Dan Feldman

OAKLAND, CA - NOVEMBER 09:  Draymond Green #23 of the Golden State Warriors reacts after making a shot against the Dallas Mavericks at ORACLE Arena on November 9, 2016 in Oakland, California. NOTE TO USER: User expressly acknowledges and agrees that, by downloading and or using this photograph, User is consenting to the terms and conditions of the Getty Images License Agreement.  (Photo by Ezra Shaw/Getty Images)
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Draymond Green: New CBA doesn’t do enough for low-end players

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Draymond Green appeared unhappy with the new Collective Bargaining Agreement, and he revealed why he gave that impression.

He’s unhappy with the new Collective Bargaining Agreement.

The Warriors forward elaborated on his dissatisfaction with the new deal. He stressed two major points:

  • He’s not complaining on behalf of himself. He doesn’t believe he should earn more – and even indicates he, as a star, should earn less.
  • He has no issue with the Basketball Related Income split. Owners and players will continue to split revenue about 50-50.

So what are his problems?

Green, via Anthony Slater of The Mercury News:

It’s about me being frustrated for other guys. When we go in these negotiations, guys are overlooked. I think it’s more about helping these guys be in better standing than what it is for an All-Star or top two or three guys on a team. Those guys will always be taken care of.

It’s not even necessarily that it’s a higher minimum salary. There could be different structure to have not as many minimum players. Right now, there’s like a max and a minimum and a couple in between. I think there could be different structures to help those minimum guys make more and not be a minimum player.

Because without all 15 guys, yeah, you can be an All-Star, you can be a nice player. But without these guys, you can’t practice, you can’t get a sub, you can’t go through 82 games playing 48 minutes a game. If you get hurt, nobody’s there to step in for you. Every guy matters and I think every guy should be taken care of in the grand scheme of things.

My complaint is not one of everybody is not making a good living. It’s that there is a good living in this for everyone, but for some it can be better. How do we help elevate those guys who are on the lower end of the totem pole? I think that should always be a focus. That’s my argument. It’s not to come off as everybody is not living good. No. You’re living pretty good if you’re in the NBA. I don’t want someone to look at me and say that I am inconsiderate about everyone else’s life outside the NBA. I grew up in a household where my mom made $16,000 a year. I know the struggle. I know how to keep those things in perspective and I do keep it into perspective. But I do look at things in a business standpoint and I do understand how much money is going around the NBA on a year to year basis. Within that realm of how much money is going around, you can elevate those guys.”

I don’t want to be this guy that tries to raise this awareness that makes us go into a lockout and makes fans miss a game. I don’t think that’s always necessary either. At the same time, I think some guys in this league can be better taken care of. I want to be a voice for them. To help them be better taken care of.

Green is right. The new CBA definitely benefits stars.

But it also creates 60 new player jobs in the form of two-way contracts, increases minimum salaries to a historically normal percentage of revenue after they dipped this season and expands retirements benefits that are particularly important to low-paid players.

Green is directing his criticism at his fellow star players. By approving the BRI split, Green is accepting how money is divided between owners and players. He just dislikes how players will divvy up their share.

Interestingly, Golden State teammates Stephen Curry and Andre Iguodala are vice presidents in the union that helped put together the CBA, and Green is the Warriors’ player representative. But as he said, Green isn’t upset enough to oppose ratification. So, voicing his concerns can serve only as an attempt to alter the long-term paradigm.

It’s important to remember stars have already made concessions. The existence of an individual maximum salary ensures stars earn less than a free market would dictate, leaving more money for other players. That’s a practical necessity in a league where sub-star players easily outrank stars and each player gets a vote on the CBA.

Maybe highly paid players could give back more. Green obviously thinks so. But the last three CBAs have helped mediocre players at the expense of stars. The new one will continue to help mediocre players with the additional concessions coming from the middle class.

Woman reportedly at nightclub with Matt Barnes and DeMarcus Cousins arrested

WASHINGTON, DC - NOVEMBER 28: DeMarcus Cousins #15 and Matt Barnes #22 of the Sacramento Kings talk on the floor against the Washington Wizards at Verizon Center on November 28, 2016 in Washington, DC. NOTE TO USER: User expressly acknowledges and agrees that, by downloading and or using this photograph, User is consenting to the terms and conditions of the Getty Images License Agreement.  (Photo by Rob Carr/Getty Images)
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New York police were reportedly close to arresting Matt Barnes for his role in a nightclub fight.

First, the police arrested a woman who was allegedly at the club with Barnes and Kings teammate DeMarcus Cousins.

Larry Celona and Daniel Prendergast of the New York Post:

Laura Closure, 42, was arrested Wednesday at an apartment on West 20th Street and charged with two counts of assault with intent to cause physical injury during the fight at Avenue Nightclub on 10th Ave. and W. 18th St. earlier this month, police said.

Police say she smashed a 27-year-old woman in the face with a glass and punched another 21-year-old woman in the head during the Dec. 5 incident.

She was at the club with Sacramento Kings players Barnes and Cousins when things turned violent.

There are conflicting accounts of the incident.

Jasmine Besiso and Myrone Powell have sued Barnes and Cousins for their roles.

Cavaliers present Matthew Dellavedova with championship ring, mob him in celebration (video)

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That very cool thing the Cavaliers did with Timofey Mozgov? They did it with Matthew Dellavedova tonight.

Mozgov (Lakers) and Dellavedova (Bucks) left Cleveland this offseason, meaning they weren’t around to get championship rings on opening night. But the organization, especially the Cavs players, made sure to show their appreciation.

Considering how many rings the Cavaliers handed out, I wonder whether Joe Harris – who was traded last January – gets similar treatment when the Nets visit Cleveland on Friday.

Report: NBA owners unanimously approve new Collective Bargaining Agreement

CLEVELAND, OH - OCTOBER 25:  Owner Dan Gilbert of the Cleveland Cavaliers speaks to NBA Commissioner Adam Silver as he receives his championship ring before a game against the New York Knicks at Quicken Loans Arena on October 25, 2016 in Cleveland, Ohio.   NOTE TO USER: User expressly acknowledges and agrees that, by downloading and or using this photograph, User is consenting to the terms and conditions of the Getty Images License Agreement. (Photo by Ezra Shaw/Getty Images)
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The NBA and National Basketball Players Association union agreed to a new Collective Bargaining Agreement.

But that’s not to say their constituents agreed.

Owners and players still needed to ratify the agreement.

One group down.

Jon Krawczynski and Tim Reynolds of the Associated Press:

A new labor deal in the NBA is on the verge of being finalized, after owners voted Wednesday to approve a proposed seven-year collective bargaining agreement that was tentatively agreed to last week.

The owners’ vote was unanimous and players are expected to finish casting their ballots in the coming days, two people with direct knowledge of the situation told The Associated Press. They spoke on condition of anonymity because neither the NBA nor the National Basketball Players Association has revealed specifics about the voting process publicly.

Teams met by teleconference on Wednesday to discuss and approve the proposed deal. Players were recently emailed information about the CBA from the union and were intending to have their ratification vote completed electronically by Friday, one of the people involved told AP.

This was mostly inevitable. With just 30 owners and everyone eager to keep the cash coming, NBA commissioner Adam Silver had a clear understanding of how to represent owners at the negotiating table.

With about 450 players in the league, they won’t be quite so united. But it’d still be shocking if they don’t also approve the deal. It could even be unanimous on their end. (Don’t confuse a unanimous vote, including the owners’, with unanimous approval. Sometimes, when dissenting voters know they’ll lose, they vote yes because they value a unified front over a protest vote.)

Really, the sides are just ratifying a term sheet. Even once that is approved, it must be turned into a legal document. But ratifying the actual CBA once the term sheet is approved is even more of a foregone conclusion than ratifying the term sheet.

Cheery DeMarcus Cousins greets media: ‘Hey, friends. Man, I missed you guys’ (video)

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Both the Kings and DeMarcus Cousins have a bad habit of compounding their problems.

Go through a small rough patch with the star player injured? Fire the beloved coach.

Build a poor team with limited ability to upgrade? Trade an unprotected first-round pick and multiple pick swaps to clear cap space.

Suffer a bad call? Complain until referees call a technical foul.

But Cousins took a refreshingly different approach last night. After getting fined $50,000 for his media interactions, Cousins was warm and cheerful in his first group interview that included outlets he previous feuded with.

It doesn’t hurt that Sacramento won, and Cousins blew off steam in his postgame on-court interview with a team-affiliated reporter. We’ll see whether Cousins maintains this new approach, especially after losses.

For one night, though, Cousins endeared himself in a constructive way.