Last week, NBA commissioner David Stern said that the owners were making their final offer to the players before they would really begin to turn the knife on them. The offer featured a core basketball related income split of 50-50, which is, of course, down from the 57-43 split that the players enjoyed under the last CBA. The players were already willing to give money back to the owners, as the union stood firm with an offer of 53-47. That’s why it really came as no surprise today that the union rejected that offer and will now disband.
Long story short, the season is basically over.
“The players feel they’re not prepared to accept any ultimatum,” NBPA executive director Billy Hunter said. “We think it’s extremely unfair to give (players the ultimatum) that they accept (the owners’) proposal or roll back to 47%” from a 50-50 split of basketball-related income.
“We have negotiated in good faith for over two years,” Hunter said. “But the players just felt they have given enough, that the NBA was not prepared to negotiate, that things were not going to get better.”
(Via USA Today)
It’s going to take a miracle for there to be a season now, which is very unfortunate for the fans, arena employees and people in hospitality jobs that are directly linked to the existence of these franchises. I wouldn’t say it’s out of the realm of possibility that a “hero” will step forward and save this thing in dramatic fashion, but the owners and Stern certainly don’t care. They just want what they’ve wanted all along – to take the players out behind the woodshed. As for the players, it’s very disappointing how poorly they’ve handled the PR all this time. I mean, look at this interview that Larry Hughes just did for Delux Magazine. Am I supposed to feel bad for that?
I might be burying this season a little prematurely, but I doubt it. It’s a shame, because I was really looking forward to making fun of the Miami Heat soon. :(