Yi's representatives trying to undermine the Bucks
In an unprecedented move of dubious legality, Yi's handlers are now trying to independently arrange a trade of the player away from the Milwaukee Bucks. Associated Press reports quote one of Yi's agents, Zhao Gang, as saying "His representatives and I won't sit here and do nothing just because he was picked by Milwaukee. We are considering Yi's future at the Bucks and are looking at trade possibilities."
I am currently efforting a copy of the NBA's rules, but on first blush, I don't know how this action wouldn't fly directly in the face of their player tampering prohibitions. I know teams are not allowed to express public interest in a player who is under contract with another team, so I don't see how they can discuss trade possibilities for a player to whom the Bucks have exclusive rights without the Bucks prior approval.
Bucks fans, if this latest affront by Yi's entourage doesn't steel you to the "We will sign him or eat his rights" position, nothing ever will. I'm boiling mad.
Update: All I could find out was that "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 to negotiate for their services." Though Yi is not technically "under contract" with the Bucks at this moment, that is a distinction without a difference in my mind. Under the rules of the drafting process, the Bucks hold the exclusive rights to sign Yi, so I do not see how another team talking to Yi's agents about acquiring him would not violate the spirit of, and rationale behind, the tampering rule. I will continue to investigate.