Blog Entry

Union wants meeting, but do hard-line owners?

Posted on: November 7, 2011 10:50 am
Edited on: November 7, 2011 11:31 am
NEW YORK -- Officials from the players' union would like to arrange one more round of bargaining with the league before Wednesday's deadline to accept the owners' latest proposal or face a far worse one, sources confirmed to Monday.

But there are fears on both sides that hard-line owners who aren't comfortable with the deal as it stands now will resist such a meeting because they prefer the 47 percent deal with a more restrictive salary cap -- the deal commissioner David Stern said Sunday would be on the table if the union rejected the existing proposal.

The delicate state of negotiations faced increasing pressure from hard liners on both sides Monday, with players and agents pushing for union decertification continuing to organize those efforts and hard-line owners believing this is the last chance for a more liberal proposal before they gain control.

"I think, at the end of the day, this group (of hard-line owners) said, 'OK, we will let you do it your way up until Wednesday,'" a person in contact with ownership told Monday.

If the players didn't accept by Wednesday, those owners would say, "We do a deal on our terms," the person said. 

In addition to a 47 percent share of revenues for the players and a flex cap, those terms also would include a relinquishing of guaranteed contracts and a rollback of existing salaries, sources familiar with the hard-line owners' position said.

The deal on the table for the players to accept by Wednesday includes a 50-50 split of revenues, which a significant number of mid-level players are believed to be amenable to and which superstar Kobe Bryant also would be willing to accept, reported. The proposal includes a band of 49-51 percent for the players, which union attorney Jeffrey Kessler characterized Sunday morning as "a fraud" because revenues would have to explode with 20 percent annual growth for the players ever to receive 51 percent. The union has proposed a 51-49 split in favor of the players, with 1 percent going to benefits for retired players.

It seems unlikely that the union would accept the current deal and recommend it to the players for a vote before Wednesday, but members of the executive committee were scheduled to speak Monday afternoon on a conference call to plot their next move ahead of a mandatory meeting of all 30 player reps Tuesday in New York. Union leaders' key objections center around system issues that they feel league negotiators did not go far enough in addressing during the most recent round of bargaining that led to Sunday morning's ultimatum. As reported, union negotiators feel that with a few tweaks to the remaining unresolved system issues, they would feel more comfortable recommending the proposal for a vote rather than risk having the process co-opted by radicals on both sides.

A successful decertification movement combined with the hard-line owners taking over with their 47 percent offer would throw the talks into chaos and imperil the entire 2011-12 season.

Some of the differences between the two sides' positions on outstanding system issues are so minor that fear is growing among a significant number of moderate agents who do not favor decertification that the season could be lost over issues that would have little impact on the financial state of the league and efforts to improve competitive balance. For example, the two sides are only 50 cents apart on the additional luxury tax that would be imposed for teams that spend up to $10 million over the tax line and have identical proposals for a $1 additional tax for teams that spend more than $10 million over.

The two sides' disagreement over whether tax-paying teams should be allowed to engage in sign-and-trade transactions also is largely irrelevant. According to a union source, there were only five transactions in which tax-payers took on a signed-and-traded player during the entire six-year CBA that expired July 1.

On two more key unresolved issues that the union views as paramount to an acceptable deal, the league already has met the players halfway. In the owners' existing proposal, teams that wade into the luxury tax would receive 50 percent of the tax payments foregone by making the move above the tax. And on mid-level contracts for tax-paying teams, the compromise proposed by the league calls for tax teams to be able to offer two-year deals starting at $2.5 million every other year. The union's most recent proposal called for four-year mid-level deals starting at $5 million for tax teams.

But efforts to close the gap on those final issues could be imperiled by the players' decertification movement and by intransigence among the original group of hard-line owners, who have tried in recent weeks to recruit more owners to their side. According to a person familiar with ownership dynamics, the so-called "original" hard-line teams were Atlanta, Charlotte, Cleveland, Milwaukee, Memphis, Philadelphia, Washington, Portland and Minnesota. There has been growing support in recent weeks for the hard-liners' position that Stern has given up too much in the negotiations -- thus, the ultimatum and subsequent shift to a more severe proposal if the players fail to accept the deal on the table by the close of business Wednesday.


Since: Jul 26, 2009
Posted on: November 7, 2011 4:29 pm

Union wants meeting, but do hard-line owners?

These thigs are getting paid way to much to play a game, and its the fans that ultimately pay. What a disgrace.

Since: Nov 7, 2011
Posted on: November 7, 2011 4:15 pm

Union wants meeting, but do hard-line owners?

Shame on CBS for allowing this racist piece of crap auburnislaughin to post this on their site.

Since: Mar 9, 2009
Posted on: November 7, 2011 3:50 pm

Union wants meeting, but do hard-line owners?

Where is the part where a father can carry his kids to a game without maxing out a credit card??? I hope they shut down forever. Please, Players, DO NOT accept this offer. Let's cancel this season and see how many of you crack heads go bankrupt. LOL. WAR EAGLE

Since: Aug 25, 2011
Posted on: November 7, 2011 3:41 pm

Union wants meeting, but do hard-line owners?

Do not care any more.    Best of luck to you Ken and to the millionaire players, rather EMPLOYEES, of the NBA !!!    Just bought a cap of the Cavaliers, my favorite team, with no number and took a jersey to Goodwill - because it has a player's name on the back.

I have to believe that Wilt and ALL the players who made the NBA what it had been are now rolling in their proverbial graves.................

Since: Sep 5, 2006
Posted on: November 7, 2011 3:15 pm

Union wants meeting, but do hard-line owners?


Seriously. Coutning all the articles thusfar, from end of season to now, there has been only one, providing true insight into the situation of extortion in the basketball talks...and you did not write it.

Unreal. You contradict yourself, usually within a week of posting an article, sometimes you can't wait to last that long, so do it within the context of a single article. Grow some balls, ask some questions. Quote some people. Find out why the owners are willing to start over with new would be amazed by the answer you get. That would be a better story...if you actually are connected, you know that a deal is not going to get done. 

Since: Dec 13, 2006
Posted on: November 7, 2011 2:56 pm

Union wants meeting, but do hard-line owners?

NBA just lost a fan, I've been a fan since 1988 and have alwasys loved the game, didnt care much about guys making money, owners making money or anything, i just loved the game and everything about the game.  However, with all this greedyness of the owners and players is just making me SICK.  Why dont you guys just do us a favor and FOLD the damn league, let's see how these guys will be making money, I know the owners will but the players will never make that money again.

Since: Oct 6, 2006
Posted on: November 7, 2011 12:32 pm

Union wants meeting, but do hard-line owners?

What do you expect? Without the NBA Berger doesn't have a job. So he just keeps writing, hoping CBs won't fire his fat @ss. Then again, with crappy writers like Prisco, Ratto, etc. on their staff, I doubt it matters.

Personally, I LOVE reading about the lockout, it's FAR more entertaining than any NBA season ever will be. I hope the lockout goes on forever.

Since: Oct 1, 2006
Posted on: November 7, 2011 12:15 pm

Union wants meeting, but do hard-line owners?

BY FAR, THE BEST NBA SEASON------------agreed.....

I don't miss the lame music played during games, as the players walk down the court to make it seem more interesting.

I don't miss announcers of the game that says "What they want to do is score"....

I don't miss most players taking 4 steps to get to the hoop, then watching 'touch fouls' called during a long NBA continuation move..

I don't miss players acting like they are 'thugs' for making a layup...

I don't miss the lame refereeing, and the NOW PROVEN rigged games..

At least the disagreements and arguing are entertaining....I'm hoping for decertification, long court battles, ppv boxing matches between owners and players, and infomercials by players selling their jerseys...

I'm also looking forward to all the strip-club arrests and outside bar fights, which inevitibly happen when these guys aren't playing basketball...

Since: Oct 10, 2011
Posted on: November 7, 2011 11:21 am
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