Blog Entry

NBA Lockout: The night before

Posted on: October 4, 2011 1:10 am
By Matt Moore

We've told you that previous meetings were relevant, were important, were key. And each one has yielded the same result: both sides sayng they were still too far apart, talks will resume tomorrow or in a few days. So forgive me for over-emphasizing this.

Tuesday's the day

Monday night, each set of parties will go to sleep in preparation of Tuesday's NBA lockout negotiations, which are expected to decide whether games will be lost and likely how many. The players will sleep comfortably. They'll have a measure of anxiety for their livelihoods and their careers, sure. But they'll be resting on 500 count sheets, unperturbed by any real consequences. Losing a few games just means an unpaid vacation. The game will be there when they get back. The agents will sleep the sleep of wolves. Knowing you're the thing that goes bump in the night has its advantages. The owners may be coming for their money, but this is a challenge to be thwarted, as is their perception that Billy Hunter has lost control of the fight. (The agents who are not part of the plot are just along for the ride, unfortunately.)

And the owners? The owners sleep the sleep of babes.

Maybe there really is a healthy conversation being held in the owners' meetings. Maybe they arrived at their hardened stance after hours and days of tense and lively debate over the best way to rectify the economic lapses in the system they signed off on. It's possible that they've really been down every road, listened to every argument, embraced every alternative until they were left with nothing but this, the scorched court policy.

But it doesn't seem that way, feel that way, or sound that way.

Every indication is that the owners go to sleep Monday night fully aware that they are likely setting the league back by upwars of a decade, that they are crushing something that bring joy to millions, that they are stomping on the legacy they inherited when they plunked down their change for the right to courtside seats and a number of player headaches. They are aware that their decision will cost people jobs they need, part-time money they need, diversions that make life more fun, and boost local economies. They are aware that there's no decent compromise they're seeking, only total and complete conquest in this dispute.

And every indication is that they could not care less. You have to look out for yourself in this world, apparently.

David Stern goes to sleep with the knowledge that Tuesday will bring with it a judgment upon his term as commissioner of a professional sports league. Failure to bring the owners off the fortress walls or to somehow shakedown the players into what will be a crushing deal for them would represent a phenomenal failure for Stern in his duties to, you know, run the NBA. He will have done his job in protecting the interests of his board and in doing so sacrificed the good the NBA brings with it. Not just from a sports perspective, or economic, but from the lost charity work, the goodwill, the positive influence on young people and every other impact. He will have watched over the league as it costs a year in the careers of promising young athletes like Blake Griffin and John Wall, as it robs history of one of the final years of Kobe Bryant and Kevin Garnett.

Big king-sized beds for men of wealth and fame, all.

Tuesday the sun comes up, the gloves come off and the lockout will sort them out. Odds are we're headed towards regular season games missed, maybe months, maybe the entire year, along with a lengthy court battle, ugly internal strife in the union, and no professional basketball. It's difficult to see any other result coming out of the boardroom tomorrow in New York. Even the optimists like Ken Berger are staring down the barrel of missed games. Cooler heads have not prevailed. Reason has not won out. It's Lord of the Flies time in the NBA Lockout and we're about to find out how ugly it will get. 

Rome is burning but the Roman Senate sleeps soundly.  

Since: Oct 4, 2011
Posted on: October 4, 2011 12:14 pm

NBA Lockout: The night before

I am a season’s ticket holder since the first year of the Miami Heat.  In this economy I wouldn't mind half the season being canceled, except it affects our economy in so many ways in South Florida.  People that work the games depend on a second income as well as those that get extra hours at local restaurants and bars etc. I will only trust that the majority of owners loose money, if they allow their books to be opened to the public.  This way we could see the names of those on the payroll, as well as see other "game related" expenditures such as hotels, meals, airfare, etc.  If everything is on the up and ups, and some teams’ consistently loose money then, the owners should move to a model the owners share revenue of home games evening the financial hardship on markets that draw less fans etc., or let those that loose money close their businesses.

Since: Feb 28, 2008
Posted on: October 4, 2011 10:32 am

NBA Lockout: The night before

To tell the truth, the best thing that could happen is a serious, painful "shake-up" for the NBA, owners, players and, We didn't learn in 1998 with the previous lockout how important and valuable the game of basketball is to the average fan. The collective parties have taken that for granted... We buy the tickets, we tune in to watch, we buy the jerseys... The game is "ours"... Give it back... 

Wait... fix it first... Step back and look at basketball. It is a game. A beautiful game. Look and see that it's a team sport. It's been pulled apart by greed. Greed on the part of agents, owners, players, and, yes, greed on the part of fans...  Take the greed out of the equation and you will fix the game.

We will miss basketball, but it's worth the wait...

Since: Oct 4, 2011
Posted on: October 4, 2011 10:07 am

NBA Lockout: The night before

OK we get it - but do not forget the fans are the ones who are the boss here. We pay both of you! Go ahead and mess up owners/players we will never forgive you and let the real lock out begin - the fans will not come and see you play or pay!

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