Tag: NBA lockout

Los Angeles Lakers Fisher speaks at a news conference alongside Executive Director of the NBA player's association Hunter in New York

NBA labor meetings rolling along with little word


If you’re desperately looking for good news out of the NBA labor talks, after nearly eight hours of negotiations on Friday there is almost no news out of the room.

No news may be good news, or at least a sign that the two sides have gotten serious. There have always seemed to be leaks out of the negotiations before, that is not the case on Friday. That may be good news. Or not. Kind of a “glass half full” thing.

Representatives of the NBA owners and players started meeting earlier in the week and, after a break for the Thanksgiving holiday, were back at it Friday. The goal is to have a deal in place at the start of next week so there can be NBA games on Christmas to kick off a 66-game season. The calendar is the real pressure on the two sides now.

One thing we do know about this Friday meeting is who is in the room. For the owners there is commissioner David Stern, deputy commissioner Adam Silver, Peter Holt (the Spurs owner), and attorneys Rick Buchanan and Dan Rube. For the players it is NBPA director Billy Hunter, NBPA president Derek Fisher, Maurice Evans, attorney Ron Klempner and economist Kevin Murphy.

Those are basically all the same people that have been in the room since July 1. Big gun players’ attorneys David Boies and Jeffry Kessler are not participating on Friday.

So it’s the same people arguing the same issues, essentially. The difference is one of semantics — technically this is a lawsuit settlement conference, not a collective bargaining agreement negotiations. There is no more NBA union since the Nov. 14 “disclaimer of interest.” Of course, it’s the same people arguing over the same things, just with a different name. Meet the new talks, same as the old talks.

Just with fewer leaks.

Shane Battier would like to stay in Memphis, but….

Memphis Grizzlies v Oklahoma City Thunder - Game One

You know those videos of a piranha feeding frenzy when a cow picks a poor time to walk across the Amazon? That is pretty much what the NBA free agency period will look like after the lockout.

Shane Battier is about to be one of those free agents.

Memphis wants to keep the band together after it’s playoff run last year, and told the Commercial Appeal — in a post primarily about how he blames both sides for the lockout, which is a logical and reasoned position, so expect him to be shunned by those involved — he’d consider it. But until he knows the rules, it’s hard to say where he lands.

“It’s unsettling to not know what the terms of the CBA will be,” said Battier, an unrestricted free agent. “What are the exceptions, who’ll be able to use these exceptions, what kind of cap? I have no idea where I can end up. When we do finally sign, it’s going to be chaos trying to go through the free agency period, and I’ll have to make a life decision (quickly).”

Battier said he’s hoping to get a three- or four-year deal.

“Memphis may be the best place to return to if teams are able to maintain (Larry) Bird rights,” Battier said. “… I want to be in a happy place. I want to go to work and enjoy it. When you go to work and you have a chance to win every night, your job is way better. That’s for any profession, but you want to have a role and be able to contribute to winning.”

How much is Memphis willing to pay Battier long term? They Grizzlies only have $37 million on the books for next season, but they are going to have to pay Marc Gasol big money (he is a restricted free agent). Would they give Battier a mid-level like deal for three years? Would he take that? Veterans who are good in the locker room and can defend are in demand, and in the frenzy who knows who will step up with offers.

I expect Battier will start the season with Memphis. Let’s just hope there is a season.

Dwyane Wade has dancing cameo in Cameron Diaz film

NBA basketball player Wade attends a showing of the Richard Chai Spring/Summer 2012 collection during New York Fashion Week
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Dwyane Wade can dance? Is he better than Metta World Peace?

He apparently was good enough — or at least famous enough — to get a dancing role in a movie. That nugget came out in a Palm Beach Post story about how busy Wade had been this offseason.

Into August. A GQ photo shoot in New York. His first adult basketball fantasy camp in Miami. Rehearsals and, after hosting Wade’s World weekend in Chicago, filming for a dancing cameo in the Cameron Diaz movie, What to Expect When You’re Expecting, which (Wade’s business manager Lisa) Joseph says was the most nervous she’s seen him.

Two concerns. First, again, Wade can dance?

Second, “What to Expect When You’re Expecting” the movie? With dancing? If you’re not familiar (which means you have no children) the book is kind of a ubiquitous practical guide on dealing with pregnancy. Pregnant women have a million questions, doctors spend about 30 seconds a visit with them, so you go to the book to see if that back pain is serious or normal.

How that makes a movie with dancing I have no idea. Maybe the name is the only tie in. All I know is I don’t want to see it, but I’m pretty sure I am not the target demographic. Still don’t know how Wade fits in to all that.