Blog Entry

Mayors write letter urging NBA labor compromise

Posted on: October 15, 2011 2:48 am
Edited on: October 15, 2011 3:00 am
Posted by Ben Gollivernba-lockout

Mayors are usually only good for riding in the back of convertibles during parades, promising to lower taxes and lock up sex offenders, and dramatically cutting ribbon with oversized scissors, so it came as a pleasant surprise this week when a group of them decided to nudge their way into the ongoing NBA lockout. reports that 14 mayors from NBA cities addressed a joint letter to commissioner David Stern and National Basketball Players Association executive director Billy Hunter requesting that the two sides work to salvage a season and to end the lockout as quickly as possible.

The letter can be read here. The following is an excerpt.
Unfortunately, lost in the debate over a new NBA collective bargaining agreement, has been the perspective of those very residents and the negative impact a cancelled season might have on them, our cities and our local economies.

We know the issues being discussed between NBA owners and players are complex and need to be addressed to ensure the long-term wellbeing of the league. We are not interested in taking a side. The United States Conference of Mayors has always maintained impartiality in major leagues sports negotiations.

Rather, we respectfully ask that you consider the consequences to our cities should the lockout continue. We ask that you work quickly to find a way to compromise so that we might salvage the upcoming NBA season. 
As notes, the letter is written without taking a side in the dispute. The goal is compromise for both sides, not victory for one or the other. Among the undersigned include Sacramento Mayor Kevin Johnson, an All-Star guard for the Phoenix Suns in the 1990s, and Detroit Mayor Dave Bing, an All-Star guard for the Pistons in the 1960s and 1970s.

The big question here is whether this letter will influence the negotiations. The answer is no, not at all, but at least they tried.

On Monday, Stern announced the cancellation of the first two weeks of the league's regular season. Previously, he cancelled the entire preseason schedule and postponed the start of training camp. Stern said Thursday that if a deal cannot be reached by Tuesday, Oct. 10, that the league's annual Christmas Day games could be in jeopardy.

Since: Mar 31, 2010
Posted on: October 16, 2011 12:18 am

Mayors write letter urging NBA labor compromise


Since: Sep 20, 2006
Posted on: October 15, 2011 11:03 am

Mayors write letter urging NBA labor compromise

No wonder Mayors want action.

In the immortal words of Charles Barkley, at his retirement press conference in Phoenix, looking at the Mayor of Phoenix- "I'm your worst nightmare, another unemployed black man in your city".  

Players make an avaregh of $5 million a year, and slaries for less than 500 players exceeded $2 BILLION. The NBA lost $300 million last year. YOU TELL ME WHICH SIDE NEEDS TO COMPROMISE.

Players need to shut up and go back to work... at a rate the owners can make a PROFIT, so us taxpayers that paid for NBA arenas can get some tax help to feed the people that would rather sit home and watch NBA, than work to help pay for it.   

Since: Dec 5, 2006
Posted on: October 15, 2011 3:43 am

Mayors write letter urging NBA labor compromise

Even though numerous players and NBA officials have noted the impact of missed games on those who work in NBA arenas, very little has been said by either side for the multitude of small business employees from restaurants, bars, hotels and bowling alleys who cater to the NBA fans and players during the season. A great many will lose their jobs. Too many will lose their businesses. In this economy these small businesses are clinging to the edge after the summer waiting until the season can  return their revenue stream.

So kudos to the Mayors who have spoken up. With fourteen agreeing to co-sign the letter you have to wonder about the other sixteen fifteen cities and their lack of being included. One would think each were given an opportunity to be included and if I am in one of those cities whose mayor is too important to concur on this plea I am thinking perhaps of who might run against the incumbent in the next election. Like shaking hands and kissing babies politicians (even those who detest sports) have to say the right words in support of the local teams. in the next election. Like shaking hands and kissing babies politicians (even those who detest sports) have to say the right words in support of the local teams.

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