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Spencer Dinwiddie has played more than 300 NBA games and scored more than 4,000 points but is clearly wasting his time playing a kids’ game. The 27-year-old Brooklyn Nets guard displays a creative business mind and should be working in the executive suite of a Fortune 500 company.

Dinwiddie’s latest idea will never fly with NBA commissioner Adam Silver. Still, it shows that the man is always thinking – not a bad trait for a pro basketball guard.

Spencer Dinwiddie invites fans to decide his future

The Brooklyn Nets have guard Spencer Dinwiddie signed through next season and then the 2021-22 season is a player option. Dinwiddie can play that season for $12.3 million, but he has a more interesting idea: He announced Friday that he is offering basketball fans the opportunity to contribute to a GoFundMe campaign in exchange for the right to choose his next NBA team.

The price? Dinwiddie wants to raise $24.6 million (twice the value of his contract’s option year) of bitcoin. If the campaign falls short – and it was suspended Monday with a mere $1,150 in it — then Dinwiddie pledges to give the money to charity.

“Fan engagement comes in all shapes and sizes, lets (sic) have fun folks!” Dinwiddie wrote on the charity page.

This might just be an NBA player pulling our leg

Spencer Dinwiddie is not the sort of guy who merely shows up, plays, and cashes a check. Rather, he is a thinking man’s player. He’s been averaging 20.6 points and 6.8 assists a game on the court this season, and at least one fun idea a month off of it.

After all, Dinwiddie is the guy who recently tried to convince the NBA to let him sell shares of himself. Dinwiddie’s idea was to collect money up front from investors, who would profit once his career earnings reached a certain point.

Rock star David Bowie was an early adopter of the concept in 1997. He issued $55 million in “Bowie Bonds” that offered investors a 7.9% interest rate and matured in 10 years, backed by the royalty payments from his catalog of more than two dozen albums. Bowie got all his money up front, the investors received the promised payments, and the rights to the royalties eventually reverted to Bowie.

The NBA shot down Dinwiddie’s plan the last time around and is certain to say no to the new proposal. It is doubtful Dinwiddie will mind; even he had to know that what he proposed skipped unorthodox and proceeded directly to unwise.

Some obvious problems with getting fans involved

Even if Spencer Dinwiddie had been able to round up the $24.6 million he had sought from fans, the logistics required to keep up his end of the bargain were unworkable. The two most obvious problems:

  • What if the team that the fans chose for Dinwiddie didn’t want him?
  • What if the team wanted Dinwiddie but didn’t have enough money available under the salary cap – even if Dinwiddie followed through on his promise to play for the league minimum since the fans had already put up $24.6 million?

The latter would be a violation in any league that has a salary cap. The purpose of the cap is to put a limit on spending by owners, so allowing a third party – or many thousands of third parties – would be an impermissible way of skirting the rule.

As CBS Sports reported, the idea may not be covered by the league’s constitution, but it certainly violates the portion of the collective bargaining agreement dealing with salary caps.  

Fortunately for Dinwiddie, there is no NBA rule against a player having a little bit of fun while waiting out the pandemic shutdown.