Labor Talks: 72-Game Season Or Bust

– For labor updates, follow: @daldridgetnt | @AschNBA

HANG TIME HEADQUARTERS – The choice seems rather simple from here, it’s either the 72-game season or bust. Take the deal and start the season in roughly a month or blow it all up.

And this time, it’s all on the players.

They asked for the owners to move a bit, show a little flexibility and come off that ultimatum talk that freaked everybody out earlier this week. Well, you got what you asked for and the proposal is in your hands (for review by the player reps from each team by Monday or Tuesday at the latest).

If time is what the union needs, that is what they will get with the weekend. Look it over, soak it in, chew on the details and think long and hard about what you do next, because if we’re this close to seeing the 2011-12 season and it somehow slips away between now and early next week … there will be no mercy from the masses.

NBA Commissioner David Stern made it clear late last night that there will be no better offer from the owners. This is it. Best offer on the table. Take it or leave it.

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Ian Thomsen of Sports Illustrated: On the 133rd day of the lockout, commissioner David Stern called the players’ bluff: Are you going to accept the new era for the NBA, or are you going to decertify? It is now time for everyone at the table to show his cards. Players finished 23 collective hours of negotiation Thursday with a final offer from the owners that Stern hoped would end the lockout with minimal damage to the season. On Monday or Tuesday, the union representatives from all 30 teams will meet to decide whether they should put this offer to the entire membership for a vote. Should the players accept, Stern said they will be able to salvage a 72-game season starting Dec. 15, with the playoffs and the NBA Finals starting one week later than normal. The final offer comes amid a swelling movement among the players to pursue decertification. They had been hoping to force the owners to compromise in negotiations by threatening to take the union’s case to court. Union executive director Billy Hunter acknowledged this week that as many as 200 players were prepared to sign a petition that would send the union down a path of 45 days or longer to potential decertification. Now the players face a hard choice of gambling on the courts and the uncertain bargaining leverage of decertifying, or instead embracing the certainty of a proposal that Stern insists is the best deal they’ll ever see. Union president Derek Fisher declined to assess the quality of the offer, other than to acknowledge it wasn’t good enough to earn his outright approval. Hunter said he was going to leave it up to the player representatives. “It’s not the greatest proposal in the world, but I have an obligation to at least present it to our membership,” said Hunter. “So that’s what we’re going to do.”

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Howard Beck of The New York Times: The player representatives of all 30 teams will meet with the executive board in Manhattan on either Monday or Tuesday to deliberate. They could accept the offer as is, reject it outright or — most likely — ask for more changes, despite Stern’s vow not to negotiate further. “It’s not going to get approved, as is,” one person aligned with the union said Thursday. “They’ve basically forced the union’s hand, polling our guys to see what items are the deal-breakers.” It is unclear whether the union could call for a full membership vote, since the deal is technically not complete; there are 30 to 40 “B-list” items – such as drug testing, player discipline and days off — that have yet to be negotiated. If the union rejects the N.B.A.’s offer, Stern will replace it with a “reset” proposal: 47 percent for the players, with a hard salary cap and steep rollbacks on current salaries. Rather than take that deal, the union would probably opt for dissolution and file an antitrust lawsuit, moving the battle to the courts and wiping out the season. So it appears that N.B.A. will either hold a 72-game season or shut down until the fall of 2012. When a reporter raised that possibility, Stern responded with cutting sarcasm, saying, “I don’t have your collective bargaining expertise or your crystal ball.” Asked what would happen if the union rejected the N.B.A.’s last offer, Stern said, “Then we’ll be awaiting their call for the next negotiating session over our 47 percent proposal and our flex cap.”

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Ken Berger of CBSSports.com: The players’ options are few, and none of them particularly appealing. They can put the deal to a vote, and if passed, they would be locked into a proposal that is an unmitigated victory for the owners — one that shifts $3 billion over 10 years from the players to the owners and also dramatically restricts the rules governing team payrolls, player contracts and player movement. If the player reps tell the union leadership they want to reject the proposal, then Stern said the league’s negotiating position will revert to a 47 percent share of revenues for the players along with a hard team salary cap and rollbacks of existing contracts — the so-called “reset” proposal whose introduction at 5 p.m. Wednesday was delayed while the two parties bargained for 23 hours over the past two days. … Another outcome likely will begin to unfold Friday before the union even decides whether to accept the proposal — and would continue to progress regardless of the outcome of next week’s player rep meeting: Agents dissatisfied with the deal the union has negotiated and the intransigence of league negotiators already have more than 200 signatures on decertification petitions which are ready to be submitted to the National Labor Relations Board requesting a vote to dissolve the union, according to a person familiar with the plans. Such a move would threaten to torpedo whatever support there is among the union membership to approve the owners’ offer, and if it resulted in the players deciding not to vote on the proposal or voting it down, could throw the 2 1-2 year negotiations into the chaos of an anti-trust lawsuit — virtually guaranteeing that the 2011-12 season would be lost.

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Josh Robbins of the Orlando Sentinel: And here’s the upshot for Central Florida: If the union accepts, the contingency schedule that’s been drawn up by the NBA still calls for the 2012 All-Star Game to be played in downtown Orlando on Feb. 26, league spokesman Tim Frank told the Orlando Sentinel. Fisher and Hunter sounded lukewarm toward the offer in their comments to reporters, but they did not say outright that the offer will be rejected. “It’s not the greatest proposal in the world,” Hunter said. “But I have an obligation to at least present it to our membership, and so that’s what we’re going to do.” Stern wouldn’t predict whether the union will accept the deal. But Stern did offer a word of warning. If the players reject the current offer, Stern said owners would take the offer off the table and replace it with a revised proposal that would drop the players’ share of basketball-related income to 47 percent. Chris Duhon, the Magic’s player representative, told the Sentinel early Friday morning that Stern’s warning could be counterproductive. “I think it [the current offer] is better than before, but more negotiations need to be done,” Duhon said. “This ultimatum is just going to make most players angry and go the distance.”

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Mary Schmitt Boyer of the Plain Dealer: Cleveland native Mark Termini has been an NBA agent for 25 years. So has Bill Duffy, one of the so-called Super Seven, an unofficial advisory group of highly respected agents that represents roughly 50 percent of the players in the league. In their admittedly biased opinions, one little-discussed consequence of the recent deals struck between the NBA and its players association is the diminishing impact agents have in the league. They don’t think it’s unintentional, and they don’t think it’s likely to be reversed whenever the new collective bargaining agreement (CBA) ends the lockout that reached its 133rd day on Thursday. “The agents represent a threat to the control of the owner and the team,” said Termini, who has represented many of the top players from Ohio, including Jim Jackson, Brad Sellers, Earl Boykins and Kosta Koufos. “They want to just deal with the player. They’re going to tell him what to do, where to go, when he’s hurt, when he’s not hurt, what doctor to go to, what’s a good deal, what’s a bad deal, when he’s traded, what time to report. “The agent gets involved in all of those decisions on behalf of the player and it’s burdensome to the team. They don’t like it. They’d like to eliminate that. So in these negotiations, as the options for the players become fewer and fewer, it has the hand-in-glove effect of reducing the role of the agent.” When Duffy was asked if he and the other members of the Super Seven agreed with that assessment, he said emphatically, “Without question.”

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J.A. Adande of ESPN.com: If the union played it smartly they’d say that now that the players have signaled their willingness to drop to 50 percent, the same question that was repeatedly demanded of the players – “Why isn’t 50/50 good enough for you?” – must be asked of the owners. After all, by some estimates simply reducing the players’ share of basketball related income from 57% to 50% would wipe out the $300 million in losses the owners said they suffered last year. That ought to be enough in itself.  The owners aren’t stopping there. Like the NCAA member institutions that approve ridiculously intricate rules because they don’t trust each other, the NBA’s have-nots are doing everything they can to keep talent from accumulating in select spots. They want, for instance, to avoid a repeat of Carmelo Anthony forcing his way to New York while being handed a lucrative contract on the way out of Denver. In the process, they’re putting their own interests ahead of the league as a whole. Player movement is better for the NBA. Fans feed off trade rumors and they devour big free agent signings. And it’s been demonstrated again and again that interest in the NBA is at its highest when competitive balance is at its lowest. Consider all that nostalgia for the 1980s, when the Lakers and Celtics won eight championships in nine years, or for the 1990s, when every year Michael Jordan was in training camp the Bulls ended the season with a victory rally in Grant Park. The league’s broadcast partners are much happier when they get Lakers-Celtics instead of Spurs-Pistons…and when the networks are happy, they write bigger checks for rights fees.  It’s possible to have it both ways, even under the old rules. The Heat were the best thing to happen to the NBA in 2010-11, making regular-season games matter for the first time since the Bulls embarked on their run at the record in 1995-96. At the same time, the Memphis Grizzlies won more playoff games than the Los Angeles Lakers, and the Oklahoma City Thunder went deeper into the postseason than the Boston Celtics. Big-market storylines and small-market opportunities can co-exist.

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Sean Deveney of The Sporting News: A source told Sporting News that the league also made a concession on sign-and-trades for tax-paying teams. There are still plenty of other issues to be determined—the sides agreed that there were at least 30 “B-list” items that need work, including how to define a tax-paying team, how much authority the commissioner has to punish players and what the league’s age limit will look like. But it’s the “A-list” issues that matter most. What happens next is that Hunter and union president Derek Fisher will call in the league’s 30 union reps to meet in New York early next week, most likely on Monday. The deal, as it stands, will be presented to the reps, who will then decide whether to put the offer to a vote. Though the deal does not feature the concessions the union had hoped to get from the league, it still comes with the same ultimatum that Stern put forth early last Sunday: that if the union does not accept it, the owners will offer a “reset” proposal in which players will get only 47 percent of basketball-related income, current contracts will be rolled back and future contracts will be shortened. Stern said he will get the 16 minimum votes needed among the 30 owners to get the latest deal passed.

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Chris Sheridan of Sheridanhoops.com: The season will start Dec. 15, there will be 72 games, and the start of the NBA finals will be pushed back into mid-June instead of early June. That is assuming the players ratify the proposal David Stern made to the union late last night. Here are the next several steps: 1. The union’s player reps, with one player representing each team, will have the proposal detailed for them at a meeting in New York on Monday or Tuesday (depending on travel logistics). 2. A petition seeking involuntary decertification will be filed with the National Labor Relations Board, which will sit on it until it sees whether the union accepts the offer on the table. 3. After the player reps are briefed, they will vote on whether to put the offer up for a vote by the entire NBA player population. 4. If a vote is endorsed, players will have to travel to a specific location (likely New York) to be present for a ratification vote. That could take until the end of next week because of the travel logistics. 5. If the offer is ratified, we are playing ball — but there will be less than 30 days for the agreement to be put into writing, for free agency to play out, training camps to open and one or two exhibition games to be played. In the meantime, we wait.

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Adrian Wojnarowski of Yahoo! Sports: Some in the union were frustrated with the union waiting until early next week to gather the player representatives back in New York, but there was a sense the players would still be too raw over how little the owners amended their offer to quickly sign off on it. Several players privately expressed frustration with the union’s leadership. “Why do they keep scrambling us to New York for these meetings when they never listen to us?” one player representative told Yahoo! Sports. “We told them not to go past 53 percent. They did. We told them we’re not taking this deal. Why waste our time?” With the owners appearing to have made only minor improvements to some of the key system issues the players wanted resolved, union officials admitted the proposal didn’t do enough to entice them to immediately endorse it. This deal isn’t much different than the proposal that team reps roundly rejected Tuesday in New York. Nevertheless, the owners feel a sense of weariness and defeat in the union leadership, and believe they’ve worn down the players enough to get them to take the deal, management sources said. Stern said the owners don’t plan to improve the proposal and will deliver the worse “reset” offer the league had previously threatened if the union doesn’t accept the deal. “There comes a time when you have to be through negotiating,” Stern said, “and we are.” Several agents told Y! Sports they have more than 200 player signatures on a decertification petition to force a vote to dissolve the union. The paperwork could be filed before Monday, even though it doesn’t preclude the players from accepting the league’s offer.

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72 Comments

  1. Wayne says:

    I love the NBA but I’m tired of this game – owners against players. Past are the days when flexibility and compromise could be reached by mature adults. These days it’s all about the money.

  2. Raymond says:

    No player no games. No games no profit. No profit no arenas. No arenas no fans. The owners may cut the checks, but without talent theres no income.

  3. waly says:

    This is my proposal (as a fan) for the NBA LEAGUE.

    1) The NBA Commissioner salary sholud be cut from $25 millions to $5 millions, with anual performance/competence evaluations.
    2) Big market teams should share their profits with small market teams for a period of two (2) years after which period the owner will be forced to sell his franchise to a more “smart oss” owner.
    3) Owners will not be allow to drink in public bars with players, have dinner or spend time in luxury yatchs with players and beautiful women as part of their previous relaxing time.
    4) Owners will be forced to give 1% of their salary for employees of their arenas.
    5) Medical Insurance with no deductible (PPO if possible) will be provide for ALL EMPLOYEES AND FAMILY.

    This is so far my proposal, with no ultimatum, but if not accepted by the league, a more drastic and less flexible proposal will be implemented.

  4. question says:

    I don’t understand.It’s 3 billion dollars over a period of 10 years and that’s a lot of money.But there are over 200 players and by splitting that money they will lose,based on their contracts,I don’t think they will fell it on their pockets.How much does Kobe earn ? 20,25 millions per season ? Let’s say that he will lose about 3,4 millions,which is a number way higher then what I will think they’ll lose,he would still earn about 20 millions a year excluding money from sponsors,etc. How does he spend so much money ? If I got my hands on 4 millions i wouldn’t probably have to work for the rest of my life,but Kobe needs those few extra mills for what? A new car every month ? Is NBA about heart or money ? Can somebody explain this to me or did I miss something ?

  5. James says:

    Screw these owners. Greedy bastards! I’m a huge Basketball fan and I want to watch games but I’m 1000% behind the players and agents that don’t want anything less than 53% of basketball related revenue. I watch basketball for the players, for the thrill of competition and that’s ALL put up by players, NOT the owners. Owners, especially Michael Jordan, need to take their argument with each other and work it out between themselves, not lay it on the players who have nothing to do with the fact teams are not on a level playing field because of economics. Economics is economics. The players gave back 4% of basketball related income when they dropped to 53% and that’s enough. Do not accept this deal Players. You will hate it your entire careers, and the next time these things are negotiated the entire season will be cancelled, perhaps the entire league will fall to pieces and there will be no basketball what so ever. So DO NOT TAKE THIS DEAL! Tell the League to stick it, and walk away, dissolve the union. I’ll still come back and watch Basketball when you win this fight, it cancels the whole season or not. Owners aught to be ashamed for trying to take such unethical advantage of the position the economy is in to ensure they ALL make money at the players expense, and from my point of view at the fans expense as well. I like it when teams aggregate great players. I like watching that kind of basketball. I do not like watching a bunch of half and half teams slug it out in boring fashion. NBA Players need to say NO! 53% or no deal, forget the season.

  6. Hahaha says:

    In anticipation of the players rejecting the current offer in a few days I would like to congratulate the owners and players on destroying the NBA. Good job guys!!! If small market teams struggled to make a profit before wait until they lose all the fans from this debacle.

  7. Thomas says:

    Lol @ finding players on the playground that are better than a lot of guys in the NBA. You might find a few that somehow would make an NBA bench, but you’re not going to fill a roster with talent. And lets not forget how important the development while playing college ball is.

    What I don’t like about the NBA is that there are only a small handful of teams that have a chance to ever win a championship. The NBA could learn a thing or two from the NFL, and even the NHL. And yes, the top tier players are overpayed, in relation to the available team salary.

  8. BLahhhhhhhhhhh says:

    Doesn’t the NBA itself make a profit every year aside from the income of individual teams? Let them make up the losses of the teams in the red every year and David Stern pay himself $5 million a year instead of $25 million.

    • waly says:

      hahahaha…that’s funny…haha…do you think that BIG SANTA STERN will put his salary on the line?….no way jose

  9. Jason says:

    Fire the players, have open tryouts and play basketball. Most of the players are over rated anyhow. The owners could find players on the playground that are better than alot of the guys in the NBA. If they had open tryouts we would really get to see the best basketball players in the world and you would see guys playing hard every game or they would be cut before the next game. Realize that you work for someone else, anybody that talked to their boss like these guys would be fired!

  10. This Sucks says:

    How much you wanna bet the owners are paying themselves a hefty salary before calculating that their team is operating at a “loss”. In the beginning of the current CBA I believed the players should take the owners at their word and sacrifice some. But they have given up plenty at this point. Now I truly believe the owners’ (not all of them) goal all along has been to lose the whole season and it looks like they’re going to succeed. They’re being insufferable pricks and it’s time for them to bend a little to make this season happen.

  11. Derek says:

    There is no negotiation here, all I see is blatant robbery. The owners are squeezing everything they can out of the player, and giving nothing back in return. This CBA the players get to pay for the mistakes owners made in the last decade.

  12. Felix says:

    Are you serious?

    If the players formed a group of like 100 people and went city to city playing games by themselves, selling their own tickets, renting their own arenas, they would make so much more money

    The owner’s are leeches. Tell me, what do owners do? NOTHING. At this point, they don’t even buy their own arenas, they get the cities and taxpayers to pay them.

    And really? All players should be endorsed by sports apparel? Not everybody is Kobe or LeBron.

  13. sam says:

    simple this is a hobby for NBA owners for the most part this is one part of a very big income. the players income is the NBA and there commercials. we don’t pay to see the owners(well except for mj that is) we pay to see lebron and wade dish oops to each other, Kobe dropping triples, Kevin love getting double doubles and so on so if the players are greedy so what? they deserve it they are putting there careers on the line by playing cause you never know if your going to get a huge injury that costs you your career. so i think that the owners need to realize that asking for a power balance of the NBA for all teams to compete for championships is not right i loved watching teams like the raptors pull off upsets against the mavs because it shows how good there going to be. we love having teams that cant compete at a high level every night that’s what makes the NBA what it is. that’s why lebron wade and bosh last year joined together to make a championship caliber team and guess what TV ratings go through the roof why? cause we want to see really good teams dominate the teams that are not so good and with all that being said it does not matter about talent last time i checked no team has lost 82 games in a season yet so why change it? i do not think the players should accept the current deal until there is changes made that show that the owners actually showed up to new York for one to actually negatiateing a new CBA.

  14. Daryl says:

    It might be just me, but I think no one knows exactly what concessions the owners have made. It’s also clear that the players have given up a lot in the BRI for this deal to get done.

    Basically I don’t think it’s right to comment on who is right here, until all the facts are known. Everyone here acts like they know what’s going on, and you simply don’t.

  15. Matthew says:

    Unfortunately it’s time to take a deal BUT I am not a professional basketball player and don’t have to deal with the pressures of an 82 game season. I can only imagine how draining it is mentally, physically, and emotionally. I am not just a fan of the NBA but a fan of the players. I give the owners as much credit as I give Spaulding even though they do make a great basketball. I would also like to give a shot out to the shoe companies as well. They also make the game exciting. Now that the sarcasm is over, I will back any decision the players make whether they take the deal or not because I can only dream about doing what they do and they have my utmost respect and admiration. Collective bargaining agreement… it’s not up to the players to agree to whatever is put in front them because an agreement usually takes two parties.

  16. quarogg says:

    Players say ” we love our fans, we love to play, we love basketball”. But this time put some sacrifice, accept the offer and play so dat we fans won’t be wasting our time thinkin what would happen this season…..To the owners, have some heart.

  17. Reggie W says:

    I’m a big NBA fan, but I don’t want to see the players being “railroaded” into taking a BAD DEAL just to save this season. The owners rolled the dice when taking their stance. When David Stern was asked on NBATV what the NBA would do to make it up to the fans for this, his response was ” I think the fans will return.” To me, that sounded like someone taking for granted that everyone will forget and the fans Love Affair with the NBA will not be affected.

    Well guess what Mr Stern, College Basketball has started and if you think that the fans won’t miss you, then go right ahead and Shut It Down. Take your chances and let the NCAA get all of that revenue that would otherwise be going into your franchises pockets. Didn’t learn any lesson from Major League Baseball, huh?

  18. LoveroftheGame says:

    Does anyone remember that the players won the last CBA back in 99? I mean really can we be more sensible about this. It seems like this new generation only sees this as owners attempting to take away from players. During what i like to call the Golden Era (Larry,Magic,Michael), teams were competitive for one, and most of all “superstars” stayed with their teams. You knew Patrick would be in NY, The Dream in Houston, Barkley stayed in Philly for the majority of his carreer, I saw part of an article by J.A. Adande where he proclaimed that the league is more interesting when competitive balance suffers. I beg to differ, even though Lakers/Celtics dominated the 80s and The Bulls dominated the 90s, it was the journey to those finals that made the league interesting. The quest for teams to dethrone their conference rivals, and the near uspets in the 1st round (5 game series), is what made it all work. I remember the Pistons blowing it against the Celtics when “There’s a steal by Bird, underneath to DJ lays it in….” The constant battles between Jordan and the Knicks, Reggie Miller and Chuck Person almost beating Boston in the 1st round back in late 80′s. The Lakers war with Dallas (80s) Kings 90/00), Houston Rockets winning it all as a 8th seed, Portland , and Seattle having their runs in the 90s. Even though the usual suspects won, it was those battles to get to the title that kept us watching. Players made good salaries and the best players got the best endorsments, therefore they didnt demand a huge percentage of team salary so they could sign a Rodman, Oakley, Perkins, Marc Jackson, Drexler, etc. to make themselves a legit contender. So dont tell me the league is better, when most of the “superstars” are lacking in fundamentals, and leadership qualities, undisciplined babies are the majority in the league, and teams are held hostage by their star players and ruin franchises with their constant movement. Adande said people dont want to see Pistons/Spurs, i do if its good basketball, who cares if a “marquee” name isnt in the finals. Thats been the league’s problem since MJ retired, trying to find the next bankable star to center the league around. Breaking News: there will NEVER be another MJ, so stop trying to make Durant, Rose, LeBron, the second coming. Instead celebrate the greatness that has been established with Bryant (that hurt to say that), Duncan, Wade, and now Nowitzki. STOP THE WORSHIP OF PLAYERS WHO HAVENT WON ANYTHING. With that said, either accept the deal or scrap the season, adopt a NFL econimic system, and LET’S PLAY BALL!!!

  19. Sandro says:

    who are in favor of what the players are doing are crazy, teams are losing money the “AVAREGE” saleries 5.7millions not forgeting the players that get 20M or 30M, basicly the players saying its ok if a team goes out of business whe dont care… i steal have in my mind bosh dint want to play the last games of the season so he wouldnt go to the playoffs so he could leave the team and he earns millions is that profissional or respectfull? and players with huge contracts and underpeform? what kind of reward is that? the only thing they should be arguing about its if a player preforms good should be rewarded n the rest litle stuff they cry about. the players where spoiled and want to control the league… they are forgeting the leagues his owned by everybody because we live in a society, TNT presenters aka ex players argument saying fans see the game because of players so they should recieve more, i dont really understand that and its pure nonense, the players recieve money because of the fans and the owners and the NBA wouldnt exist if 3 part dint exist… they are not underpaid they a overlypaid and after this deal they steal will be the best payed atlethes in the world and players never go bankrupt so for them its ok to make easy super fast super teams and unbanlence everything and keep owning millions why eaven compete if all the best players will be togheter in 5 6 teams in the league? go to the details take the deal and stop complaining like you own something PLAYERS!

    • waly says:

      Owners wanted to make profit, then players gave up 7% and acepted the 50/50 split of BRI, now that owners will be able to make profit they don’t want to FLEX in SOME (not all) system issues…..come on which part of this are you missing?…..owners are blocking the system.

  20. Ronald H. Witt says:

    I, Ronald H. Witt, would not mind a 72 game season, but anything less would suck.

  21. Jpen says:

    Just take it everyone is hungry for basketball, from the look’s of things and the reports coming in this is the best deal the players are going to get.

  22. Bredon says:

    Who cares which side is correct and which side is wrong. I just want the NBA the lockout will hurt the older teams because the older teams will have a harder time with more back to backs on the schedule. The lockout will favor the younger teams. Not the older teams.

  23. Danilo B. says:

    Just take the deal … we all want NBA SEASON to begin !! =)

  24. jimbo999 says:

    Players, stop acting like you know how to do business. Clearly, you guys don’t! Owners have invested capital per team so are at risk if the team is not making money. Don’t hide behind Jordan’s remark…it was an arrogant remark and he may have realized it now that he is an owner.

    Any income that the owner will make does not go to their pocket but goes to the salaries and cheques they sign while any income you get from the BRI goes to where…to your pockets. And although I think a few of the system issues are indeed strict but this is not simply a “nice to have” for the owners. This is to ensure they have profitability.

    So if you really love the game, then get on with it. If not, then go chase your money.

  25. omar says:

    I think that they should make a deal as soon as posible

  26. Chris B says:

    Well it seems to be true that money corrupts. That’s all this seems to be about now. The fact is: businesses need to make a profit, if they don’t, they fail. If teams continue losing money there won’t be a CBA to negotiate next time. Unfortunately for the players, the majority of the rest of the American population will never side with them, because we can’t comprehend how 450k a year, which i believe is the minimum, isn’t enough money. I’m not saying all the players should make the same wages, that would be like paying a lawyer the same wage as a janitor. But let’s face it; ultimatums rarely lead to positive things. That was a horrible decision. From a business standpoint, I’m frustrated that a professional sport loses money. From a player standpoint, I’m frustrated that I’m being bullied into a corner knowing I’m going to lose. In the end, there won’t be any integrity or dignity to salvage.

  27. Truly Frustrated says:

    I have watched basketball, gone to games and have purchase merchandise from the NBA. People are calling the players greedy, I agree, however the owners are just as greedy. The only folks that I feel bad for are the businesses and workers that are suffering because they are employed by the NBA or they depend on the fan base that come into the businesses that are effect by this sport. With that said if fans truly want to change the business of the NBA, the secret lies with the fan. We support the institution. There wouldn’t be such a fight if the fan really wanted to change thing stop buying the apparel, instead of taking your children to watch game go and play basketball with them. Do you think television, or any other companies would fight over these guy if you the fan chose not to watch them. If as a fan you truly want to change the landscape stop spending your money on these events. I know I’m done. I would have at one point called myself and avid fan of sports, but I can no longer fathom watching these athletes play at the salaries or what the owners are bringing in, and watching what is happening to the economy and the amounts of people that are begin effective by it. So instead of spending my money on athletic events, I have decided to put it to better use. I know I’m just one voice, however if several other voices are added to my, I garuntee that the landscape would change.

  28. Lou says:

    i’m done with hoping and reading and waiting and wishing.. here’s my own ultimatum to the players: take the deal and get this party started so i can watch you guys in action when i’m in the states on holidays with my girlfriend in December, fulfilling a life-long dream, or lose another fan.. got plenty of other ways to spend my time and money.

  29. MaFox says:

    If you guys were in the players’ position, you wouldn’t be saying the sheet your saying

  30. alaskanfan says:

    derek fisher is holding up the league so older aged team like the lakers will be fresher in the playoffs. nice strategy fish, but i busted you so please take this deal.

  31. jabs says:

    the hell with the players and owners i just whanna see some good basketball im tired of watching hockey

  32. BMS says:

    Also, this is not for the love of the game no more. There’s been a major paradigm shift in the meantime… it’s for the love of money, plain and simple. Cheers.

  33. DMK says:

    This lockout is about pride and respect to the players and money is no problem to them since they make about millions or more, but at this point they MUST make a deal now even though owners are being complete capitalist pigs, they had the upper hand along, which sucks but we must give in for the better. Swallow your pride and make the deal!

  34. BMS says:

    I wouldn’t call it negotiation… more like blackmailing!!! Ultimatum after ultimatum. Shame on you!!! Cheers.

  35. GianGroy says:

    Blufff.

  36. Jeckyl, J says:

    I like how the players all stand around behind Derrick Fisher with their gangster faces on… lol… tryhards!

  37. Jkey says:

    Is it me, or are there just too many contract ‘exceptions’? I think there are too many and this makes the contract/money situation unnecessarily messy. Make contracts simple, lower the costs of max contracts (who is really worth $15m for a season, seriously?), make modifications to any new contracts that come into play from this season on (if you’re in a contract, that’s a bonus, you get extra $) and work hard on that luxury tax.

  38. LRivas says:

    I’m sorry…If you ask me, these players should be happy to be getting paid their ridiculous salaries and shut up and play the game they are paid to play. I am completely unsympathetic to someone who is whining about not getting their share of millions of dollars when people are losing their homes and having to choose between making car payments or buying food for their families. It’s wrong!!! We make about 1% of what these player make in a year.

  39. dcpkeys says:

    Maybe the players need to get together and start another league. If they look to lose this season anyway why not spend that much valuable time during something worth while other than trying to squeeze sweetness out of a lemon.

  40. Will B says:

    just take the deal, its the best offer your gonna get

  41. Justin says:

    Players are acting pretty dumb id say, 22 teams lost money last year, and the spurs were one of them. if you got a big name team like the spurs losing money, the nba has to cut back… not give out raises they are complaining bout more millions when the nba is losing money and the rate its was going in 5 years teams would go bankrupt.. then what will happen 15 players would be out of a job for one team, including all the staff thats hired under that franchise. cut backs have to happen now if they want the leagues to grow in the furture

  42. clown1 says:

    The best season was the strike year where they played 52 games. Then every game meant something, not like the usual 82 game season where they can take a night off
    1. Players are making too much money as it is.
    2. 52 Game seasons from now on.
    3. No back to back games period. Lets the older more skilled players get rest so they can compete better and play in league longer..
    4. Howard Stern is super annoying smug

  43. Josephslive says:

    I 100% agree with Gianni Jackson I mean, how is it so hard to make a fair deal when you should just split it 50/50. Come on players and owners especially the players, DO THE MATH!

  44. George says:

    I really want the season to start, but if I was a player (which i’m not) i would rather loose the season to send a message to the owners, that this is our league not your league, we make the money for you guys, you pay us through the 3rd parties and fans not out of your own pockets. They also should stand for what it’s right because from 10 years from now the owners will stay the same (majority of them) but a lot of the players will not and the owners should remember this years fiasco.

    • Hello says:

      So you’d choose to send a message to the owners even though it means costing the jobs of arena vendors, clean-up staff, security guards, and others who make minimum wage? Stand up and fight for your rights and the rights of players 10 years from now who will be making millions! Screw those minimum wage losers lol

  45. DJF says:

    David Stern is a horrible guy. I hate him more then Gheddafi!!

  46. Rockets Fan says:

    I’m a long time fan and really want the season to get underway. Despite that, if the season doesn’t happen, it won’t be the players that I blame. Going from 57% to 50% on the BRI should be more than enough for the owners.

  47. Memphis Kid says:

    I must say I am no longer an NBA fan. The players are acting extremely insensitive. What about the arena workers without jobs? What about the fans? The players are acting like babies and just need to see what effects this nonsense is having on the arena staff, their families, and city revenue as a whole. Outrageous! I’m sticking with NCAA basketball from now on.

  48. Accept Already says:

    the fans are getting the short end, not the players or the owners. Must be nice to negotiate millions/billions of dollars, and who gets how much. What about the fans? ticket prices go up, concessions go up, merchandise goes up, but only the teams that spend over the salary cap make it to the finals?? How is that fair to the fans? If there are no fans to come to the games because your home team can’t compete; how will your million dollar salary be paid? The economy is in the toilet, fans can’t afford pricey tickets to watch losing teams. Allow the NBA to be more competitive and enjoyable to watch…its depressing to watch a game and the stadium is 20% full….only a handful of teams made a profit last year? How is that good business? Plus, I want to start my fantasy team, accept already!

  49. Trisco says:

    the players need to realise one thing…no owners, no NBA.
    They are the ones who put the capital up to pay for the players and rightly so should they get a larger portion of the BRI.
    If the players are smart enough and they are marketable, then they should be able to get the salary from the NBA and be endorsed by other forms of marketing.

    The league needs to be sustainable and the owners need to ensure that they make money to keep themselves in this league.

    Greed is getting out of control and the game is suffering based on this!!

    Get on with it…take the deal, play the game you all supposedly love, and make your fans happy.

  50. Metta World Peace is Crazy says:

    Sign the deal & move on. Get to playing. Owners aren’t going to budge.

  51. orn says:

    I would say with certainty of 90% that players will accept the deal.
    I am curious how balanced the league will be. Don’t think the changes are big enough.

  52. Gianni Jackson says:

    The Player should not give the owner any of their percentage. If anything the deal should be 50 t0 50%.

    The next thing Com Stern should not have the power to take the amount of money from Player that he taken. It should be deceided by a board.

  53. canary63 says:

    When they do go back on the court, maybe the fans should not attend leaving empty arenas. We will then see how much revenue they can fight over !!! Players,. just take the deal .

  54. NBA cares says:

    NBA nobody cares…….

    Billionaires trying to cut the guts out of the players……………

    risky business…..

    owners need to be as flexible as the players in this deal or we have no deal.

  55. Fans says:

    What about the fans?? we want cheaper tickets too then…also cheaper pay per view, cheaper foods, cheaper everything!!!

  56. confused says:

    “Take the deal and start the season in roughly a month or blow it all up.
    And this time, it’s all on the players.
    They asked for the owners to move a bit, show a little flexibility and come off that ultimatum talk that freaked everybody out earlier this week. Well, you got what you asked for and the proposal is in your hands (for review by the player reps from each team by Monday or Tuesday at the latest).”

    What?!

    The owners made minimal concessions and have simply replaced one ultimatum with another. I have no clue how you think that puts the blames squarely on the players if this escalates.

  57. Noel says:

    I Think Pride Will Play A Big Roll In Whatever Conclusion They Will Made….

  58. Noel says:

    I Just Think Player Will Make The Best Decison..

  59. Marcus says:

    This soap opera is really boring…
    Total disrespect with the game of basketball (like players and owners like to say).
    Total disrespect with the fans.
    An insensitive behavior (both by the owners and the players) to the needs of workers whoose jobs depends on the NBA business.

  60. George G. says:

    Even though the deal is not absolutely fair, the players MUST accept it now. If they don’t, they open Pandora’s box. And, in such a case, they have more to lose than to win.

  61. gilbert says:

    I totally aggree with Mchael’s comment, In the eyes for the fans now, if we lost this season, it’s all the players fault. Time to act like true gentleman and act like adults. For the benefits of the fans and the people who adore the sport approve the latest proposal since this is much better than the 47-53 BIR that owner promises to offer next. Bear in mind that the owners can survive without the season or more and not the players. So please think it clearly and decide for the best for the sport.

  62. Michael says:

    It is time for the players to accept the deal and get on with it. It is obvious the owners are not going to budge any further and all the players are doing now is acting like a bunch of kids whining and crying to the owners who are acting like the strict parent. The league and owners want that competitive balance and they are going to get it in one way or the other. This is going to be 10 year deal and the league and owners know eventually the players will just eventually give in.

    • David says:

      I have no idea what you are talking about Michael. The owners are not going to budge because they never budged. This was never a two way fight, this is about the owner punching the crap out of the players and all the player are trying to defend themselves and will not ever have a chance to fight back. Out of all the issues negoetiated, not a single one moved towards the direction of the player, it all about the owner taking as much as possible.

      • Shawn says:

        David. You are correct. It is not a fair fight. Nor should it be. If you work for my company and demand so much money, my company can’t be profitable, guess what? – I won’t hire you. The same is true in the NBA. The players are all saying, “We love the game. We love our fans, but the have to understand it is a business.” I understand it is a business. I don’t think the players do. The idea that they think they should have so much control over the business aspects of the game is ridiculous. Do they ever stand to lose money? I don’t mean make less money- I mean actually lose money, the way lots of teams have done under the old CBA. Maybe some people don’t believe that teams are actually losing money. So what? Is it OK to just break even? Maybe the players should play for free if the team is only breaking even? That sounds fair to me.

      • David says:

        The players are getting paid that much because they are the business, essentially. In one of the interview, I think Kenny or some one said what right, we don’t pay to see the owners play. If you want to talk about breaking even, the owners lost 200 million last season, the player will give back (in a 50-50 system) 280 million per year. On top of that, I don’t think players are 140% of the cause of the problem. Even further, NBA just had one of its best season last year in terms of everyting, so why can’t owners just admit that they made some wrong decisions, talk amoung themselves, correct them, (doing so while I’m watching NBA basketball) and continue to make a fair share of money?

      • Nelson says:

        David i agree… and Shawn… its way different then your example.. first off the players are why the owners even make money at all.. they are the ones going out and getting the support of fans.. not the owners.. they are the ones putting there body on the line every night.. not the owners.. they make the teams money.. not the owners.. the owners wanna sit and say the players are the ones not budging.. but its the owners.. the players took the 7% hit for the league.. the owners now need to give a little.. this deal is BS.. you can’t just tell them how its gonna be.. you have to be fair.. or you get nowhere.. small market teams are small market teams because of crappy owners.. not the system.. lakers and celtics will always be good… you know why? because they have good owners.. GM’s.. and coaches.. they know how to get it done… i also i really wish someone would shoot stern right now.. because all i hear on espn is his big mouth goin off about how the players are bein idots.. when its the faggot owners…. smh and what since does it make to go backwards.. they have made progress and if the players don’t like it and want more.. they are gonna take hella steps backwards? yea because thats gonna do a lot.. this dude is an idiot…

  63. Aaron says:

    I think the Owners a right about most of the issues

  64. Aaron says:

    It will suck if the season is over.