What Players Have to Deal with When Traded to a New Team
In professional sports players are traded all the time. It’s part of the game. It’s something that impacts a lot of players, and in more ways that you might think.
Just look at how many transactions among Major League Baseball teams take place. Players are traded, released and resigned every single day. A lot of people think being a professional athlete is easy. They assume they all make a lot of money and live a great life for “only” having to play a sport.
Yeah some have it very well, but there are a lot of things they have to deal with that adds stress to an already stressful life. I want to dive into what they have to face when they receive news of a trade.
While some trades are welcomed (and even requested) some come as a complete surprise. Whatever the case may be, here are some things the players are forced to deal with right away.
Leave Everything Behind Immediately and Adjust Right Away
When a player is traded they have to join the new team right away. They are often on the first flight out, to join the team wherever they might be. Sometimes they even play for the new team within a matter of hours.
They have to be able to quickly adjust and walk away from their current city. They literally leave everything behind. If they have a family they leave and then the family waits for things to settle down and for the player to be accustomed to the new environment. They will often live in a hotel at first. Remember, plating for the new team is priority number one.
Find New Housing and Handle Old Housing
What is the player has a large family? They have to uproot them, find a new house in the new city and then sell the old one. Or if they were renting they need to settle the old lease (the old team will typically do a solid and handle this) and then find a new home to rent (the new team will often help to ease the transition).
For example, when a MLB player is traded to the Diamondbacks, a Realtor who is a member of the Arizona Realtors Association springs into action and attempts to find a suitable home in terms of features and location. All this must be done quickly.
Uproot Family and Change Schools
If they player has kids and it’s the middle of the school year they will often pull them and then have them start at a new school. This can be very challenging for many reasons. They have to leave friends and a familiar surrounding.
All of this while they are focused on performing at the top level for their new team. There is a lot of pressure that comes with the trade, so the little outside things that the fans never think about can contribute to that. It can take some people longer to adjust to a new environment.
Make New Friends and Comforts
Their old friends? Back in their old city.
Their old favorite place to get breakfast or go relax? Replaced by new ones.
Being a professional athlete can be very stressful, so they often rely on the friendships they make with teammates, and when they are traded those relationships are broken and they start fresh.