NEW YORK — Saying you’re going to do something and then actually doing it are two entirely different things. Take, for instance, how the NBA Owners and the NBA Player’s Union were going to “talk” and try and reach and agreement on the expired CBA.
They said they were going to try and reach an agreement.
Then the NBA as a league was saying they are expecting a lockout to occur starting officially at Midnight EDT on Friday.
Those fears have now been realized.
Deputy Comissioner Adam Silver said the two sides have failed to reach an agreement on a salary issue in which the Players Union is calling for a $7 million average. The current average is $5 million.
“I’m not scared, but resigned to potential damage this could cause to our league,” NBA Commissioner David Stern said.
The two sides described the meeting on Thursday to be cordial, and they actually agreed on one thing. Both sides agreed that the rift between them is too large and the issues too crucial for them to resolve it all by the Midnight deadline.
While the fact that both sides weren’t bickering like a couple in divorce court is somewhat settling, the fact of the matter is the issue has become so swollen that a lockout is necessary.
“Now let’s get down to business,” said players union chief Billy Hunter. “We are trying to arrive at a win-win for both sides.”
There is a stark difference, though, for those who are trying to directly relate the NBA lockout to that which is occurring in the NFL. While the NFL Owners and the NFLPA are fighting over profits, David Stern has indicated the NBA is going to be doing the exact opposite.
Stern told reporters that last season the league collectively lost as much as $300 million and that although some markets had a good year, as many as 17 of the NBA’s 30 teams were in the red in 2010-11. Stern wants player cost-cutting to be the solution while Hunter says there are other ways.
Those ways have not yet publicly been stated.
Although Stern is brushing off the fears of a shortened 2011-12 season due to this lockout, it is still a great possibility. The previous work stoppage occurred in 1998-99 pushing the start date of that particular season back from October to the beginning of February.
When this current labor dispute will be resolved is still uncertain. The only thing that is set in stone is that as of now, the National Basketball Association is in a lockout.