All 30 of the NBA’s team owners met for a five-hour meeting yesterday in Dallas to discuss the league’s future and they all agreed – screw the future. They decided that the players have less than 48 hours to accept a new Collective Bargaining Agreement or they will have no problem locking them out. Somewhere, Bud Selig and Gary Bettman are playing tummy sticks.
“The owners authorized the labor relations committee to do whatever steps were necessary to effectuate a new collective bargaining agreement and so that committee has the full authority of all 30 teams to act in whatever way they deem appropriate,” Silver said.
Further talks with the players’ union are scheduled for June 30, NBA Commissioner David Stern told reporters. It was the union’s choice not to meet tomorrow, he said.
“I sure would like to see us make a deal,” Stern said. “Not making a deal should give everybody apprehension.” (Via Bloomberg)
As of right now, with the proposed 10-year CBA on the table, the players and owners are about $7 billion apart. The main problem is that the league made $4.3 billion this season while league owners claim that they collectively lost $300 million because 22 teams lost money. Players Union officials say that number is considerably smaller, hence the big gap between the two sides. While the league hasn’t disclosed a list of the teams that lost money this year, Forbes reported back in January that 17 teams were already losing money. Out of 30. Dwight Howard shoots a higher free throw percentage than that.
Earlier in the season, Stern boasted that things couldn’t be better for his league, and he was right. Numbers were up across the board – ratings, attendance, sales – except when it came to the league’s small market teams, and it now appears that the NBA has 22 small market franchises, if the owners are to be believed. But as recent as the first round of this year’s playoffs, Stern seemed to be taking the matter much more seriously. Either way, the NBA built considerable momentum this season and that couldn’t possibly be affected by something like a lockout, could it?