Out in Las Vegas for the past couple of weeks at the Impact Compeitive Training Series (affectionately known as the “lockout league”), it has been about NBA players staying in shape for the start of the season, sharpening their game, getting in some run.
Now everybody will have a lot longer to hone that edge. Friday the training camps and preseason games guys were working out for will be postponed, with the league cancelling everything through Oct. 15.
The reaction of several players seemed to be “we knew this was coming.”
“If you didn’t expect to miss any games, then you haven’t been prepared, you haven’t been listening,” said Suns forward Jared Dudley. “We’ve talked to (union director) Billy Hunter, we’ve talked to everyone. This has been planned for three or four years, (the owners) knew it, right when it was time to deal they weren’t going to do this.
“They want us to miss checks. They want us to feel the burn. We knew this.”
Across the country at the University of Connetticut, Celtics sharpshooter Ray Allen echoed that sentiment, saying that he would be willing to give up a full season to get a fair deal. Rashard Lewis said basically the same thing Wednesday.
“Our thing is you have to to have a stance,” Dudley said. “It’s not like we’re not willing to give back. We just want the split to be somewhat fair… We have our line, the line we’re not going to cross, and if that means missing a season we might as well miss a season anyway because they are talking 40 percent cuts. If you’re talking 40 percent, everyone could miss two years.”
Both sides of the labor talks seem to have dug in, meanwhile fans who just wanted to watch games — and were willing to pay to do it — will be the losers.