So, Phil, how do you really feel about Cleveland's recent deal involving forward Antawn Jamison and center Zydrunas Ilgauskas?
With Ilgauskas all but certain to return to the Cavaliers after having his contract bought out earlier this week by Washington, FanHouse asked the Lakers coach after Friday's shootaround his thoughts on the situation.
Cleveland on Feb. 17 had sent Ilgauskas to Washington in a three-team deal, landing Jamison, a two-time All-Star. It now looks as if the Cavaliers will be getting Ilgauskas back after the NBA-required 30-day waiting period, which would place his return around March 20.
"It's something that's going to have to be addressed in the next (collective bargaining agreement),'' Jackson said of the rule in its current form. "It's a sham of sorts to make that kind of trade. You're not really trading a player. You're just trading a money situation. It's a sham, and I think it's a disrespect for the league and the players to be involved in this type of a thing.''
Jackson said perhaps the rule should be changed to make it a waiting period of multiple months before a player could return to the team that dealt him.
"You only have a rule about not being able to trade the player after you signed him in free agency until mid-December after you signed him in August,'' Jackson said of the rule that calls for a player signed as a free agent during the offseason not being eligible to be traded until Dec. 15 or 90 days, whichever is later. "Maybe something like that could be instituted where it's two or three months ... if it's the same team. Otherwise, it's just kind of charades.''
I suggested to Jackson that perhaps a new rule could be that a player traded in a situation such as Ilgauskas' could return to the team in the current timeframe but wouldn't be eligible for the playoffs.
"That's one way of doing it,'' Jackson said. "That's a possibility.''
Jackson has a keen interest in Cleveland's doings since the Lakers and Cavaliers are the favorites to meet in the NBA Finals. And there's no doubt in Jackson's mind the 7-foot-3 Ilgauskas will be returning to the Cavaliers.
"They got a real good player and [have] not lost a thing,'' Jackson said.
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