Blog Entry

Harden says his drop-dead number is 53 percent

Posted on: October 10, 2011 12:10 am
Posted by Royce Young

The league and players wrapped a five-plus hour meeting in New York Sunday in a last-ditch effort to save the start of the NBA regular season. How'd it go?

No comment. Evidently.

The biggest hangup between the two sides is current the Basketball Related Income split. The players have said they're firm at 53 percent while the owners are pushing for a 50-50 split. A good number of players are in Los Angeles playing in the Goodman-Drew rematch and spoke with a few and guess what they talked about. James Harden, and his beard, basically put it this way: It's 53 percent or nothing.
Harden falls squarely into the first camp. Prior to the game, the Thunder guard said he wouldn't rubber stamp a proposal, even if he received a personal call from union president Derek Fisher.

"I'd want to know what the deal is," Harden said. "Derek is someone you definitely listen to, but I'd also want to talk with the big guys -- LeBron, KD, and the rest."

Asked if he could see any scenario where a 50-50 split in basketball-related income (BRI) would be acceptable, Harden shook his head.

What's your drop-dead number?

"Fifty-three," Harden insisted. "No less."
Will it be 53? Who knows. We'll find out more by Monday after the players and league wrap another meeting. You'd have to think the players would be willing to come off that number to a degree in order to get a deal.

And like Harden conceded, he's not exactly involved all that heavily in the talks. He admitted that he'd defer to the bigger names involved like LeBron, Kevin Durant and others.

Harden's sentiment is sort of the battle Fisher and Billy Hunter are battling right now though. They desperately want to make a deal, but they can't feel like they've let down players like Harden. Those that are trenched into their position and are convinced that wavering is a bad thing wouldn't be happy with a 50-50 compromise out of nowhere. So Fisher has to please his base while at the same time getting a deal that works.

Such is a nasty negotiation like this.
Category: NBA

Since: Feb 9, 2008
Posted on: October 12, 2011 4:20 am

Harden says his drop-dead number is 53 percent

I think that I will not really miss the NBA. I do not like the gangsta style of play, the long droppy shorts, the palming of the ball is terrible now-a-days along with what should be obvious traveling, the leagues leftist anti-gun attitude
/policy is an infringement against the right to self defense and civil liberty and drafting players out of high school without any limits is disgraceful. I am not from the ghetto and do not care for "the hood" influence on the game. I miss the original Dream Team players style of play and the time before that when basketball was actually meant to be a non-contact sport played with skill and not foul mouthed trash talk and brawler type play. 

Since: Dec 24, 2006
Posted on: October 11, 2011 11:40 pm

Harden says his drop-dead number is 53 percent

What a joke.  The NBA is a bunch of thugs, and you need no further evidence than taking a look at the annual Allstar game.  When it was in Vegas, the POLICE refused to patrol the Strip...seriously, it was a complete goon show.   These guys are a broken ankle away from prison or a life of crime for the most part.  They've put up exactly zero dollars of their own money to fund the league, and as a result have exactly zero risk.  They should be thanking their lucky stars that they get the insane salaries they currently are afforded.  The game of basketball has deteriorated so badly that our nation's best players routinely get schooled on the international stage by players who individually are not in the same league in terms of skill.  A farce.  

I say fire everyone who wants to stay on strike, hold open tryouts and you'd get hungrier, grittier and much more fan-friendly personnel on the court.  I know that the idea is as much of a farce as the strike, but I think the vast majority of fans are shaking their heads at these clowns...the players that is.  That said, this whole thing is taking on a racial see the people interviewed and every single person of color is pro-player and the white folks have had it with BOTH sides.  The truth hurts. 

Since: Sep 19, 2011
Posted on: October 11, 2011 8:07 pm

Harden says his drop-dead number is 53 percent

The problem is that the player don't see themselves as employees, it more like the players feel that they are partners with the NBA. The best way to look at a player is that they are Independent contractor

Since: Nov 21, 2006
Posted on: October 11, 2011 6:40 pm

Harden says his drop-dead number is 53 percent

Yaaawwwwnnn. Then drop dead Harden...and take the NBA attitude with you.

Since: Oct 25, 2008
Posted on: October 11, 2011 5:54 pm

Harden says his drop-dead number is 53 percent

50 to 50 is fair . Don't you ...

Since: Oct 11, 2011
Posted on: October 11, 2011 5:51 pm

Harden says his drop-dead number is 53 percent

I see all these comments about other sales jobs not paying 50% to their employees but what we are all failing to realize is that the NBA is not the commodity, the players are. They are the draw not the league. If it was just about basketball then 50/50 would be unfair but they are talking about much more than that.... Why should a star player be paid 15 million a year to fill an arena at $50 plus average per ticket and then allow an owner to exploit his name to earn additional revenue on jerseys,caps,t-shirts ect. ....the last I checked the nba didn't sell 2 million cuban jerseys worldwide...... 53% is a gift and the owners should give it up but also have some kind of cap where the salaries for the average players aren't in the ridiculous range....I remember when some idiot owner paid dwayne shintsus 1million per season...In reality I could care less if they settle or not....the play has deterioated so much that I can hardly stand to watch the game anymore but the owners have dug themselves into this hole and they can't find the shovel to dig themselves out

Since: Nov 7, 2006
Posted on: October 11, 2011 5:25 pm

Harden says his drop-dead number is 53 percent

I'm ready coach. I'm 5'10 white, can't jump but deadly from outside 18 feet. I currently work as a teacher making 60k per year. They can't give me a raise and can't fire me. Just waiting here till tryouts for an NBA team open up. I feel real bad for those guys not having a job. NBA could die tomorrow and I'd still watch NCAA. Wait did the NBA cancel the last 10 seasons???? I can't remember watching a $hitty, unorganized farce of a game for that long.

Since: Feb 16, 2008
Posted on: October 11, 2011 4:55 pm

Harden says his drop-dead number is 53 percent

I think the owners are in a bad position. While the players would take a substantial salary hit to play overseas, those jobs DO exist. And for the majority of players who likely won't have extended careers in the NBA, the lost salary will be replaced by longer careers. The big earners and players who won't go overseas have the most to lose here. But that seems like the minority.

The owners, however, could see the NBA become an also-ran basketball league, with untalented players to match its undisciplined style of play. That would be a disaster, and could spell the end of the NBA as we know it. It seems like they need this deal worse than the players. And nobody buys that they really lost $300 million. The figure doesn't count all sorts of revenue streams. Give the players the 53%. 

Since: Oct 11, 2011
Posted on: October 11, 2011 4:25 pm

Harden says his drop-dead number is 53 percent

coming from a big nba fan ive had enough of these guys,who ever heard of the employees making  more than the owners,cmon 50 '50 is fair,take it or cancel the season no one wants to listen to these guys.

Since: Apr 3, 2007
Posted on: October 11, 2011 4:17 pm

Harden says his drop-dead number is 53 percent

The owners should bring over all the players who have lost jobs to the NBA players going over to Europe etc.

Or put a load of 3rd rate college players who couldn't even get a gig overseas in Knicks gear and i'd be shouting them on. I follow my team not the players. If a player goes to another team?........ byebye, the team is all that matters.

Please do this, pretty sure all future draft players would sign to the new NBA rosters. Few years and the NBA would be back to where it is now!

The views expressed in this blog are solely those of the author and do not reflect the views of CBS Sports or