Thursday, July 30, 2009

Is The Ball In Obama’s Court? Health Care Bill May Affect 2010 NBA Drafts

Rising taxes for the wealthy combined with the expiration of the Bush tax cuts may affect the 2010 NBA more than some States would like to admit. For example, some teams like the Chicago Bulls may have more trouble drafting popular free agents like Dwayne Wade, due to much higher state income taxes. Checkout the story from below.

Could, in the end, the biggest barrier to the Bulls attracting a major free agent next summer like Dwyane Wade be the health care legislation now being debated in Washington?

Let’s face it. The prize next summer is Wade. LeBron James seems almost certain to remain in Cleveland given the weak state of the New York Knicks’ roster and uncertainty regarding the moving plans of the New Jersey Nets, supposedly James’ two speculated destinations. And do you really want to give a maximum contract to Chris Bosh, who doesn’t seem to impact winning very much? It seemed to me Bosh's Toronto had a much better roster last season than Wade’s in Miami and yet the Heat was far better than the Raptors. And the reason why Wade could well move is that roster. There’s no way, given how much Wade had to do last season that he could hold up carrying a team like that. It’s why you figure Miami is so desperate to make a major move now and why Wade, seemingly, has challenged them to do so.

Michael Beasley was at the USA Basketball mini-camp in Las Vegas Saturday hanging out in the media and family area after the scrimmage. He was the most obvious omission among the young players invited to try out for the Olympic team. Beasley couldn’t have been more gracious after the game staying around and signing autographs for everyone who asked. But he also was wearing his shorts so low you got way too much of a view of his underwear as he walked away. I know it was Vegas, but leave something to imagination. That streak of insouciance coupled with extreme immaturity suggests Miami has work to do with its roster to appease Wade.

And now comes the health care legislation, and you wonder what that has to do with anything?

The answer is taxes. The closest anyone seems to a plan now to pay for the changes is to tax the so-called rich. That would include just about every player in the NBA. I know we’re not supposed to feel sorry for rich people and assume they have so much that giving up more doesn’t matter. It does, just as comfortable people in the middle class with two cars and a nice health club membership don’t want to pay more taxes, either, even though they can afford to.

So I contacted a tax expert in Chicago, Noel Wilner, president of CBIZ MHM, an accounting and tax advisory company, and asked him to do some calculations. The assumption was single tax payer, the 2011 tax rates when the presumed five percent health care surtax would go into effect with the higher rates that year, salaries of $5.5 million, which is about the NBA average, and $17 million, which would be a high earner like Wade and no deductions.

Continue reading here…

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