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Players rep Mo Evans: owners’ proposal is the worst in sports history

Jul 10, 2011, 10:07 AM EDT

Maurice Evans

You have to love how both sides are making the lockout into some sort of battle of good and evil. Every time you turn around there’s some sort of hyper-dramatic talk about the other side, like they just started discussing euthanasia for puppies or how to steal from children. And today we’ve got an extra nice one from Mo Evans, a players’ rep for the union. From Hoopsworld.com:

“If we were to agree to their deal, it would be the worst collective bargaining agreement in sports history,” Evans told HOOPSWORLD. “We would be a laughing stock. What they proposed to us says nothing about a partnership. We want nothing more than to grow the game and reward these great fans that have shown support for us and the NBA, but their proposal doesn’t reflect that partnership at all. They proposed rollbacks, salary freezes and things that don’t promote any player growth or security. It was such a terrible system.”

via NBA Saturday: Players Won’t Back Down – Basketball News & NBA Rumors -.

Just so we’re clear on this: players will still be paid millions of dollars to play the game of basketball. I’m not trying to oversimplify this. I understand that this is about market value and their strength as the driving source of the league’s income. I am aware of the years, the literal years they spend devoted to getting themselves in a position to play at this level and to remain there. I’m aware of the pain of recovering from injury, the exhaustion, the intensity, the physical toll. I recognize that they are paid what they are worth in our society, and I don’t dispute the price being fair. But let’s not act like the owners are sending them to a coal mine. In the absolute worst case scenario, the average player only makes a couple million dollars.

Only.

The owners are taking an unnecessarily hard line. The owners are fabricating stories of how player salaries are the driving force behind losses when they’re actually not. The owners are sinking their own ship to justify building a new one. The owners are not “right” in this argument. But it’s just a business agreement between two extremely well-compensated sides. If the owners win, there’s no big change to the world, nor if the players stay strong. But depriving the fans of the game they love? That affects actual people in a meaningful way. But you won’t hear much of that during this process. Both sides are too busy painting the other as a force of darkness.

  1. tudefit - Jul 10, 2011 at 10:24 AM

    They proposed rollbacks, salary freezes and things that don’t promote any player growth or security. It was such a terrible system.

    This statement pisses me off! This is what is happening in the real world today and these athletes have no clue. People are having to take pay cuts or pay freezes, people on social security have had no cost of living adjustment for 2 years now, and that only touches the surface.

    Do these players have any idea how all this ludicrous talk about how they are going to need to “sacrifice” sounds to the intelligent fan who works for a living? I don’t want to hear that short career crap. Most of us have to work for 40 or 50 years and still will never make what these guys get in a year or 2.

    Get real!!!

    • mytthor - Jul 10, 2011 at 1:59 PM

      First, the players are willing to give money back. Every proposal they’ve offered has been for less money than they are getting now.

      The players don’t live in the real world. We just need to accept it as a given and move on. Why should they pay for the owners’ incompetence? Yes people all over the world are having to take pay cuts because companies don’t have the money to pay them. It’s due to the economy being terrible. That is not the problem in the NBA. It’s not like the money’s not there, the owners just can’t stop from spending it stupidly. They want the players to pay for them to have weight loss surgery because they don’t feel they should have to ever try and diet.

      • ch4wordpress - Jul 10, 2011 at 2:56 PM

        @Mytthor, exactly, people who have lost jobs are angry at the athletes who are still working and getting paid well instead of being angry at the ownership class which happens to include the sportsteam owners who have been firing people consistently, since the 1970′s

        I wonder do you think the NBA could do well if it had divisions based on economic strength instead of geography
        http://www.associatedcontent.com/article/8186519/economic_divisions_and_extra.html?cat=3

      • tashkalucy - Jul 10, 2011 at 3:07 PM

        The only thing “inept” about the owners is that they agreed to the last CBA.

      • mytthor - Jul 11, 2011 at 1:12 AM

        If you don’t think allowing Jose Calderon to be signed to a 9.7 million dollar contract doesn’t qualifies as ineptitude, I won’t be able to have a conversation with you.

    • ch4wordpress - Jul 10, 2011 at 2:55 PM

      @Tudefit,
      the difference between the athletes, the many workers in europe and most workers in states is that they are part of unions which are demanding workers rights, while most people are not part of a union and have no union to join to demand the cost of labor be satisfactory towards a happy and content life.
      In germany, they havent had the huge firings, but do you know why? the unions there are very strong and the government stands with them. The corporations answered with a plan to work for less time with the same pay scale. Not FIRE!!! like in this country , but lower the hours worked.

      I think the players UNION!!! is doing the right thing, many people are angry with players for being unionized. If they didnt have a union owners could do what they wanted, like the owners of the car, steel, manufacturing industries, oil , have done already in this country, firing people for their needs.
      Dont be angry that the athletes unions are alive and strong enough to do what the common workers unions should have been able to do if we would have stood behind them

      With that being said, here is an idea for a path to true change in the NBA? do you agree?
      http://www.associatedcontent.com/article/8186519/economic_divisions_and_extra.html?cat=3

    • tashkalucy - Jul 10, 2011 at 3:06 PM

      Social Security is being frozen for the 3rd year starting in January.

      • ch4wordpress - Jul 11, 2011 at 5:46 PM

        In europe they have all their social nets but they also have unions defended and beloved by the people, the States dont, too many people love placing blame on everybody but owners

  2. trbowman - Jul 10, 2011 at 11:35 AM

    NFLPA head called the owners proposal the worst in sports history.

    lol

  3. greatminnesotasportsmind - Jul 10, 2011 at 6:45 PM

    Must be tough to only make a couple of million dollars a year for being average at your job. They definitely get hosed for having only 3 months if your on a good team and 5 months if your on a lousy team of vacation every year. The working middle class who gets 3-4 weeks a year can feel your pain. I know that travel schedule is brutal flying 1st class every where you go. The ushers at hotel bring your bags into your lousy 5 star hotel. God forbid you can’t purchase your 8th corvette and 3rd vacation home that is in excess of 750,000 square feet.

    Maybe these players need to sit in on an average man/woman’s bargaining. Like the postal service where they want to take an extra day off your work schedule and pay you 10% less than they do now. Not to mention take vacation time away and pay more in health care. The average American family struggles to make ends meet.Not that I would expect any of them to understand that.

    • almzor - Jul 13, 2011 at 11:27 AM

      Union jobs didn’t get screwed over the way non-union jobs did. Unions exist to shield the work forces they represent from bearing the brunt of every ownership miscalculation. That’s the nature of the beast, and why Wisconsin tried to break their unions. The easiest way for the ownership class to increase profits by devaluing their labor. Since we have the highest priced labor in the world in this country it makes sense from a global ownership standpoint. One could even argue that there is a labor bubble in the US since you can pay someone else less to do almost anything a US worker can do. But the owners (not NBA owners, just US business owners in general) recognize they can’t publicly make those kinds of statements without ruining their respective brands.

      If you want a better job than you can get at the postal service, try acquiring some marketable skills. It’s not the players’ fault they’re actually good enough at something to exert negotiating leverage about it.

      As an aside:
      Guess that tool comment last week really stung man. Pro tip: if you’re going to change your name, don’t make the new one look exactly like the old one with a state in place of a sport. We can make @$$ anagrams out of this one instead of tool ones if things get out of hand again.

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