Doug McDermott was rumored to be signing with the San Antonio Spurs shortly after free agency opened. This transaction came to fruition, but in a mutually beneficial way for both the Spurs and McDermott's former team, the Indiana Pacers.
Indiana sent San Antonio a future second round pick and the rights to swap second round picks in another draft for the right to make it a sign-and-trade transaction. The Spurs still get their player, while the Pacers create a Traded Player Exception of approximately $7.4 million. And, of course, McDermott gets the full value of the contract he agreed to with San Antonio.
Turning free agent losses into sign-and-trades has become a more-common transaction in recent years. Last offseason, the Boston Celtics were able to send the Charlotte Hornets two future second round picks to turn the Gordon Hayward signing into a sign-and-trade. That transaction allowed Boston to create the largest Traded Played Exception in NBA history at $28.5 million. The Celtics used that TPE to acquire Evan Fournier at last season's trade deadline, and then the remainder to acquire Josh Richardson this offseason.