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Great, we have a handshake deal. So now what happens?

Nov 26, 2011, 7:27 PM EDT

NBA Labor Basketball AP

David Stern and Billy Hunter shook hands. Figuratively, but there is a handshake deal in place for an NBA labor settlement. The framework for a full blown new NBA collective bargaining agreement is in place.

But that is a long way from an actual signed deal and NBA games starting on Christmas Day.

So, what happens next?

First, the negotiations never stop. Stern and Hunter may get to sleep in for a day but the attorneys for the two sides will be meeting long hours over the next week to 10 days to hammer out the “B-List” issues. Those are things like the draft age, the drug testing program, who can be assigned to the D-League and a host of other issues that need to be resolved. The two sides don’t always agree on those things, but none are deal breakers. They horse-trade these items for a while.

Meanwhile, the players will ask to have their anti-trust lawsuit in Minnesota dismissed and the owners will ask to have their preemptive lawsuit in New York on decertification issues dismissed as well.

Not long after, the NBA players union will be reformed. Just as it was before. As if nothing had happened.

Eventually the deal will be finalized and put to separate votes of the players and the owners. In both cases the vote will not be unanimous, there are hardliners on both sides that think their side gave up too much. But in both cases a majority want games and can live with this deal, and barring some dramatic turn it will pass.

Right after that, team facilities will re-open to players and coaches can contact their charges and start talking about the season.

Then training camps will open on Dec. 9, the same day that maybe the most wild and frenzied free agency period in NBA history will open. The talent on the market this year is not what it was in years past, but teams will move fast to get their free agents in place and into camp working with their new teammates.

Then on Christmas Day — tip off.

And while this season promises to be a roller coaster, it will be much more fun than the ups and downs of the lockout.

  1. philtration - Nov 26, 2011 at 9:37 PM

    Now you turn your back on the NBA for a year to teach them a lesson.
    Don’t go to the games, don’t watch them on T.V. and don’t buy any NBA crap.

    Let them take a bath for a year.
    They were more than willing to turn their backs on the fans. Hell… they already have for the last month.
    Keep your generic season.

    • trbowman - Nov 27, 2011 at 1:07 AM

      I still plan on watching the Wizards on TV but, I don’t plan on attending any games. I support the team but the on-court product isn’t worth my money right now.

      As for the rest of the NBA, I don’t even care. I never watch the Christmas day games, nor do I typically watch nationally televised games on TNT/ESPN – and this year will be no different.

      Wizards baby!

    • deadeyedesign23 - Nov 27, 2011 at 4:05 AM

      How much do you want to bet that the ratings on Dec. 25h are through the roof.

  2. ajbrand33 - Nov 26, 2011 at 9:58 PM

    What are they going to do about the all star weekend?

    • Kurt Helin - Nov 27, 2011 at 11:08 AM

      All Star weekend is a go.

  3. charger383 - Nov 26, 2011 at 10:21 PM

    Fans come back, you are forgiven. We will play our big fat rich butts off for you. The players and owners need and love you. Please bring your money. We will even show you our tattoos and jewelry.

    • skids003 - Nov 28, 2011 at 1:45 PM

      We might even talk to you during the game, and not spit at you or cuss you. Just be sure to bring your money and we will allow you to worship us.

  4. denverdude7 - Nov 27, 2011 at 7:33 AM

    Maybe there is still some hope the NBA season will be cancelled.

    Put Bron-Bron back at the negotiating table. It is the fourth quarter for negotiations isn’t it? Maybe he’s got one more choke left in him and can kill the deal for us.

  5. indianaviking - Nov 27, 2011 at 8:24 AM

    What will get higher ratings on Christmas? NBA or the 24 hour “A Christmas Story” marathon? I know which one will be on in my home…

    • phillyphever - Nov 27, 2011 at 11:31 AM


  6. rjccooper - Nov 27, 2011 at 11:44 AM

    -Negotiations between this fan and NBA are still ongoing.Sorry Direct T V ( NBA Package ) maybe next season.

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