Representatives of NBA owners and the players union met again Thursday with the mediator, but apparently no real progress was made, and negotiations have broken off for now.With David Stern sick with the flu, Adam Silver led things for the owners side today.
Adam Silver and Spurs owner Peter Holt after the meeting said:
1) Players are now willing to drop their BRI (basketball-related income) demands from 53% to 52.5%. But owners are still offering players 50% and are not willing to go higher. So there’s just a 2.5% difference.
2) There continue to be system issues, meaning the way free agency works, mid-level exceptions or other exceptions, salary cap and other items that need to be worked out. The two sides still have a lot to work on in this regard aside from the big BRI issue.
3) Silver said that as of tonight (Thursday), the league is not ready to announce that additional regular season games have been canceled yet. They aren’t saying when the next set of two regular season weeks may be canceled, but it won’t be tonight.
4) San Antonio Spurs owner Peter Holt says his team has lost money two straight seasons.
The owners side, as it has done before, suggested that the players union isn’t really open to negotiation.
Players Union president Derek Fisher after the meeting said:
1) “You guy were lied to earlier,” said Fisher to reporters. It appears what he means is that the owners reps were implying that the players union is unwilling to negotiate and be flexible, but Fisher says they are. That’s a general paraphrase.
2) Fisher says that the above is extremely frustrating.
3) Billy Hunter said what he’s said before, that he feels this has been the NBA’s plan for two or three years now, to totally break the union, and that owners really want the NHL system applied to the NBA.
4) Hunter confirmed what is pretty well-known, that the big-market owners are looking to get a deal done, but he feels the small-market owners are the ones who are playing harder than the rest and really going for a homerun deal. He thinks there’s a sizable gap between the big vs small-market owners.
5) Hunter says owners are still saying that the deal needs to be a 50/50 BRI (basketball-related income) split, or else a deal is simply not going to work, regardless of the other issues that still need to be resolved.
Billy Hunter ended with: “We’re open to negotiate. We’re ready to go back to the table anytime — without any preconditions, though.”
It turns out that the players union says that owners have again made it clear that players have to agree to a 50-50 BRI split or else there’s simply nothing else to talk about at this time.
And that, the NBA lockout continues.
Read NBA fan opinion or share your views in this basketball forum topic.