Commissioner David Stern gave NBA players an offer and a deadline: Accept a chance to earn up to 51 percent of basketball-related income by Wednesday or get ready for a deal that’s a whole lot worse.
He wouldn’t call it an ultimatum, but it didn’t sure sit well with the union.
“The players will not be intimidated,” attorney Jeffrey Kessler said early Sunday after eight hours of negotiations stretched late into the night. “They want to play, they want a season, but they are not going to sacrifice the future of all NBA players under these types of threats of intimidation. It’s not happening on Derek Fisher’s watch; it’s not happening on Billy Hunter’s watch; it’s not happening on the watch of this executive committee.”
Kessler said the proposal was really 50.2 percent for the players and called the chance of them ever reaching 51 percent a “fraud” and an “illusion.”
Whatever. If players don’t agree to it by Wednesday, Stern said they would get a deal that would guarantee them just 47 percent of BRI and call for a flex salary cap.
— Reported by Brian Mahoney of the Associated Press