It’s interesting that Cuban is quoted in this, and also goes to show how corrupt the AAU/College Basketball situation is, because the one thing standing in the way to American sports being more like other countries is that the entire system is predicated on the owners making money, not actual competition.
The dream is an American version of La Masia, the FC Barcelona soccer program that produced stars such as Lionel Messi and Andrés Iniesta. FC Dallas has nine homegrown players on its roster, including Jesus Ferreira, a 16-year-old who recently became the second-youngest player in MLS history to score a goal. Its academy is the envy of every MLS club. And it might be coming to the NBA.
“I think [FC Dallas] is doing it right. That is our future. We have to get AAU out of the mix,” Mavericks owner Mark Cuban told me over email.”
Having a training academy costs money, and right now NBA and NFL owners get their player development done for free by colleges. Then they simply draft the best players instead of truly developing young players, which encourages teams to either do really well and compete for a championship, or do really poorly in hopes of drafting the better players.
An academy would require getting rid of the draft, and maybe even considering relegation for teams that are non-competitive. There would need to be some detriment to simply taking in the TV money and the public stadiums deals and doing noting else.