I just got clarification regarding the rules for trading this years draft picks.
For starters the moritorium for contract discussions of a player like Rashard Lewis is in affect right now. The team is technically not allowed to discuss contract issues with Lewis. Any deal involving him would have to be under the table and we all know that would never happen :)
Seriously the Sonics keep things pretty above the board. I think their lack of under-the-table dealings has actually hurt them in the past.
Here's the interesting thing however. The NBA has adjusted the rules relating to draft picks. Free agents who are signed cannot be traded in a multi-player transaction for 90 days or until mid-Dec., whichever comes first. However I have been informed that this rule no longer applies to draft picks. A draft pick can be traded 30 days after his signing. As such a team could choose to either sign their draft pick immediately and then trade his rights in July, in which case his contract would count towards the salary match, or they could leave him unsigned and trade his rights at that time.