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What is a sign-and-trade deal and how did it help Klay Thompson move to the Mavericks?

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The NBA’s complex salary cap and free agency rules make transactions like the sign-and-trade deal an essential tool for teams looking to manage their rosters effectively.

A sign-and-trade deal occurs when an NBA team re-signs one of its free agents and then immediately trades that player to another team. This maneuver allows the original team to get value for a player who might otherwise leave for nothing, while the acquiring team can circumvent certain salary cap restriction.

How does a sign-and-trade deal looks like?

Re-signing the Player: The player’s current team signs him to a new contract.

Immediate Trade: The player is then traded to another team, often in exchange for other players, draft picks, or financial considerations.

Salary Cap Management: This deal can help teams manage their salary cap more effectively, allowing the receiving team to acquire a player without having to create immediate cap space.

The Klay Thompson deal and how the sign-and-trade helped

Agreement with the Mavericks: Klay Thompson, a sharpshooting guard, agreed to sign a three-year, $50 million contract with the Mavericks. This contract was part of a multi-team sign-and-trade involving the Golden State Warriors and the Charlotte Hornets.

Trade Details: The Mavericks sent two second-round draft picks to the Warriors to complete the sign-and-trade. In return, the Warriors facilitated Thompson’s move to Dallas. The Hornets were also involved in the deal, receiving shooting guard Josh Green from the Mavericks.

Dallas made a standout playoff run in 2024, reaching their first NBA Finals since 2011. Adding Thompson aims to diversify their offensive scheme, especially in terms of 3-point shooting. Thompson’s scoring ability from inside, midrange, and beyond the arc will enhance the Mavericks’ backcourt alongside Luka Doncic and Kyrie Irving

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