Did an NBA General Manager make the idiotic mistake of using Twitter to recruit a player... illegally?
Houston Rockets GM Daryl Morey tweeted the above at 11:50 pm ET on Saturday, June 30. The account is verified as being Morey's.
As you can see in the tweet, Morey makes his intentions for the beginning of free agency clear: he wants to sign Chicago Bulls center Omer Asik.
But did Morey cross the line with this tweet?
What's important here is the time of the tweet.
Asik is set to become an unrestricted free agent... at midnight. According to the Collective Bargaining Agreement agreed on by the owners and Players Association:
an Unrestricted Free Agent is free at any time beginning on the first day of the Moratorium Period to negotiate, and free at any time after the last day of the Moratorium Period to enter into, a Player Contract with any Team.
The “Moratorium Period” begins on July 1.
Here's the definition of tampering, from the CBA:
Tampering is when a player or team directly or indirectly entices, induces or persuades anybody (player, general manager, etc.) who is under contract with another team in order to negotiate for their services.
Usually, GMs are smart enough to not talk about a specific player before the clock reaches the appropriate hour. But in this case, you can clearly see that Morey was 10 minutes early with his request for fans of the Rockets to tell Asik how they felt.
It will be interesting to see if the NBA sees the time on Morey's tweet and penalizes the Rockets for him not knowing how to wait a few minutes.