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.
On Saturday night, NBA owners issued the union an ultimatum: accept the deal on the table by Wednesday or the subsequent deals will get worse. The union, already discussing collecting signatures for a decertification vote, said the NBA's proposal wasn't even worthy of bringing to its membership for a vote. In the two days since, word from the league's 450 players has been mixed: some seem in favor of rejecting the proposal and discussing decertification, while others believe the proposal should be brought before the players for a vote. In order to pass the current proposal as the league's next collective bargaining agreement, the proposal would need to receive a majority vote.
On Tuesday, the union made it clear there would be no vote on this current proposal.
Union chief Billy Hunter said that the player representatives, having been informed of the proposal's specifics, are clearly of the mind that it's an unacceptable proposal. Hunter said the players have authorized the board to continue negotiating and continue compromising to try to save the season, but that this specific proposal could not be accepted. Hunter made it clear the 30 player representatives have authorized additional compromise with the NBA, if the NBA is willing to bargain before the Wednesday deadline of 5 p.m.
"We're unified," Hunter said.
Hunter said he'd be calling Stern in hopes the NBA would be willing to bargain before Wednesday's deadline.
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