#Storytime: NBA Players Vent Their Frustrations Over Canceled Games

Yesterday I wrote about how the NBA players were making a too little, too late effort to win fan support as the deadline had already passed to save the first two weeks of the season by starting a hashtag campaign on Twitter. By no means was I suggesting that the owners are the good guys in this whole mess, but I’m also not saying we should all stand behind the players. Look, both sides are wrong, just as both sides were wrong during the NFL’s lockout. The only side that is right is the fan side, because we pay the money. But my point yesterday is that neither side has seemed to give a crap about us, so we should be angry.
With that said, the players have been lighting up Twitter to try and explain to us why we should care that two weeks of the season have been canceled. As many commenters have pointed out over the past few weeks, we shouldn’t care. As far as I’m concerned, as long as the agents are poisoning the players for the sake of preserving large contracts, we shouldn’t care. But as a season ticket holder for the Orlando Magic, I do care. As a friend of people who work for a NBA franchise and people whose small businesses depend on the NBA season for income, I care a lot. This whole thing is frustrating, disappointing and sad.
But the players are speaking out – and more importantly they’re trying to clear up some misconceptions (like Steve Nash above) and have intelligent conversations about the lockout – so let’s see what they have to say. Especially if it’s in rap and/or Twitter form.

Before the Tweet revue, this is Orlando Magic forward Brandon Bass’ debut rap single, “Billion Dollar Dream.” Bass is one of my favorite NBA players so this is… something. I’m not sure. Even if it’s good, I still can’t endorse a NBA player rapping. It’s just one of those things.
It does, thank you, Carmelo. Now whatever you do, don’t start feeding the Twitter trolls.
Aw, damn it.
OK good. Now don’t start lashing out at people for being ignorant.
I don’t know what Tweet from Joe Solomon this was in response to, but I think it was a retweet from my buddy Peter Burns comparing the salaries of Detroit Lions RB Jahvid Best ($450,000) and Philadelphia 76ers forward Darius Songaila, who makes $4.5 million. Either way, it’s not a very good time for a NBA superstar to be calling fans pathetic idiots.
Forget it, I’m giving up on Melo.
Phoenix Suns forward Jared Dudley took some time to politely answer questions from his fans. I’ve included some of them that I thought were important for people to understand, including the Tweet above. See, this is how you interact with the people who pay money to make you a millionaire. It’s called respect and appreciation.
This is very true and an ultimately important point. Every single person – myself, Brandon, your mom, a homeless man, President Obama – would sign a piece of paper that reads: “We’re going to pay you this much money for this many years regardless of how you perform.” The current economic situation is not the players’ fault, unless you’re like me and you say, “Well it kind of is because a guy like Rashard Lewis played his ass off to get the contract, played one solid season after he signed it, and then he sucked major cow balls.” But that’s still not his fault for signing it. There was no gun to the head involved.
Now Gilbert Arenas on the other hand…
Another very important point. The players are willing to reduce their basketball related income share from 57% to 53%. They don’t actually have much of a choice. If they want to sign a deal, they’re taking a cut. But at least guys like Dudley recognize it and address the fact that they’ll make the deal.
Oof, this isn’t a good response. By canceling two weeks of play, the owners and players are both losing about $200-250 million. In this recession, none of us want to hear that people are passing up that kind of money, especially the people who work for the teams and the arenas.
Very simple, seemingly sincere. I’m telling you, I’m totally falling for the new, improved sweetheart LeBron James. Of course that will change as soon as the season begins.
Scratch that, I already hate him again. Please stop pretending like you want to play in the NFL. As much as I would love to watch James Harrison get you over the middle, this is just fueling idiotic speculation.
I appreciate this take on it.
Roger Mason is on the union’s executive committee. He has been keeping up with the league’s fans and clearing up misconceptions. This is true, there is technically no deal to sign. The owners and players are still way too far apart on some serious issues aside from just BRI.
Great, more meaningless Twitter battle cries.
Exactly. Don’t start a battle cry unless you’re willing to go to bat for everyone. All for one, or something like that.
This is a good point. Like Dudley pointed out, the players are willing to give up money because they know they have no choice. But now they’ve dug their heels in and the owners aren’t respecting the fact that they have to give up more than a hard salary cap that doesn’t even exist in the first place. The owners are making up their concessions while the players are actually giving something up.
It’s a bit harsh, but the league’s real fans are angry. I don’t even consider myself a real fan (baseball and football first and second) but I’m furious that the fans and the supporting cast of blue collars workers are being treated like sh*t.
Steve Nash’s Tweets have been spot on. He’s really trying to tell fans that he understands and he’s not arguing with anyone.
I hate when people comment “This.” on Internet posts and articles, but in this case… This.
I agree with Dwyane Wade wholeheartedly. When this lockout is resolved, regardless of the outcome, David Stern needs to be blamed. This is twice under his watch, and he doesn’t seem upset at all that us fans are losing out. He’s as robotic and indifferent as ever.
But I’d like to hear from a player who really knows how to talk to us and respects what he, his peers and the fans are going through together…
Thanks, Lamar.