Every day we have some posturing news to report — “big name player X is really serious about playing in Europe/China next year” — but as for actual progress to end the NBA lockout….
That’s not getting any better in the near future, reports Sam Amick at Sports Illustrated. The two sides are not even really talking. The players union is working to solidify its ranks rather than push for a deal yet.
While mid-level staffers from both sides met on Friday to finalize the numbers related to basketball-related income (BRI) for the 2010-11 season, no negotiating sessions involving commissioner David Stern or NBPA executive director Billy Hunter have been scheduled. Sources said the BRI numbers were not finalized Friday and more similar sessions are forthcoming to that end, but the union is focused on fortifying from within rather than exchange proposals with the owners who are pushing for a hard salary cap as part of a drastic overhaul to the current system.
The union is going to have a series of meetings around the nation tell players how things are going in negotiations and fortify the walls around their fortress.
It’s going to be a month from now before we see the two sides start to feel any pressure and start to sit down and really talk. The actual deadline to save the entire season is more like the end of September. Expect these talks to follow the arc of the NFL negotiations — there was a whole lot of posturing until it got to the point where camps could be closed and games lost, then the two sides have moved toward a deal. The real NBA negotiations are to come.
But we still have plenty of posturing to tell you about.