The Status of the NBA’s Lockout

Hello everyone. Greetings, hope all is well.

Sorry for the inconsistency with my posting. I’ve had to balance my writing between school and trying to establish connections. I’ll figure out the perfect balance soon though, and when it happens you all will be the first to know.

I want to update you all on the status of the NBA’s collective bargaining dilemma. The NBA and NBPA arranged meetings last weekend for yesterday and today. The meeting yesterday seemed to be very productive in my opinoion. A basic summary of that meeting that I’m getting from the reports is that the owners have eased up on their stance to get a hard cap installed in the NBA. Here is an in depth article by ESPN.com about it.

The owners are willing to have more of a flex cap if they all can agree that the Larry Bird rights are only allowed to be applied to one player per season per each team, and that the luxury tax be more punitive than it has been with its dollar for a dollar punishment. What the luxury tax is when teams overspend to acquire or keep a player, they must pay that dollar with extra money that they earn from outside of the NBA. The owners in bigger markets with deeper pockets were able to do that with ease. The owners want that severley increased so that it will prevent teams from getting players that they should not be allowed to have. It limits the players choices also because teams will be less willing to spend over the luxury tax.

It seems that the owners are now set on decresing the players share of the Basketball Related Income (BRI) from the 57/43 percent split that they get now down to somewhere below 50%.

The owners didn’t budge on a desire to change the basketball-related income percentage (BRI) to a split that takes the players from 57 percent to the mid 40s, sources said. The players had offered to drop from a 57-43 split to 54-46 at a meeting last week in New York- Adrian Wajnorowski, Yahoo Sports

I’ve seen anywhere from the mid 40s to the high 40s in their offers; no where over 50% though. The players won’t take less than a 50/50 split and they don’t even want that. That would be a failure in the eyes of Billy Hunter and a lot of the other players. That seems to be the only thing that is holding this deal up for right now. The rest of the issues seem like workable issues since the owners backed off of their stance to have a hard cap.

The clock is working against both parties, and we’ve already seen training camp and half the pre season taken awy from us, per Ric Bucher of ESPN the Magazine. I’ve heard rumors on twitter from some NBA writers that if we don’t have significant progress by October 14th that’s when the cancellations will begin to go into the regular season and we’ll lose games that matter. That’s the date that I have marked on my calendar as one of the most important dates leading up to the NBA season.

Both sides now seem to want to make progress. The sides met yesterday and they met sometime earlier today briefly to decide when they would reconvene once again, per NBA.com. They will meet again on Friday, not tomorrow because of the recognition of a Jewish Holiday, and many star players will be there. There have been many players who want them to get more involved in the NBA lockout. Other players have even said so themselves. On the local radio here I’ve heard John Wall and Rasahrd Lewis both state that they are willing to fight, but they want stars like Kobe and Lebron to step in and join the fight. On Friday, it looks like they will.

Why all of this progress all of a sudden?

I think its because recently, Kobe Bryant has stated that he’s open to going to play overseas in Italy. He basically said it would be a dream for him to play in Italy. For those of you who didn’t know, Kobe spent some of his childhood overseas in Italy, so there is a connection there. Once Kobe goes overseas, and because he shows that he’s serious about it unlike with the Besiktas, many other stars will continue to follow. That’s something that could possibly end up hurting the NBA. Especially if some of them choose to go to Chinese leagues, which do not allow an opt out clause for return when the NBA comes back. Kobe is arguably one of the faces of the NBA, and as we all know, its never good to play with your face. (insert joke here)

Derrick Rose has also come out and said that the NBA lockout is unnecessary, per Chris Silva of ESPN Chicago.

“Right now, it’s looking pretty tough, but to me I think the lockout is unnecessary,” he said. “There’s no reason why billionaires and millionaires should be arguing about money. There’s other things in this world that we should be arguing about, but money shouldn’t be the problem.”

I think that a lot of us, as fans of the game, would totally agree with that statement. Some of us have been echoing that since day when of this lockout, which is now in day 90 I believe. Its just insane, and its unnecessary; however, some people will do anything for a dollar. That’s how society works at times, its ugly, but thats the way it is.

In my opinion, I feel like the players are stuck in the middle of this thing. They aren’t striking against the league, they are locked out. The lockout is on the owners more than it is the players, and I feel that it is an owner on owner argument. Its between the large market teams and the small market teams of the NBA. The small market teams are trying to take away all advantages that the large market teams have.

That’s why you have issues like revenue sharing and luxury tax right now. The large market teams are getting amazing TV deals from big networks, not just the local ones. The small market teams aren’t able to get those and that’s why they feel like they are losing money. Every team isn’t taking in the same amount of equal revenue, and I think that the owners are blaming the players for that. They need to settle that issue between themselves, and it seems like they are closer to doing that now than they have been before.

On the players part, I can’t really blame them for trying to keep the money that they’ve gotten back. Its like you giving someone a gift and then trying to take it back. It isn’t the players fault that the owners have given them outlandish offers before this season, and during last season. The owners set the market on how much a player is worth, if that player is overvalued based on production, then why fault the player? You shouldn’t, that’s not right.

I can understand the plight of the players. I’ll give you an example. If you had to choose between a school that wasn’t going to give you any perks, you get a flat, basic, education and it is your job to be productive and proactive in doing your work. The large market teams are like that magnet school that take away kids that are supposed to be going to a different school in a different district of town. They give you the perks, meaning the money, and concessions that the other school just isn’t able to give. Who are you to turn that down? Why should you give that back? When the other school tries to hard to get you to come there, and they offer you more than they can give, why should you have to pay for it? That’s the side of the players right there.

They have been promised money that the majority of owners are not willing to give up. They feel that they shouldn’t have to do that, and I side with them on that.

Regardless, this lockout is killing me. Its making the people sick seeing these grown men bicker over money. That’s the power of a dollar though, peole will do anything to get it.

That’s the status of the NBA lockout. Hopefully you’ll hear from me soon again, with more positive news. Thank you for your time in reading this, hopefully I’ve helped you understand some things you didn’t before.

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10 responses to “The Status of the NBA’s Lockout

  1. Great job as usual Mike, just shared it on my wall on FB!! Think people don’t understand that this is a little diff than the NFL lockout where it was truly owner vs player, the fact that this is mostly big-market vs small-market (owner wise) is being lost..the players CAN AND WILL continue to play ELSEWHERE if need be…SMH unlike football, the sport CAN AND WILL go on!! I enjoyed you sharing the #’s as well!! Keep up the good work!

  2. Great post! I’m so glad that someone finally pointed out the owners responsibility in all of this mess. They are the ones who created all of this by giving massive deals and letting the deals keep growing. In the end, I believe the owners are their own worst enemies. They can control themselves when it comes to spending, for the most part.

  3. You explain the very real divide between the “haves” and the “have nots” among the owners, yet you totally neglect to even mention a very similar divide between the interests of the “haves” (stars making big bucks) and “have nots” (the mean-and-under-salaried players.”

    And to suggest that Kobe Bryant supposedly entertaining the idea of playing in Italy is having an effect on the movement of the negotiations . . . I’d say that’s wishful hyperbole. : )

    • First off, thank you for the read. You were my 100th viewer for today and that’s a milestone that I’m proud of. Thank you so much.

      Now, getting to your statement. You have a point, I could’ve gone into the players divide in payment. But I don’t think its as similar as you think it is. There is a divide, but as a player you have to get out on the floor and earn your pay. If the owners don’t think you are worth that then you can’t really put that on the other players. There are underpaid players in the NBA, but the players are uniting right now trying to raise the salary for everyone. They can’t control what contracts each other sign. That’s the difference between the owners struggle and the players struggle. Please enlighten me if you feel I don’t quite understand what you’re getting at.

      And as for Kobe mulling over playing in Italy, I don’t think that its a mere coincidence that these talks started heating up when one of the faces of the NBA decides that if the lockout continues he WILL go overseas. Possibly play in Italy, but he is playing ball elsewhere. The same goes for Derrick Rose, Kevin Durant, Lebron James, and other star players. The NBA cannot afford to lose those faces, they lose their marketability and they lose more fans than. You may think its just hyperbole, but I think that it does play a factor in this. Not a large factor, but just a factor.

  4. You’re exactly right about Kobe. The NBA wasn’t scared when Deron Williams signed a deal with Besiktas. If Kobe goes, then that’s a bigger problem. Nice article. I think that if he goes somewhere abroad, it’ll be in Italy because he lived there for 7 years.

  5. I think you are a bit optimistic – this is all about the owners busting the player’s union, and the owners are willing to go all the way with this.

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