The NBA Lockout: Power vs Money

November 2, 2011

Uncategorized


We have hit day 125. As most are aware, the saga of the NBA lockout has been ongoing for the last several months. The owners, the players and certainly the fans are all right in the middle of a messy situation. The fans want to just see their favorite players and hometown teams play basketball, the players want their high-paying jobs back and the owners want to regain their sense of power and control. As a hometown New York Knicks fan, all I can hope for is the NBA to be back sometime this year. My hopes aren’t too high though; games have already been canceled and reports state that both sides aren’t budging on making a deal just yet. It’s hard to see an end to this endless slaughter of an NBA season, especially when one side wants money and the other wants power.

Both the owners and the players deserve to be called “greedy” for their actions and demands in these intense lockout negotiations. The players want more money and the owners want more power, who’s right in this situation? The owners are the ones who supply the money for the teams, stadiums and players. At the same time, the players are the ones who make the game, the plays and bring in the fans who wear their jerseys. You don’t see Mark Cuban jerseys; you see ones with the names Bryant and Anthony on the back.

Its been said that the owners are in favor and have agreed to a 50/50 split, yet specifics on certain details are still being argued over. The owners want to regain their power, they feel like they lost it to the superstars of the league, players like Lebron James, Carmelo Anthony and Dwight Howard.  The owners feel like they need to control what happens in the league, not the superstars. Do the owners need to do whatever they can to keep their power?

Personally, I take the side of the players in this dispute. The players are the ones who make the game, not the owners.  The owners don’t need to extend their power, the system we have in place has made the NBA flourish. The NBA has been extending its popularity in the last few years and more and more people are taking an interest into the game; domestically and internationally. A lockout is going to hurt the success and the strides taken by the NBA in the last few years. A 50/50 split is fair, and the owners should have some of the stipulations they desire put into place. The players know they make enough money, but shortening contracts and ending sign-and-trade deals can hurt player’s future and playing career in general.

What do you guys think? Are the players or the owners right within their demands? Is the deal that both sides proposing fair? Do the owners need to do whatever they can to have their power?

Advertisements

Subscribe

Subscribe to our RSS feed and social profiles to receive updates.

22 Comments on “The NBA Lockout: Power vs Money”

  1. springsteen1 Says:

    Another great conceptual idea, but one which I take the side of the middle man, in a rare occurrence.

    The problem with this, as in all major sports, is that players ARE paid too much. They are paid too much, they are selfish, and they are greedy. Hence, it cannot be argued that they are also the commodity, the skill here. They have a value proposition – they are the value proposition – and the owners don’t. Settle on a middle ground and move on.

    Here, Hobbes would love the concept. He would say that in the state of nature, the players should get everything. He could, however, argue that the owners should get everything, including both their money, part of the players salaries, and the value proposition of skill / talent from the players. However, it is far more likely that he would choose the players, given his full conceptual / philosophical background and proceed to allot them as much as they please.

    • maxmoray Says:

      I agree with the notion mentioned by springsteen1, that the players are getting paid too much. However, is it really their fault? Yes NBA athletes are most likely selfish and greedy, but what separates them from athletes in other sports? The fact of the matter is NBA owners have given large contracts to NBA players who are undeserving of the money they are getting paid. Take for example former elite players Rashard Lewis, Baron Davis and Gilbert Arenas. Combined the three are supposed to make 130 million over the next three years, an unlawful amount of money, as all three of these guys are simply only corpses of their younger selfs. Guys like this, along with other names including Josh Childress, Mehmet Okur, and Richard Jefferson, have their owner and fans caught in a strangle hold financially.

      To combat the problem of all these ridiculously large contracts for washed up players, the owners and players have reached tentative agreement on an amnesty provision that will allow teams to release one player — with pay — at any point during the life of the next collective bargaining agreement. Likewise, 75 percent of a player’s contract value will not count against the salary cap when shed via amnesty. New rules like this in conjunction with a harder salary cap will hopefully keep the owners from spending too much.

      Regardless, with this much money available, and with the NBA entering one of it’s most compelling seasons, it is a shame no final agreements have been made between the owners and the players. I agree with springsteen1 that Hobbes would be mystified. He, like many others, would be caught in this horrible mess and would battle for whatever side he was apart of.

  2. chkeeler Says:

    I like the sports-related example. I am a long-time Detroit Pistons fan, but have recently stopped watching them after their dominance in the mid 2000’s. They were the last team that truly emphasized the importance of the team over individual talent. Since the Pistons collapse from power, I have become quite annoyed with the NBA. The players are often more worried about individual stardom and “stacking” teams, and have lost touch with the real goal.

    The owners need to regain some of the power lost in recent years. The owners go through a great deal to hire the right front office staff, head coach, and select the right players in the draft. The players need to be more grateful for the opportunities they have been given, and start focusing more on the ultimate goal of winning a Championship for the organization. Owners want their teams to do well: they want the community to support them, and thus should at least share revenue with the players.

    You could say that the players, in this case, are breaching the social contract. When they agreed to play in the NBA, they agreed that they will in turn lose some of their rights to the owners who make an investment in their players. The owners make decisions regarding their players, and go to great lengths to make sure their players are happy and “protected” financially. The NBA has struggled financially in the last few years, and the owners are simply trying to make changes that will benefit the league in the long-run.

    Pistons NBA Champs in 2014 (if there is a league)

  3. ianbaker2041 Says:

    I was actually just talking about this with a friend last night. She’s a New York Yankees fan, and I was born and raised a Red Sox fan. As you can imagine, we’ve had some heated discussions about it during our friendship.

    She bugged me about the Red Sox again. “Come on, with that payroll, you should never blow a 9 game lead to the Rays.” Normally I’d counter, but last night, I just couldn’t. In light of Francona’s departure and Ortiz’s announcement that he would consider becoming a free agent and going over to New York, I realized just how much about money it had all become. In 2011, the Red Sox paid Ortiz $12,500,000, and he still wants more. You’ve got to be kidding me. Is your mansion not good enough? For years, Boston saw David Ortiz as the epitome of all that was great about the Red Sox, and now he wants to go run off to New York like Damon did? You’ve got to be kidding me. The same thing happened in reverse when ARod nearly went over to the Red Sox from New York. At some point, you would hope that at least SOME commitment to the team would shine through, but that sadly doesn’t seem to be the reality.

    Your point about basketball highlights just that. The players are making a ridiculous amount of money. I could never dream of making even a fraction of that (that’s the life of a political science major for you), and they want more. The owners have a pretty significant amount of cash flowing in, too, especially if they’re aligned with some of the better teams. For either party to demand any more seems a little bit crazed to me, so I’m not even going to begin to say that one side is more “right” than the other. Both sides look pretty bad right about now.

    I said this to my friend, and I’ll say it again here: I’m all for caps on salaries for all professional sports. I would love to see the same kind of passion that the Michigan football team takes the field with transfer over to professional sports. I’ve found that as I’ve gotten older and understood the system more and more, pro games in uncapped sports are just less fun to watch because the players are simply on that field (or court) because the team is paying them the most to be there, not because they feel a real bond to the team. The moment another clubhouse offers more, they’re not going to be there anymore. If sports are supposed to be about devotion and competition, it seems that the players and owners are devoted to completely the wrong things, and if something doesn’t change, I think that more and more people will become so disheartened with professional sports that they’ll just say “forget it” like I have. I’ll stay here in Ann Arbor and watch Michigan football, basketball, volleyball, and hockey. I don’t need to leave town to watch a bunch of money hungry players at any sport run up and down the court just to make more money. That’s not what sports are about.

  4. weinben Says:

    You state rather emphatically that the players are what make the league and that the players should benefit the most from their skills, rather than the owners. I disagree. The NBA is, now, a multinational organization which is essentially a band between the owners who organize and finance the competition between players who are the very best at their trade. While the players are certainly the ones on the court, that is but the most superficial level of the NBA. As it is a business, there is much more to it than simply putting players on a court (which the owners pay for) and watching them play. All the advertisements, merchandizing, brand marketing, facility upkeep, and so on, all attribute to the success of the NBA. Players are investments in the eyes of the owners and just a single part of the puzzle which makes the NBA work. While, no doubt, certain players have enormous cross over ability to influence and appeal to people outside the sport, what allows them to showcase their skills is all the tedious and exhausting work the owners and backroom management does which enables superstars like Kobe, D-Rose and Kevin Durant to showcase their amazing talents.
    Also, the symbolism of giving players a larger chunk of the pie is not appropriate for long term success. As we have seen in other sports, when players are given too much power then are only concerned with their own short term benefit. Owners are trying to build long term franchises which will be around for decades if not over a century. Having a successful franchise can change and benefit a city and millions of people who watch the game and invest their time, emotion and pride into their team. Often, a team embodies the characteristics of a city. But in order to have this, the owners must have enough power, and more than the players, to plan for long term success.
    In more philosophical terms, we can say that the NBA is in need of a Leviathan of sorts. Hobbes makes the case for not only a social contract but an absolute ruler, one who makes the choices for his people for long term success as they relinquish certain powers to him which promote long term and widespread hospitality and happiness. The players, in this case, need a revised contract with the owners, who would be the Leviathan, or sovereign leader. The owners need more power because they are the ones who are simply more invested in the larger scale viability of the organization.

  5. Greg Kraus Says:

    In my opinion, what makes the NBA lockout such a difficult issue to resolve is the differing perspectives of the players and owners. The owners of teams in the NBA see the league and everything that comes with it as an opportunity to make a profit for themselves. They treat their teams as small businesses or a way to make millions. To the owners, money is really all that matters. For the players on the other hand, it is primarily about the game that they love, and have dedicated their entire lives to. However, the problem for the players arrises when they see owner’s reaping incredible profits for themselves. If I was a star athlete and the owner of my team was making more money than I was, I would be furious. The owners in the NBA know that the players need them in order for the league to survive. On the other hand, the owners need the players to be happy and perform in order for the league to survive. This back and forth notion of interdependence is what causes problems in professional sports. For the players, I think that it is more about the pride than the money. Players are not upset over the actually monetary figures, they are upset over the idea of being used by owners for profit. In my opinion, the players deserve over 75% of the profit gained in the NBA. This being said, I think that everyone would benefit if ticket prices fell, players took larger pay checks, and owners rightfully took lower paychecks. Is money and greed honestly going to ruin one of our countries greatest and most traditional past times? It is honestly sad to see the NBA in this tragic state, and for the sake of the players and fans(not the owners), I hope the lockout ends in the near future.

  6. michaelgerlach Says:

    As a born and raised Detroit sports fan I couldn’t agree more with maxmoray. Ever since the ’04 championship team the NBA hasn’t been the same. In my opinion both sides are at fault here and need to meet each other half way. The concept of team unity is completely gone in the NBA. “The Lebron Show” is a perfect example of this. That ludicrous, hour long, overdramatic excuse of a television event degraded Lebron’s entire team and fan base in Cleveland. A personal decision like that needed to be taken respectfully and privately. The Lebron controversy is just one example of the selfishness exhibited by many NBA “superstars”. Instead of promoting team unity they clamor for attention and detract from the team and the sport itself.
    Although I don’t like how the players are behaving I still feel that the owners are making this issue more difficult than it needs to be. The players are everything. They are the entertainment, the personality (even if it’s too much), and the excitement of the NBA. Yes, the owners finance the operations but without the players there is nothing. A 50-50 revenue split is only fair, especially considering the average length of an NBA career right now is only 5 years. Owners certainly aren’t giving up teams every 20 years let alone 5. Fair treatment of the staff, so to speak, is the only way to get this sport back on track.
    No matter what side you may agree with it’s evident that both sides have broken a social contract towards their fans. The fans spend millions of dollars a year supporting teams whether it’s buying season tickets or jerseys the fans make major investments in the game. And because both sides can’t come to an agreement and play the sport the fans expect to be played the NBA as a whole is breaking a contract with the public.

  7. Jason Cohen Says:

    This is obviously a very tricky legal situation deciding a solid collective bargaining agreement amongst the players and owners. Obviously, there are various other professional leagues the NBA can model themselves after, such as the NFL. The public was force fed details of the NFL lockout on a daily basis throughout the summer, and personally, I think the player’s deserve benefit in both scenarios. I mean, think about it, they are the reason these clubs are drawing in major revenue. While some think these Joe Schmo’s are replaceable, the fact of the matter is that these leagues are the paramount for a reason and these players ultimately deserve to bring in a large piece of the pie. Without their names on the back of those jersey’s being sold, and their brand being marketed in attempts to put fans in the seats, these clubs will not make a cent. These players have the ability to hold the momentum because in all honesty, they are the ones who determine whether or not they want to play (they also definitely have enough money to survive for a while during these labor talks).

  8. sbsmoler92692 Says:

    find it unsettling that this situation has had to result in a dispute that has escalated to the NBA lockout. It is unfortunate that nobody can settle and find a common ground to this dispute. I understand that the players have become spoiled and greedy, and want more money, while the owners of the team are on a power trip and want more authority with the team they “own.” The politics involved in the NBA are clearly up in the air, as this dispute continues to be prolonged and be on lockout. I do not think either side is more right or wrong, especially within this scenario and situation. Each side has grown to become more demanding and the behavior should not be tolerated until they reach an acceptable and less-demanding common ground.
    Simply, the NBA is not just a simple game of basketball, but has evolved into a national “brand,” that, revenues billions of dollars each year. The players now are not just athletes but are seen as “celebrities” and are even in some cases, brands of their own. Take for example the name Lebron James, he is not only a star athlete, NBA all star, and sports celebrity, but also a brand that endorses several types of products both nationally and internationally. So after this is taken into consideration, we can understand that the players have developed much greed over the years that this all-American sport has been revolutionized into such a spectator brand. Therefore, because they seek other compensations from their branding and endorsement deals, they should be much less greedy with their salaries and contracts that the NBA offers them. While I also understand that being a professional athlete is not a lasting career, I think the NBA has offered enough athletes generous compensations and salaries so that they are ensured as being set for the rest of their non-professional career.
    Regarding the issue of the owners, many whom are CEO and executive type middle aged wealthy businessmen; I think they all have ego issues and struggle for power constantly. They are trying to control a situation, which they have “bought” their way into. Interestingly enough, one of my family’s friends owns a small portion of a NBA basketball team, and is upset with the lockout. It is unfair to them, which they cannot seem to reach middle ground with the athletes on this matter. The owners are in charge of so many other businesses as is, that this is simply a hobby for them. Of which, they should not have to overly stress or worry about or even try to interfere and run the business. The NBA is its own brand and company, and the players play for their coaches and teams, not the team owners themselves. While the owners do have a lot of involvement with the teams they own, they should not do whatever they can in order to try to manipulate and control the situation.
    Overall, I really am in favor of each side coming to an equal middle ground and settling this dispute. Players need to realize they are making more than the average American, and will find other ways to make money via endorsements and advertisements if they are continually dissatisfied with their salary the owners are offering them.

  9. sbsmoler92692 Says:

    I find it unsettling that this situation has had to result in a dispute that has escalated to the NBA lockout. It is unfortunate that nobody can settle and find a common ground to this dispute. I understand that the players have become spoiled and greedy, and want more money, while the owners of the team are on a power trip and want more authority with the team they “own.” The politics involved in the NBA are clearly up in the air, as this dispute continues to be prolonged and be on lockout. I do not think either side is more right or wrong, especially within this scenario and situation. Each side has grown to become more demanding and the behavior should not be tolerated until they reach an acceptable and less-demanding common ground.
    Simply, the NBA is not just a simple game of basketball, but has evolved into a national “brand,” that, revenues billions of dollars each year. The players now are not just athletes but are seen as “celebrities” and are even in some cases, brands of their own. Take for example the name Lebron James, he is not only a star athlete, NBA all star, and sports celebrity, but also a brand that endorses several types of products both nationally and internationally. So after this is taken into consideration, we can understand that the players have developed much greed over the years that this all-American sport has been revolutionized into such a spectator brand. Therefore, because they seek other compensations from their branding and endorsement deals, they should be much less greedy with their salaries and contracts that the NBA offers them. While I also understand that being a professional athlete is not a lasting career, I think the NBA has offered enough athletes generous compensations and salaries so that they are ensured as being set for the rest of their non-professional career.
    Regarding the issue of the owners, many whom are CEO and executive type middle aged wealthy businessmen; I think they all have ego issues and struggle for power constantly. They are trying to control a situation, which they have “bought” their way into. Interestingly enough, one of my family’s friends owns a small portion of a NBA basketball team, and is upset with the lockout. It is unfair to them, which they cannot seem to reach middle ground with the athletes on this matter. The owners are in charge of so many other businesses as is, that this is simply a hobby for them. Of which, they should not have to overly stress or worry about or even try to interfere and run the business. The NBA is its own brand and company, and the players play for their coaches and teams, not the team owners themselves. While the owners do have a lot of involvement with the teams they own, they should not do whatever they can in order to try to manipulate and control the situation.
    Overall, I really am in favor of each side coming to an equal middle ground and settling this dispute. Players need to realize they are making more than the average American, and will find other ways to make money via endorsements and advertisements if they are continually dissatisfied with their salary the owners are offering them.

    • jacobdockser Says:

      While I can certainly understand the position of the players in this negotiation, outsiders are really being told “media spin” rather than the real truth in the dispute. While I will save the media portrayal to all communications enthusiasts out there, I will say this. Like all labor disputes (both sports-related and not), the corporations or owners are painted to be the bad guy.

      That being said, I side with the owners in this case. Many will argue, they are rich, spoiled, greedy old men who want to exploit the talent and increase profits. However, the truth of the matter is that the NBA as a business model is broken. Whether that is the owners fault or not is also up for debate. I do not think the players are greedy for wanting a share of profits, they are just looking out for their self-interests. I also argue that the owners are not trying to reestablish “control” and “power” over the players (although with Dan Gilbert and Lebron, this could be the case).

      The bottom line is, while the players are the ones playing, when a business model is broken and those who invest in a business are not making a fair return, something must change. The owners must get a better deal, not to make more money and regain control of the league, but to continue to provide basketball for consumers. If the owners don’t make profit, there is no incentive to continue the NBA and it will collapse.

  10. adamklein1 Says:

    Being an avid NBA fan I am able to easily connect to this post. As eager as I am for the NBA season to begin, I understand the complexity of this conflict. Neither the players nor the owners are willing to budge. This post takes the players side in this conflict, however, I feel that in spite of the owners eagerness to acquire power, they technically are the bankroll behind the team, and without all this money, for stadiums, players and equipment, their would be no NBA. The players get all the showtime and deservedly so being that they are the key to bringing in fans and revenue, however, the owners put millions of dollars on the line by owning these teams. They are the ones taking the risks. It is mind boggling that all other sports, including the NFL which suffered a temporary lockout, are able to keep good relations between the owners and the players. The article states that the owners were willing to do a “50/50” split. The owners are looking to make progress, but no evidence has come out stating the players are willing to negotiate. This brings about the question, is there going to be a 2011-2012 NBA season? Although I am an avid fan and want the NBA season to begin today, I am very pessimistic that the owners and the players will come to a true consensus. It seems as if every time progress is made, it is then regressed with another dispute the next day. That being said, I do not think there will be an NBA season at all this year. However, I will continue to follow the debate and hope a consensus can be reached.

  11. amandel12 Says:

    While this lockout has truly put the world of sports in a downward spiral, this conflict is much more complicated than most average sports fans can understand. While I do agree that the players are what make this game so intense and entertaining, the owners are the ones who are supplying the bankroll. Without the owners, nobody can get paid, renovations cannot be paid for and even more importantly the entire NBA would not be funded. The players live in the spotlight after one top-ten play or one prime time performance, yet the owners for the most part (aside from maybe Mark Cuban) get no credit or recognition by the sports fan base. It is the owners putting their money on the line for the league and although the players do deserve the praise they receive, fans need to understand that the risks involved in owning an NBA franchise are inconceivable if things go downhill for a franchise. While I wake up each morning praying for an agreement between both sides, it does not seem like the owners or the player’s association are in any rush to meet in the middle of their arguments. It took the NFL a while to finally come to an agreement, however their problem was far less extensive than the NBA’s problem. It seems that any chance at progress has been dismissed and the NBA is far from getting out of the mediating room and onto the court.

  12. euriosti Says:

    I think the issue of the NBA lockout goes far past issues of money and power. Few NBA franchises are making a significant amount of money. Even small market NFL teams earn more than a majority of the NBA teams. The owners are looking out for their franchise, and need the revenue in order to run a successful team. The players have short careers, and need to earn enough money to last them the rest of their life. The problem, in the players eyes, is that the owners have already established wealth. Many owners are successful businessmen and wouldn’t be significantly effected by losing money. In this case, it’d be ideal for the owners to take as much money as they need to run a successful franchise, and use the rest of the revenue to pay their players. The only problem with this type of contract is greed. Nobody wants to turn down an opportunity to make money. If the players could trust the owners to be good rulers, then the lockout would most likely be over. But simply, self-interest is what continues to extend the NBA lockout.

  13. euriosti Says:

    I think the issue of the NBA lockout goes far past issues of money and power. Few NBA franchises are making a significant amount of money. Even small market NFL teams earn more than a majority of the NBA teams. The owners are looking out for their franchise, and need the revenue in order to run a successful team. The players have short careers, and need to earn enough money to last them the rest of their life. The problem, in the players eyes, is that the owners have already established wealth. Many owners are successful businessmen and wouldn’t be significantly effected by losing money. In this case, it’d be ideal for the owners to take as much money as they need to run a successful franchise, and use the rest of the revenue to pay their players. The only problem with this type of contract is greed. Nobody wants to turn down an opportunity to make money. If the players could trust the owners to be good rulers, then the lockout would most likely be over. But simply, self-interest is what continues to extend the NBA lockout

    I think what is often overlooked is the impact on fans. The owners, the rulers of the NBA, are doing a poor job of making their people happy. I can’t think of a single NBA fan that is happy about the lockout. The owners have a responsibility to keep their fan base happy. How are fans supposed to spend their hard earned money at basketball games, when the lockout has showed you the owner’s greed? Owners should be doing their best to gain support from their most powerful ally, the fans. With no fans, the owners have no power.

  14. nnvirani Says:

    If there was one side that was clearly wrong, this lockout would never have hit Day 126. Both sides feel like they deserve what they are asking for. Owners want more power and players want more money. But how can any of us say that we would not argue for the same things if we were put into their shoes? NBA players are usually active for 5-15 years (with a few exceptions) and in that time, they make a majority of the money they will make throughout their lifetime. The average NBA player gets pulled out of college, before graduating, to join the pros. After retiring, they are left at a disadvantage to others their age that finished college and have work experience. Limiting their pay is just shortening the time before ESPN does an article on another broke once-upon-a-time superstar. This may seem a bit drastic, but the majority of retired players do not join the job market with high paying jobs – they rely on the money they made throughout their professional sports career.
    I am not going to only take the side of the players, I see where the owners are coming from, too. The owners supply the money, control who does what and basically acts as a CEO. If you think about a large corporation, the President/CEO is the head honcho, they have all the power. A basketball organization is not so different; it provides a good/service and charges consumers (fans) a price for it. So why shouldn’t the owners have all the power? Personally, I think that the NBA could not run without the players, if the main figures dropped out of the league, it would result in a loss of fans and revenue. The owners need these players but then again, the players need the owners. A law firm or hospital does not care that you can dunk form the free throw line. The players need a league to play in.
    As a New York Knick’s fan from Day 1, it is was nice to finally see my hometown team making the playoffs last season after many years. In a large city like New York, in a venue like Madison Garden and with the millions of fans, unbelievable amounts of money are pumped into the economy. This is the case in many of the other cities that have an NBA team/program such as Oklahoma City, New Orleans, Philadelphia, etc. A lack of a season would result in a loss of all the ticket and merchandise sales which boost so many local economies and provide so many jobs. A possible solution to the problem would be to lower the salaries given overall because if a player is good enough and deserves the money, endorsements will pay out higher than any contract. Players should recognize this and not take absurd amounts of money because there is no guarantees that they will continue to play at this level. Injuries and diminishing agility/stamina makes players worth significantly less, but once under contract, it does not matter.
    I know I focused mainly on the economic side of the spectrum, but this is the basis for most of the World’s disputes and problems. There is an obvious ego present for both the owners and players. However, letting that ego mess up an entire season in a program which was reaching new levels of popularity would hurt everyone.

  15. bisraelb Says:

    As a fan of the NBA, it is easy to side with the players. They are certainly what everybody shows up to the arena to see. However, from a business standpoint, the owners have all the leverage; and the bottom line is that the owners can financially survive a lost season while the players as a whole cannot. Sure, superstars of the likes of Kobe Bryant, LeBron James, and Carmelo Anthony have no problem touring the world and living lavish lifestyles while missing a few paychecks, but too many players do not have the bankroll to continue living the lifestyles they are used to living. While middle and lower class America laugh at the idea of millionaires not being able to support their family, the truth is many of them have spent most of their money without the thought of possibly missing future paychecks.
    On the other hand, NBA owners, most of whom are billionaires, have no problem missing part if not all the season if it means getting a deal that deem in their best interest. They want the money and the power, and are willing to wait for it. The next collective bargaining agreement can last for over ten years, and the owners will not risk a bad deal by pulling the trigger on an early agreement.

  16. kaitlinlapka Says:

    I can foresee this going two ways: This could be a major turning point in NBA history, changing the rulers of the game from the owners to the players. While I think the owners can not simply be abolished from the entire system, I can see the players taking more control of the system as well. All the players will not be able to play one day, and this seems like a reasonable introduction for them to managing their fated post-athletic careers and lives. On the other hand, I can see the players gaining some credibility here but mainly having things go back to the status quo. Yes the players create the game, the fame, and draw in the money and crowds, but the owners are the key behind their success. Not their athletic talents of course, but the positive brand and marketing of their team and the individual players. They are like the ultimate dictators of the game, that work behind the scenes. Like all other celebrities that would not be as successful without their managers, PR team, and makeup crew, NBA players have to make a few more desperate and controversial steps to fully overcompete their high-stakes, and not to mention very intelligent, owners.

  17. mzselig Says:

    The NBA is not only a popular sport in the US but it is also a popular sport around the globe; this being said, the lockout is killing the popularity of the game. I was talking with some friends on November 2nd and we realized, as we were flipping through TV channels, that there should be NBA games on, but because of the stubbornness of the two sides, the owners and the players, they were not on.
    As time presses on and the games still are not being played, people will undoubtedly find other sports to watch and entertain themselves with. I personally find this quite sad seeing that the playoff of this past year were some of the most exciting series I have ever watched and the outcomes some of the most entertaining and shocking in a long time. The surge in viewership and fan following generated by those playoffs would have continued into this season and driven the NBA to levels it has probably never seen before. On the part of the owners, the fact that they did not seize this opportunity to turn this surge in fanship into mounds of cash is poor business technique. On the part of the players, they are simply shooting themselves in the foot by dragging this debate out.
    On a more personal and more Michigan-oriented level, I am sure at least some of you know the name Darius Morris. This superstar pointguard and graduate of my high school in Los Angeles was en-route to becoming a huge player in the NCAA but the allure of an NBA contract drew him to the draft. Granted his huge success in being drafted by the Los Angeles Lakers, because of the fact that the lockout is in place, he is currently making no money and is technically not even a Laker, as the players and teams can not communicate. This loss on the part of Morris is rather huge; he is training, no doubt, but it still is not the same.
    The owners and players need to work this out. The NBA is a huge part of the American sports tradition and has more than a huge following. Each side has a right to the claims they are making, except one claim from the owners, I believe they are being ridiculous in their claims that they are losing power but that is besides the point. This stalemate needs to end and we need to see some basketball.

  18. andgoldberg Says:

    The owners and players both need to come to an agreement. It’s understandable that both of these groups are complaining over money because each does play a vital part in how the National Basketball Association functions. The owners obviously provide the infrastructure and funding to run each team, while the players attract the massive amount of fans and provide their audience with spectacular athletic ability.

    Each side of the lockout is reliant on the other. With no owners, the players would have no place to play and no formal organization behind each team. With no players, owners would have no one to play during the actual games. With this in mind, the players and owners need to come to a conclusion because of what basketball means to Americans. Basketball is an “American sport” orginating in Springfield, Massachusetts. The game was invented by a man named Dr. James Naismith. The history of basketball is tied into our country’s roots. There is absolutely no reason there should not be a season this year. The fact that there are more professional basketball games being played in Europe than America is essentially lowering the prestige of the NBA as a whole. Owners and players don’t realize that the lockout may eventually lead to much better competition from European players. The more we place stars like Kobe Bryant abroad, the more interest basketball receives in these foreign countries. With the delay of the NBA season, basketball is much less influential than it used to be in the states.

  19. weinben Says:

    You state rather emphatically that the players are what make the league and that the players should benefit the most from their skills, rather than the owners. I disagree. The NBA is, now, a multinational organization which is essentially a band between the owners who organize and finance the competition between players who are the very best at their trade. While the players are certainly the ones on the court, that is but the most superficial level of the NBA. As it is a business, there is much more to it than simply putting players on a court (which the owners pay for) and watching them play. All the advertisements, merchandizing, brand marketing, facility upkeep, and so on, all attribute to the success of the NBA. Players are investments in the eyes of the owners and just a single part of the puzzle which makes the NBA work. While, no doubt, certain players have enormous cross over ability to influence and appeal to people outside the sport, what allows them to showcase their skills is all the tedious and exhausting work the owners and backroom management does which enables superstars like Kobe, D-Rose and Kevin Durant to showcase their amazing talents.
    Also, the symbolism of giving players a larger chunk of the pie is not appropriate for long term success. As we have seen in other sports, when players are given too much power then are only concerned with their own short term benefit. Owners are trying to build long term franchises which will be around for decades if not over a century. Having a successful franchise can change and benefit a city and millions of people who watch the game and invest their time, emotion and pride into their team. Often, a team embodies the characteristics of a city. But in order to have this, the owners must have enough power, and more than the players, to plan for long term success.
    In more philosophical terms, we can say that the NBA is in need of a Leviathan of sorts. Hobbes makes the case for not only a social contract but an absolute ruler, one who makes the choices for his people for long term success as they relinquish certain powers to him which promote long term and widespread hospitality and happiness. The players, in this case, need a revised contract with the owners, who would be the Leviathan, or sovereign leader. The owners need more power because they are the ones who are simply more invested in the larger scale viability of the organization.

    Reply

  20. zschmitt17 Says:

    I have no idea how the lockout has gone on this long. Short and simple the owners are right here. The NBA players signed contracts under the old bargaining agreement and should have to fulfill there promise. The owners are the boss in this situation. Say I was working at the local Burger King and I walked up to my boss and demanded that he give me more money, that would not end well, I would either get fired or be on my boss’ bad side. So for the NBA players to go against their contracts and their bosses, should end in them getting fired or a pay cut. Sure the game would lose something for a year or two with losing players like Lebron or Dwight Howard, but new talent would show up ready to play for whatever the owners pay them. Lets face the facts these players are earning millions of dollars to play basketball, if I was offered that much money to play basketball I would take it and try my hardest not to make the owner mad.

    The NBA is a business and like any business the owner has control over what happens and who makes what. If the players have any problem with this then they choose the wrong business to go into and should rethink their career.

%d bloggers like this: