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Michael Jordan leads NBA owners: 50/50 too much

Posted on: November 4, 2011 2:23 pm
Edited on: November 4, 2011 2:44 pm
Posted by Ben Golliver


Just when you thought that the possible decertificiation of the National Basketball Players Association was the biggest threat to the 2011-2012 NBA season, the Greatest Basketball Player Of All Time is reportedly stepping into the forefront, reminding everyone that the world of hoops still revolves around him.

NBA legend Michael Jordan, the majority owner of the Charlotte Bobcats, is reportedly leading a band of owners who believe that a 50/50 split of Basketball-Related Income is too much for the owners to give up.

The New York Times has the details.
The owners’ faction includes between 10 and 14 owners and is being led by Charlotte’s Michael Jordan, according to a person who has spoken with the owners. That group wanted the players’ share set no higher than 47 percent, and it was upset when league negotiators proposed a 50-50 split last month.

According to the person who spoke with the owners, Jordan’s faction intends to vote against the 50-50 deal, if negotiations get that far. Saturday’s owners meeting was arranged in part to address that concern.

A majority of the 29 owners are believed to support a 50-50 deal, but they are reluctant to move further. “There’s no one who’s interested in going above 50 percent,” said the person who has spoken with the owners.

Assuming the report's accurary, it's a fairly stunning about-face for Jordan. In 1998, just 13 years ago, Jordan famously told Abe Pollin, then owner of the Washington Wizards, that he should sell his team if he can't make a profit, rather than take a "hard stand" against the players. Fourteen years later, with the situation reversed, Jordan now so embodies hard-line ownership that he has become the group's public face. 

Removing Jordan from this equation, you don't have to read too far between the lines to see what's happening.

This is the ownership's response to the idea that the threat of decertification might serve as leverage to improve the owners' offer to players during Saturday's negotiating session. It produces a clear choice for the players: Take a 50/50 split, which you say that you don't want, because it will be the best offer made, period. And, please, consider the fact that there is a large, vocal minority pushing the offer back the other direction if you decide not to accept it. In other words, this information attempts to incentivize the players to cave now rather than to cave later. It appeals to any insecurity they might have about the direction of the negotiations, presents 50/50 as a reasonable alternative to the season-spiking chaos that goes along with decertification, and attempts to extinguish any hope that 52.5 percent, or even 51 percent, is a future possibility.

That Jordan has become the front man for all of this could very well end up taking some of the luster off his pristine reputation as the years pass. Or, it could get swept under the rug like many of his other transgressions. His motiviations are clear enough. the Bobcats struggle to win games, struggle to sell tickets and struggle to generate revenue. They can make a better case than most teams that the NBA's current model is broken. 

But the Bobcats' struggles will be lost in the shadow that Jordan's legend inevitably casts over everything in his vicinity. Each individual NBA player -- whether he's attended regional meetings, negotiating sessions, or not -- must now process the fact that the man many of them hold up as an idol on the court now clearly sits on the other side of the room in the current labor battle.

It's one thing to negotiate against NBA commissioner David Stern. It's quite another to know that Stern is the good guy trying to hold the greatest to ever lace them up in check. You couldn't blame NBA players if they felt deflated after reading this. Negotiating against lawyers is bad enough. Negotiating against your hero is damn near impossible. 

Hat tip: Kelly Dwyer, Ball Don't Lie
Since: Dec 24, 2006
Posted on: November 7, 2011 9:34 pm
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Since: May 2, 2010
Posted on: November 6, 2011 1:26 am

Michael Jordan leads NBA owners: 50/50 too much

it's a fairly stunning about-face for Jordan
This is actually not that stunning for 2 reasons.

#1, in 1998, he didn't know what being an owner of an NBA team was like. Now he does.
#2, the economy of the entire globe is teetering on the brink of collapse and the players are whining about making more millions while the owners struggle to make ends meet.

Since: Aug 12, 2007
Posted on: November 5, 2011 9:34 pm

Michael Jordan leads NBA owners: 50/50 too much

You've got to love MJ completely opposing his stance from the previous lockout 13 years ago.  Could you blame him?  Circumstances have changed over time in the NBA.  Players today are simply immature.

Since: Dec 7, 2006
Posted on: November 5, 2011 7:34 pm

Michael Jordan leads NBA owners: 50/50 too much

While I may think MJ is a horrible owner and he was part of the problem in 1998 when he was getting paid so much higher than everyone else, he happens to be right here.  50/50 is too much for the players.  While it is down the middle and a fair split mathematically, even this favors the players.  The players as a whole should not be getting paid the same as the owners.  The players are the employees and the owners are the employer.  They have NO RIGHTS and should not be demanding anything.  In a real job, they would have been fired for demanding more revenue coming to them and asking the boss to take a paycut.  The 57-43 revenue in favor of the players was an awful deal in the first place because that is the reason why 22 teams have LOST money!  The primadonnas are demanding so much that the owners are paying them and have are not taking in the money to pay them.  The reason is because no one is going to the games to watch them due to very high ticket prices.  And the reason the owners are charging so much to see a game is because of these players like DWade (Mr. I Deserve More than $14 Million a Season) and Prince James.  Why pay players so much if you cannot even fill up your own arenas and are losing money?  The owners need to show the players who the boss really is (literally because that is what they technically are).  These superstar players and the NBPA Union Leader Billy Hunter are like big bullies who the boss is terrified of so they give in to their demands.  If they play a season this year, these punks will be the winners and we will go down this same road 5-7 years from now.  The owners need to be firm and refuse any deal.  Force these guys to not receive a paycheck.  Even with no money coming in, they still earned more last year than 99% of people would have earned in a lifetime!  These players do not know how lucky they are to get the salaries they get by playing a game and will be able to retire by the age of 40 set for the rest of their lives.  I wish I had that much money to be complaining b/c I never would if I did.  They just use the excuse of needing to feed their families as the cry that they are throwing it out on their outrageous lifestyle.  Lebron and Wade say they need more for their kids, but in reality, they need more because they spent too much of it partying in South Beach.  In all truth, it should be at least 57-43 owners.

Do what the NHL and NFL did.  Lock them out until the players and that jerk Billy Hunter get so desperate, they will take any fair deal that is offered.  If they miss the season like the NHL did, they will be desperate enough after losing millions, to take any deal the owners offered.  Then, they will get a fair deal and what was deserved.

Since: Jul 1, 2010
Posted on: November 5, 2011 6:52 pm

Michael Jordan leads NBA owners: 50/50 too much

It has more to do with winning than money with MJ.   He has to win, otherwise he'll be more intolerable than he already is.   Too bad he can't let somebody else take the lead.   Great opportunity to remind everybody what a d-bag he is.

He's probably got a wager on the negotiations worth more than whatever percentage he's bickering over.

Since: Jul 21, 2007
Posted on: November 5, 2011 5:14 pm

Michael Jordan leads NBA owners: 50/50 too much

This gu yhas always been a low life in my eyes, Hypocrisy at its best

Since: Sep 5, 2010
Posted on: November 5, 2011 4:42 pm

Michael Jordan leads NBA owners: 50/50 too much

Words that describe Michael Jordan:


If you were smart and a betting man, anything that came out of the man's mouth... take the opposite and take the odds!  

Since: Sep 5, 2008
Posted on: November 5, 2011 4:31 pm

Michael Jordan leads NBA owners: 50/50 too much

With the guaranteed contracts still part of the sport. I am done with it just as i have given up the sport of baseball. theycan have themselves and the wrecked sport of basketball. Good Bye Basketball. You just lost a Fan

Since: Nov 2, 2011
Posted on: November 5, 2011 4:12 pm

Michael Jordan leads NBA owners: 50/50 too much

Well if there are teams unable to make money at the old percent how are they going to make it at 50-50? So if the players do the math, its like any business the doors will shut and they will be out a job anyways lol! They are way over paid for the revenue they pull in it is not like baseball or no where near football for how many tickets they can sell for fans to actually come and watch! Some people really need to wake up!

Since: Mar 6, 2009
Posted on: November 5, 2011 3:16 pm

Michael Jordan leads NBA owners: 50/50 too much

This is coming from a man that negotiated the 47% when it was good for him now he want 47% the other way cause it will be good for him. MJ is the greatest but i give this no merit. This really shows how greedy he is. This also a man that made 25 million a year in a time everyone else was making 5 mill a year.

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