Whether it is through a new rule or a clause in their contract, there are 19 NBA players who have the ability to veto trades they are involved in. Three of these players are on the Spurs
Any guesses? It’s not who you might think.
Tim Duncan (that one’s kind of obvious), Patty Mills and Boris Diaw (not so obvious).
Duncan actually has a no-trade clause built into his contract. Not that the Spurs would even consider trading him even if they could, but it’s a privilege he’s earned by being in the league with the same team for so long. Duncan is one of only four players in the NBA with this brand of “team insurance,” along with Kobe Bryant, Dirk Nowitzki and Kevin Garnett, all players that you can’t imagine leaving their current teams.
Mills and Diaw have a bit of a different situation.
They both signed one-year deals with the Spurs and if they were traded, their free-agent Bird rights would be violated. That basically just means they have the right to stay with the Spurs because they would most likely make more money since teams are allowed to exceed the salary cap to sign back their own players. Diaw and Mills are two of 13 players that fall into this category.
This news doesn’t change much because nobody really has any of these three players on the trading block, but it’s an interesting little tidbit to know. I bet Diaw, Duncan and Mills are the envy of all their teammates, because no one wants to leave the Spurs.