Alright. Lockout could very well happen tonight, guys. It sucks for everytone, no doubt. But I was looking through and didn;t really find much of an exclusive Lockout Thread to gauge who thinks what about what. Maybe this can sort of entertain us for a while. Surely we love to argue and debate!
I found an interesting quote and a couple quick thoughts to get rollin'. Let's take a stroll...
So full disclosure- I fall on the players side for the most part. Do I support them 100%? No. Maybe it's more like 85-90%. My thing is, the NBA is a business like just about everything else. Technically the players are employees. However, they are the ones generating the money. They are also the product. That complicates things a bit obviously. Employees are always the greatest expense to a company.
Given that though, it is the owners who make the call on contracts. We know all about having 'bad contracts' on our team in the past but can you really blame the players for that? They are out to make money like the owners are, but shit, you think Jerome James had to think twice when Isiah and the Knicks offered him $30 over 5yrs?? Deep down, dude knew that no one else would offer him close to that so he better jump now. I blame the owners for decisions like that. Especially now when they are trying to play victim here by talking about how out of control player salaries are. I have little sympathy for that since it was them who could have said a long time ago... "Shit, do we really need to pay Brad Miller $5 Mil to be hurt every other week?"
Now, on the flip side, if you own an NBA Team, you ought to be the one making the most money off your team. I have no issue with owners making money. Shit, they BOUGHT the team at some point. They may be losing money because of bad decisions, but the system shouldn't be weighted as such that the players make half the revenue. I know it isn't that even a split, but there IS a bit of revenue sharing. One of the aspects of this new CBA is the owners wanting to carve off a larger % of the revenue sharing they have to give to the players. I understand that and agree with it as long as it's not something drastic like a 95% owners/ 5% players. Maybe something closer to 80% / 20%, I dunno. The point is the owners DO deserve to make most of the revenue. Players have their contracts. The seeming beef on this point though is the owners want to rollback player salaries drastically AND skew the revenue sharing in their favor as well. That is a little much.
It's not much of a secret that both sides are far apart in terms of negotiating a new CBA. The owners seem to be heavily committed to rolling back salaries significantly and wantign to institute a tougher team salary cap, amongst other things. The players claim to be willing to limit salaries, just not the drastic rollback the owners are demanding. They seem to say too they would be willing to lessen their revenue sharing as well, BUT not if the owners are going to rollback salaries as much as they want.
The league has made claims of losing like $300 Mil this season, but another point of contention is the players don;t buy that number. They have requested numerous times to see how the league came to that conclusion, but the league has yet to share that information. The players argue that this is a partnership, so the league should be willing to share all of its data. I would understand that POV. I believe the Players Union calculate calculated the financial loss to be more like $62Mil. I dont have that exact number though. But that is a huge discrepency.
Anyways, let me wrap this with a quote from a Mark Bartelstein in Marc Spears latest column. I found it very interesting. Of course Bartelstein is a player agent, so his natural bias should be understood, but regardless, it's a very good point.
“Just look at the proposal the owners have made: How do you expect anyone to respond to that in good faith?” agent Mark Bartelstein said. “It’s laughable. GMs around the league have acknowledged that to me. Every GM has acknowledged that there’s nowhere for the players to go with what’s been proposed by the owners.
“The system doesn’t work for the players now, because it’s so restrictive. It doesn’t work for the owners because they’ve made a lot of bad decisions. That’s the reality. This is a horrible system for the NBA player, incredibly restrictive in every way you look at it. If the NBA owners can’t be successful in this system, blame that on nothing but poor management.”
Henry Abbott from ESPN has an interesting article as well. 11 Thoughts About the End of the CBA. ESPN is a bunch of asshats, but every once in a while they do something ok.
Lastly, Mike Monroe of SA Express posted this column yesterday. It Only Gets Harder for Owners and Players
Here’s the truly bad news: Once the lockout begins, the standoff is going to get nastier.
According to NBA executives familiar with the league’s strategies, once the lockout is in place, the owners will push for a hard salary cap of $45 million, the elimination of guaranteed contracts and ask that the players swallow a 33 percent salary cut.
The concessions made in recent weeks, including the “flex cap” of $62 million and a guarantee of $2 billion in annual player payroll, will be off the table.
Now THAT would be some bullshit. I don't know what makes them think that sort of threat would work. I think the real problem is not so much Owners vs Players, but it's Owners vs Owners. These guys allow these shitty contracts because if they don't offer them, another team will. Those guys don't give a shit about each other! Someone is always willing to pay and that won't change. But blaming the players as if they should turn down contracts like that, man, that's just a pipe dream to say the least. It's not like these owners are struggling... dudes are multi-millionaires. BILLIONAIRES in some cases.
Anyways, I'm interested in what Posting & Toasting feels about all of this.