Jun 24, 2011, 1:25 PM EDT
The NBA owners want to radically shift the league’s financial system, and that’s going to mean serious give-backs by the players. Privately, some tied to ownership will tell you they aren’t sure they can get serious concessions until the players miss a paycheck or two (and the players don’t get their first check until Nov. 15).
The players are not so down with massive salary rollbacks. As you might expect. And they showed up to Friday’s Collective Bargaining Agreement negotiations trying to send ownership a message, according to NBA.com.
Wearing gray T-shirts over their street clothes that said, “STAND / 2011 NBPA Summer Meeting,” about 50 NBA players arrived in a group, exiting a limousine bus to attend Friday’s negotiating session for a new collective bargaining agreement….
“The message is just solidarity, that we have to stand together, we have to be unified and be prepared to address whatever the circumstance is, but address it together,” said Billy Hunter, executive director of the National Basketball Players Association.
What does this mean? (Other than somebody made a run on XXL T-shirts, because not a lot of NBA players wear a medium.) It means you better be ready for a summer of labor stories filled with tedious details of a new CBA, owners finances and the like. Because the players are not backing down and we are headed for a lockout. The official vote for that is next Tuesday.
Let’s just hope it doesn’t come to lost paychecks and games.
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