Archive: November, 2011
The NBA is in jeopardy.
How do I know this? Because, unlike the majority of sports fans, I've been paying way too much attention to the current labor unrest. On Monday in New York, the whole "collective bargaining" situation blew up. The NBA Player's Association has dissolved, claiming unfair labor practices by the NBA and its owners. NBA commissioner David Stern responded to this announcement by saying the union's decision to dissolve was a "magic trick" that certainly wouldn't work in the courts. Stern and his owners said the union has long threatened something like this, which would make the move to dissolve nothing more than an attempt to gain leverage, not a legitimate claim that the courts will uphold. (Here's yesterday's post, if you're not yet caught up: Union rejects offer.)
Stern also dropped some hyperbole after hearing about the union's actions. "We're about to go into the nuclear winter of the NBA," he said.
To follow this saga live, up-to-the-minute, click here: Deep Sixer.
The NBA Player's Association has rejected the NBA's most recent proposal. The union has elected to file a disclaimer and take the NBA to court.
The 2011-12 NBA season is now in serious jeopardy. The union has elected to dissolve and file a lawsuit against the NBA for unfair labor practices. Union president Derek Fisher and chief Billy Hunter said the disclaimer would be filed within a day or two.
This morning in NYC, the NBA Player's Association is meeting with NBA players and reps from the league's 30 teams. The union is sitting down with the league's player representatives, and any players who made the trip to New York, to outline in detail the league's current collective bargaining proposal.
It's expected that the players will make a preliminary decision on the deal. The players will likely announce that they're taking this current deal to a player-wide vote or they'll announce that they're rejecting the deal outright. If the players take this deal to a vote, the proposal would need majority support among the league's 450 players. If the players reject the deal, it's likely they'll explore the process of beginning decertification.
NBA commissioner David Stern delivered to the union a revised proposal on Thursday. Stern has said the owners are done negotiating. Stern has also said that if the players reject this current deal, the NBA will return to a "reset" deal that includes an offer of 47 percent of basketball related income (not 50-50) and other stricter system regulations.
The NBA has delivered to the NBA Player's Association its "last, best" offer. The union will take this proposal back to its player representatives to determine if it's good enough to put before the league's 450 players for a vote.
Union chief Billy Hunter and president Derek Fisher said the union will meet with the 30 player representatives -- one from each team -- on either Monday or Tuesday of next week. At that time, the union will outline the NBA's revised proposal to the player reps to see if enough movement was made to warrant a vote.
The proposal would need a majority vote from both NBA owners and NBA players to be ratified. NBA commissioner David Stern confirmed that he had approval from his side to pass the current proposal.
To receive live updates from the NBA lockout, please follow here: Deep Sixer.
The NBA and the NBA Player's Association met Wednesday for approximately 12 hours in New York.
The end result? They've agreed to continue meeting on Thursday at noon.
The NBA Player's Association and representatives from each of the league's 30 teams met today inside a New York hotel. The meeting was scheduled to begin around 1 p.m. (although reports indicated it officially began around 1:45) and it ended at approximately 4:30.
The news coming from the meeting wasn't promising for those hoping for a deal. Union president Derek Fisher said, "We wanted to make it clear that our players are here to handle really serious business for our fans, our cities ... they want us to get back to work ... but they don't want us to be shortsighted and get a deal done just to say we got a deal done today and regret it five or 10 years from now."
Essentially, Fisher said that all of the player representatives supported the union's initial decision to reject the NBA's current proposal.
The NBA and the NBA Player's Association met for approximately 10 hours on Saturday inside a New York hotel. Many sources in and around the talks made it clear progress was being made toward agreeing to a deal, but when the two sides finally stopped negotiating, it seemed everyone was standing at the edge of a cliff.
NBA commissioner David Stern painted this picture: the federal mediator had made numerous suggestions. The NBA adopted the majority of those suggestions and told the union it would have until midnight on Wednesday to accept the deal on the table. There are no additional meetings scheduled between now and that deadline. Once that deadline passed, Stern made it very clear the NBA's offer would change dramatically -- for the worse.
"[We] told the players we would put those in writing so they could be understood and transparent to both sides and that we hoped they would accept it and we would be amenable to making a deal on that basis until Wednesday at the close of business," Stern said. "If we're unable to make a deal on those terms by the close of business on Wednesday, we will be making a new proposal which we will also share very soon with the players in writing, which is multifaceted. For purposes of this press conference, suffice it to say it will be a 47% proposal and a flex cap and lots of other issues that you have become familiar with in the course of these negotiations."
The NBA and the NBA Player's Association will resume labor negotiations on Saturday. We'll be staking out the negotiations this weekend in New York, so follow on Twitter for instant updates: Deep Sixer.
The two sides haven't met since last Friday when three days of sessions, totaling 30 hours, ended abruptly when discussion of the split of basketball revenue sent the labor negotiations into a tailspin. Much has happened in the week since, most of it about internal issues within the union (read Jason Whitlock's story here: Fisher in Stern's back pocket? Disclaimer before reading the article: one must follow the TV show "The Wire").
I'll be at the Wells Fargo Center tonight covering the Flyers vs. New Jersey Devils, but starting with Saturday's return to the bargaining table, I'll be back (and hopeful and optimistic for a deal) on the NBA beat.