Blog Entry

Lockout hope? Pump those brakes

Posted on: September 13, 2011 3:50 pm
Edited on: September 13, 2011 4:29 pm
Posted by Royce Young

Those past six days were fun. After months of darkness and doom and gloom rhetoric from both players and owners, there was finally a little reason for optimism. And it wasn't just in the form of Roger Mason's non-tweet. Pretty much everywhere you looked, there was reason to believe an NBA season could be starting on time.

The turn of the calendar to September ramped up the pressure to get a deal done. Backs are to the wall in terms of getting training camps and preseason in. Whether it was just unbridled optimism from the media or there was good reason for it, the buildup to Tuesday's labor meeting in New York had people believing in something good. We all waited for reps to emerge and proudly proclaim, "Looking like a season! HOW U!!!"

Alas, that didn't happen. In fact, quite the opposite. David Stern put it bluntly: "We did not have a great day." Our Ken Berger of has been all over the labor negotiations and he passed along some pretty unsettling news. A sampling:

A bombshell indeed. One that just obliterated my upbeat outlook of the 2011-12 season. So much for hacked tweets and Derek Fisher texting players to get ready for a season. So much for no more doom and gloom or pessimistic rhetoric. So much for November and December basketball, potentially.

Now of course, this is one side of the story. The owners may have a different view of it all, but the players aren't shy about being downtrodden about the chances of a deal. But I wouldn't expect a different story from the league, except they're just going to flip the script and put it on the players. They may have bigger problems though. Consider this:

Division of interest, eh? Stern acknowledged it to a lesser degree, saying the owners were not unanimous on concepts. But the story from the league has always been that the owners are more unified than ever and while you have to consider the source -- Billy Hunter isn't exactly on the owners side here -- it makes sense for some of the owners to dislike this incredibly stubborn, hardline stance. For example, an owner like Clay Bennett is captaining a successful small market team that has a fanbase absolutely nuts for its team.

And if you start punching those fans in the face, you don't know what the consequences could be. I'm speculating, but I would assume someone like Bennett is saying, "OK guys, I rode with you to here, but we need to get something done." Then the big hitters like James Dolan and Mark Cuban come in and shoot it all down. At least that's how I'm picturing it.

Don't give up completely. Like I said, the league has a different view. And there's naturally going to be some tough negotiating to be done. The two sides were miles apart when they started and the calendar saying September isn't going to just automatically close that gap. It's called bargaining. Negotiating. It's all part of it. Here I go trying to talk myself into it again, but there's still time to get something done. But future sessions will have to be much more productive than this. Otherwise, this sums it up all too well:

I remember a wise (fictional) person say one time, "The night is darkest just before the dawn." Boy I hope so. Because it's pretty dark out right now.
Category: NBA

Since: Mar 22, 2007
Posted on: September 13, 2011 5:54 pm

Lockout hope? Pump those brakes

Who cares?  The NBA is boring.  Everytime I watch the NBA, I see half the players standing around watching 4-6 others actually playing ball.  In addition, the season is too long.  82 games?  Let's reduce that to about 66 games.  Half the teams make the playoffs.  How about reducing that to 12 again?  Finally, why are the Finals in June?  Good grief!  I remember when the Knicks beat the Lakers in 1970 and the season was over by May 10th.  No, I'll be watching college basketball and not missing the NBA at all.  I'm not sure I'll notice when THIS lockout is over.

Since: Oct 8, 2006
Posted on: September 13, 2011 4:58 pm

Lockout hope? Pump those brakes

The difference between the NBA and the NFL lockouts were simple, people actually gave a crap about the NFL lockout. NBA has been horrible for years!

Since: Apr 22, 2009
Posted on: September 13, 2011 4:45 pm

Lockout hope? Pump those brakes

WE can only hope the season is gone. 

Since: Jun 21, 2011
Posted on: September 13, 2011 4:35 pm

Lockout hope? Pump those brakes

"face sitting" lol

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