NBA Owners, Players Have Little to Say as Lockout Looms

NBA Owners, Players Have Little to Say as Lockout Looms

Despite the silence, both NBA players and owners seem optimistic a deal a can be reached to avoid a lockout July 1.

Published June 29, 2011

NBA commissioner David Stern believes a deal can possibly be reached before the current collective bargaining agreement ends Thursday night and a likely lockout ensues.

 

The problem is there haven’t been any negotiations between the two sides since last week’s talks broke down, and there were none scheduled Wednesday. The players and owners are scheduled to meet Thursday in hopes of either hammering out a deal or agreeing to extend the current CBA while negotiations continue.

 

But you have to wonder what both sides are thinking, waiting until the final hour. Maybe both the players and owners want a lockout to see which side will blink first.

 

Interestingly, Stern seems to be blaming the players for the lack of communication since he made public the players $500 million concession, which the commish deemed “modest,” according to ESPN.com.

 

"We were prepared to [meet] over the weekend," Stern told reporters Tuesday in Dallas, where the owners were gathered for a meeting. "They said ... can we meet Wednesday or Thursday? We said, 'Fine, we can meet either or both.' And they said Thursday. We said, 'Great.' "

 

We should wonder: Why waste their time? But Sterns insists something could happen prior to the clock striking midnight on Thursday.

 

"There's always time to make a deal," Stern said in the ESPN.com story.

 

But union chief Billy Hunter might have thrown out the best we can hope for when he told the Sports Business Journal there could be an extension of the CBA if both sides are working toward an agreement. But even he seems resigned to what seems like the inevitable.

 

"If no progress is being made by the two sides," Hunter told the Sports Business Journal, "then the NBA will impose a lockout."

 

Contact Terrance Harris at terrancefharris@gmail.com or follow him on Twitter @Terranceharris

 

 

(Photo: Mike Stobe/Getty Images)

Written by Terrance Harris

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