Friday, October 28, 2011

NBA Lockout Winding Down

Yahoo is reporting that the NBA and NBPA have "moved to the cusp of ending the four-month old lockout." Further, there is "strong belief on both sides that a Friday bargaining session could culminate with the framework of an agreement to preserve most, if not all, of a full season."

As a wrote a couple of weeks ago, and as I've been tweeting for a while, areas of compromise emerged, which gave this case a profile for settlement. The two big issues are revenue sharing between the league and players and the salary cap/luxury tax. The issue was finding a balance that worked and by some accounts the they are close to balancing things out. It could take some more time to finalize the deal, but it would be a surprise if the sides didn’t get this settled soon.

At the beginning of all this, the NBA quickly backed off its request for a hard cap. That was the first signal that progress could be made. You may remember the NHL in 2005 never backed off the request for a hard cap, and that fundamental issue, which would redefine the labor side of the sport, led to a missed season. With the NBA yielding early on that issue, it sent a signal that settlement could be achieved. It won't be now but it should be coming so long as the sides continue seeing the forest from the trees.

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