The countdown clock reads 13 days until the NBA’s owners lock the players out. And if you weren’t sure before, you should be now that the clock will reach zero.
After the two sides met for more than four-and-a-half hours in a Manhattan hotel Friday both sides left the room saying they were nowhere near a deal. Look at these tweets from Ken Berger of CBS Sports.
“We’re not on the same page right now,” Melo said.
After a 4 1-2 hour session with what Melo called “a lot of good dialogue,” but little movement, another session scheduled for Tuesday.
The owners made what they see as a concession — they backed off their demand for non-guaranteed contracts for players. However, the players are not seeing that as much of a concession since they already have guaranteed contracts.
And that folks was the best news to come out of the meeting.
The hard cap — which the owners are pushing hard for and the players are resisting equally as hard — remains a key sticking point. Although at the end of the day the big issue is Basketball Related Income (BRI) — currently players get 57 percent of that and the owners want a larger slice of that pie. Reportedly the players are willing to give a little here, but how much remains the question (and is that giveback only on new revenue)?
Carmelo Anthony and Chris Paul attended this meeting (two players with a lot at stake in terms of team building in the next Collective Bargaining Agreement). This was also well attended by owners.
Players said that both sides are making an effort to reach a deal and you can bet there will be a lot of meetings between now and June 30 when the current CBA expires. Both sides will put on a good show.
I keep saying it and I’ll do it again — negotiations don’t get done until there is real pressure on one or both sides to compromise (seriously compromise, not making a new demand then taking it off the table). While the lockout starts July 1 there is no real pressure to make a deal until late August or September, when games become threatened. That’s when the threat of lost paychecks and revenue puts pressure on both sides.
Both sides are talking to each other still. Both sides get the stakes of a lockout at a time the league is having a resurgence of popularity. But all fans can hope for is games not to be lost — and Ray Allen fears that will happen.