Thursday, June 25, 2009

Nets trade Carter in "salary dump"; all three stars from time of 2006 approval are gone

The last of the three Nets stars (circa 2006 Atlantic Yards approval) is now gone, as Vince Carter has been traded to the Orlando Magic in which Star-Ledger writer Dave D'Alessandro calls "another salary dump," thus saving the team his $16 million salary next year and $17.5 million a year later

That sum just happens to be 80% of the payment Forest City Ratner would make for the portion of the Vanderbilt Yard it needs for the arena block. (The Nets' principal owner is Bruce Ratner, not FCR.) 

Two new players the Nets got will earn $11 million-plus in the final seasons of their contracts. (The Nets also traded Ryan Anderson, whose contract offsets the third player, Courtney Lee.) So the total savings could be more than $20 million.

But it's not about land. The ultimate goal is to save cap space for 2010, when the Nets, like many other teams, will be shopping for big-name free agents.

(At right, a page from the new defunct Atlantic Yards site featuring Carter; a year ago, that page was edited to erase the just-traded Richard Jefferson.)

Golden's rhetoric

As I wrote in February, one of the more overblown pieces of rhetoric during the Atlantic Yards approval process came from State Sen. Marty Golden, an ethically-challenged Bay Ridge Republican.

Upon the legislature's approval of $100 million in subsidies to the project, Golden declared, according to a 4/14/06 Courier-Life article:
“It is the chance of a lifetime to have stars such as Jason Kidd, Vince Carter, Richard Jefferson and all the others have their home court based in Brooklyn. I am proud to have championed these efforts for the future of Kings County,” said Golden. 
(Emphasis added)

Trading away the stars

Well, Kidd's gone.

So is Jefferson.

And now Carter is gone, too. This isn't Dodgerland anymore. It's not about continuity; it's about money.

(New York Sun photo of Carter and Kidd at8/23/06 press conference before the public hearing on the AY Draft Environmental Statement.)

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