- There are NBA players who are signed to two-way contracts, switching from the G-League to the NBA. This is similar to professionals who have multiple jobs, whether it is a side profession or volunteer position.
- There are NBA players who sign veteran’s minimum or the mid-level exception deals for a year. This is similar to professionals who take on contracts for a year in hopes of utilizing the experience to leverage themselves in the following year.
As we can tell, NBA players are very similar to the type of professionals in different career fields. However, how does NBA Free Agency compare to seeking employment, and why should we pay attention to it?
- Like NBA players, job-seekers with multiple offers have to make decisions: These decisions that NBA players make are strategic; some are chasing championships and will take a pay cut, some want to play in their hometown city and be a superstar, or they want to sign a max salary deal. Job-seekers with multiple offers have to think similarly: are they accepting an offer with a company that pays more, an offer with a company that has enjoyable work, or an offer with a company that correlates with their long-term goals? (Or an offer with all 3?)
- The Rumor Mill: The NBA Rumor Mill is consistently going on; there are always conspiracies on where an NBA player is taking their talents to, whether it is different sources or reporters giving their own opinions. Despite the rumors, NBA players keep their composure and make decisions based on what they want. This is the same with employment seekers; sometimes, there will be rumors that a person might be leaving their respective company or might feel pressure from others to choose a specific profession. At the end of the day, it is that person’s choice to choose what best fits their career aspirations and to keep their focus to make that decision.
- To be the best, join the best: This is also known as “if you can’t beat them, join them”. Throughout the years, we have NBA superstars creating “Superteams”; we had Kevin Durant joining a superstar packed Warriors team and the Celtics Big 3 with Paul Pierce, Kevin Garnett, and Ray Allen teaming up to win a championship. Sometimes, to be the best version of yourself and to meet your expectations, you have to learn and join the best. This is the same with employment; we want to join the best companies, and if there are opportunities that exceed what we are currently doing, we are willing to take that opportunity for growth in skills and development.
- Sometimes, change is good: NBA players have to make tough choices during Free Agency, especially if they have been loyal to a team or if it is away from family and friends. This is the same in our careers; sometimes, we have to sacrifice and make decisions that may be difficult due to factors including location and being uncomfortable, but it will help with long-term goals and ambitions.
- Sell the vision: When recruiting during Free Agency, NBA teams need to sell their vision of the future, whether it is competing for a championship or rebuilding to become a powerhouse and contender. This is the same for companies recruiting candidates for positions; companies must show the candidate their visions for both their company and what they envision the candidate will be able to achieve throughout their careers.
Let’s enjoy seeing the NBA Free Agency extravaganza that will be occurring throughout this month. Decisions made by NBA players can make or break teams, setting them up as a title contender or back to a lottery-projected team. We should all strive to be “superstars” in our respective fields because it not only gives us options down the road but also helps us develop and shape our skills. Strive to be the best like Lebron James, considered the Greatest of All Time, and everything will follow, just like loyal fans but also bandwagoners do.
Los Angeles is ready for you, King LAbron.