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Union VP Evans doesn’t think entire season will be lost

Sep 26, 2011, 12:50 PM EST

NBA Labor Negotiations Continue As Deadline Looms Getty Images

Unless there is a handshake deal in place between the NBA and its players union by the first couple days of next week, there is no chance the NBA season starts on time. There’s not enough time to pull it off. Nobody really expects a deal in place by then (it’s not even known if the two sides will meet this week).

Regular season games will be postponed and lost. It’s going to happen. The real question now is how many games will be lost?

Maurice Evans, the veteran journeyman and union vice president, said this in an ESPN chat on Friday (via the twitter of Tom Haberstroh).

I don’t think the entire season will get cancelled. I think sometime between November and January we’ll see basketball.

A source recently told me something similar, expect games to start somewhere between Thanksgiving and Christmas. There are other rumblings along these lines. Nobody really knows for sure, but this seems to be becoming the new conventional wisdom. Nobody really expects a full season to be lost, but nobody really thinks the season will start on time, either.

Aside that, Evans spouted the union line throughout the chat, as he has done throughout the process. He’s been a good soldier.

The biggest thing are the things that have been reported in the media, that the players are greedy that the owners are losing money, that the system is broken. The system isn’t broken. The owners aren’t losing money. The players will concede a certain amount, but the system isn’t broken and the owners aren’t losing money….

It’s been very frustrating at the pace at which the negotiations have moved. But it’s all a part of negotiations. But it’s a tactic to use time to persuade us. The players are more than willing to engage the owners whenever they’re willing to meet. We’ve made proposals that have shifted real dollars from our side to theirs. We’ll be ready whenever they want to meet in real negotiations.

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