USA Today is reporting that at least three teams including the Hawks, and Rockets were fined by the NBA for tampering.
The person who reported the fines to USA Today, spoke on the condition of anonymity because the fines haven’t been made public.
The Hawks sent a statement to USA TODAY Sports saying: “We fully understand and respect the NBA’s decision.”
The NBA sent out this memo.
” The teams were fined because “The conduct at issue involved statements by a team employee to the media, a team email to prospective season ticket purchasers, and articles posted online on a team website, each related to players who are currently under contract to other teams but who will become free agents this summer.”
Most believe part of the memo refers to a recent letter sent by a Hawks employee to season ticket holders that mentions Clippers guard Chris Paul and Lakers center Dwight Howard as possible signees.
The definition of tampering also was provided in the memo, and reads out like this.
“Article 35A of the NBA Constitution states that it’s a violation of the league’s anti-tampering rule for any person affiliated with an NBA team to directly or indirectly (i) entice, induce, or persuade, or attempt to entice, induce or persuade, any player, coach, GM or other person under contract to any other NBA team to enter into negotiations for or relating to that person’s services or to negotiate or contract for such services, or (ii) otherwise interfere with the employment relationship between that employee and the other NBA team.”