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Thursday, June 30, 2011

NBA Lockout

Tonight at 11:59 the NBA Collective Bargaining Agreement ends. Today at noon top league officials as well as Derek Fisher, the NFLPA President met in Manhattan to negotiate the new CBA.

Unlike the NFL situation, where billionaires and millionaires are essentially bickering over how to split up all the fucking money the NFL makes; the NBA situation pits different owners' interest against each other and the players.

In the NFL, every single team makes money. Even the Bengals and the Bills make millions upon millions of dollars. In the NBA, the small market team owners are griping about LOSING money. Millions of it per year apparently.

From ESPN:
Owners still want a reduction in the players' guarantee of 57 percent of basketball revenues. Players said their latest proposal would have taken them down to 54.3 but say the league's offer would have them down to around 40 percent.

The NBA claims 22 of the 30 teams are losing money. Slicing into the players' salaries would help alleviate financial pressure on small market teams.

Here is why this lockout would be terrible, but I think it will happen.

Too few teams being successful is the main issue. If 22 of 30 teams are losing money, then a lockout would actually save those 22 teams money. The successful teams will probably rally to get a deal done quickly. The Lakers, the Celtics, the Heat; their owners will be yelling for a resolution. But how can the eight guys in the room making money out-vote the 22 losing money?

But look, this last NBA season has finally started to elevate the NBA to the popularity it enjoyed when Michael Jordan was in the league. Unlike the NFL, where fans will watch no matter how long they have to wait; most NBA fans are casual at best. There are certainly a lot of NBA fans, but there are a ton that will just forget about it if this season doesn't happen. It will set the NBA back ten years.

Let's see if Stern has any balls

If David Stern wants to go down as anything but a shmuck of a commissioner, he will drop the hammer and get these negotiations going, and fast. For those of us who actually follow the NBA from September on, this year is going to suck once the NFL season is over. What the fuck do we watch in February? Hockey?

Bottom line is, the NFL owners are all making cash, and the NBA has some owners who are hemorrhaging dough from the jugular. Take care of the fucking loser teams so the season can go on Stern. If I were him I would have locked the room they are negotiating in today until 11:59 and make something happen.

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