David Falk is right. He went a little Dave Mason on us, but he’s right.
It’s not that hard for most of us to imagine an NBA labor deal getting done because we can see the middle ground pretty clearly. We can all pretty much guess where a deal will land. But yet, both sides are dug in ready to fight and the only people happy about this are law firms who get paid by the hour.
In talking with the Fan 590 in Toronto — hey, I was on that station this weekend, too — Falk said he could get a deal done in a day (via Sports Radio Interviews). And he basically described the lockout in Dave Mason lyrics: “There ain’t no good guys, there ain’t no bad guys, there’s just you and me and we just disagree.”
“There are no bad guys. I think that the owners are trying to change a system that they feel isn’t working. Obviously there’s a number of teams losing money. … The players are reluctant to give up gains made over a long period of time. So there are no bad guys. This is a difficult challenge, but this is what you hire agents for… The agent for the owners is David Stern … and the agent for the players is Billy Hunter. It’s their job, collectively, to get a deal done. … We all lose if there’s no deal.”
“I volunteered. I’ve given both sides very, very specific suggestions on how to get over the hurdle. … I think that I could make this deal in one day, with either party. I really do. I know it sounds egotistical saying that, but I know all the owners well. … Obviously I’ve represented players for 37 years. … I’m disappointed that the young stars of the NBA today, the LeBron James, Kobe Bryant, Dwyane Wade, Dwight Howard, those guys need to be involved full-time, not part-time. … I think that they are allowing other people to determine their future financial fortunes, which is a terrible mistake.”
Kobe Bryant is one of the young stars of today? His knees would beg to differ.
Remember this is David Falk the agent that helped lead a splinter group of players in 1995 to try and force decertification of the union. This is the guy who was a behind the scenes guiding hand in 1998 — the last lockout — who wanted to hold the CBA up to allow bigger deals for superstars, or at least that is what David Stern accused him of doing.
It’s pretty safe to question how fair a Falk brokered deal would really be — agents are not at the bargaining table for a reason, they often are not looking out for the best interests of all players. But could he get one done in a day? I think a lot of people could speed the negotiations up from where they are now.