And to the joy and relief of us all, there is again an NBA players’ union.
Actually, if you want to see NBA games on Christmas, it’s a good thing that a majority of NBA players voted to reform the union. Actually, well over a majority, with more than 300 of the roughly 450 members sending back forms.
The union dissolved as the players’ negotiating body Nov. 14 when it filed a disclaimer of interest. The union needed to reform to negotiate the details of the new Collective Bargaining Agreement. (What David Stern and Billy Hunter agreed to as a framework of the deal was technically the settlement of the antitrust lawsuits players filed against the league.)
The unionized players are expected to ratify the new CBA next week, in time for training camps to open Dec. 9.
Then games resume on Christmas Day.
The Cavs are shorthanded in the backcourt right now, with Kyrie Irving still out and Iman Shumpert sidelined for up to three months. Yahoo’s Marc Spears reports that they’re bringing in former Temple guard Dionte Christmas, who played for the Suns in 2013-14:
In 31 games for the Suns two seasons ago, Christmas averaged 2.3 points and 1.2 rebounds in 6.4 minutes per game. He probably won’t get very many minutes if he makes the Cavs’ final roster, but there’s a chance they’ll keep him around on a non-guaranteed deal until Irving and Shumpert are healthy, just to have another body in the backcourt.
LeBron James sat out the Cavs’ preseason game against the Sixers on Thursday night, but Cleveland still held the lead for all but the final 5.4 seconds. Then, Sixers rookie Scottie Wilbekin did this:
Wilbekin, who played college ball at Florida, has a chance to earn legitimate minutes for the Sixers this season as they try to find young talent on the cheap. This is a good start.