Photo by Frederick M. Brown | Getty Images

While the lockout continues to sort itself out after a 16-hour marathon mediation, players not involved in the talks (and thus not involved in the gag order) have been able to speak their mind on their current and possible future unemployment. With Laker Derek Fisher heading the player talks in New York, newly opted-out free agent and former Laker Shannon Brown spoke with Stephen A. Smith about his current position.

Brown spent much of the interview focused on the overall message of the NBA players, focusing little time on his own free agency status which may or may not be affected by changes to the salary cap in an new collective bargaining agreement. In regards to the future of NBA players and salaries in the league:

We don’t want to get taken advantage of, to put it very blunt,” Brown said. “We don’t want to feel like we’re out there basically giving our services, giving our bodies, giving our time, being away from our families and all of that stuff being taken advantage of and we’re not reaping any benefits from it. That’s how we kind of feel at this point.”

Players stand to lose approximately $170 million in total salary for every two weeks of the season that are canceled. Brown pointed out the hypocrisy of owners still being able to collect on lucrative television contracts in the meantime.

They are getting money from the TV (networks) and the TV (networks) are paying them because they want to see us play,” Brown said. “So, they’re getting paid off our services without us giving any service anyway.

“Does that make us look bad or does that make them look bad?”

While different media outlets have interpreted the extended talks on Tuesday as both a good and bad omen, Brown was stoic in regards to there being a 2011-2012 NBA season:

If we were to lose a whole season, I think the NBA would never be the same,” Brown said. “The NBA would never be able to recover its fans or none of that for the rest of the history of the game.”

“I think we (players) are (prepared to miss the season),” Brown said. “We don’t want to though. We’re prepared, but we don’t want to.

Talks have continued in New York as of this morning; we’ll keep you up to date at Laker Nation if any news breaks from the meetings.

  • Lieneke

    Shannon, you poor dumb baby, that’s a pretty dumb statement, “If we were to lose a whole season, I think the NBA would never be the same,” Brown said. “The NBA would never be able to recover its fans or none of that for the rest of the history of the game.”“I think we (players) are (prepared to miss the season),” Brown said. “We don’t want to though. We’re prepared, but we don’t want to.”

    If you honestly believe missing the entire season would mean the end of the NBA, that it would never recover, why would you participate in killing the NBA? If they can’t recover, how, or why, would they need to pay players anywhere near what they make today? Better check to see what your earrings will bring on Craig’s List.

    • Mandesiles

      booo! get out of town!

  • Ronin999

    Commissioner Stern may be the problem here. Check out quoted comments from Bryant Gumabal regarding this:
    “Stern’s version of what’s been going on behind closed doors has, of course, been disputed. But his efforts were typical of a commissioner, who has always seemed eager to be viewed as some kind of modern plantation overseer treating NBA men as if they were his boys. It’s part of Stern’s M.O. Like his past self-serving edicts on dress code or the questioning of officials, his moves are intended to do little more than show how he’s the one keeping the hired hands in their place.
    Some will, of course, cringe at that characterization, but Stern’s disdain for the players is as palpable and pathetic as his motives are transparent. Yes, the NBA’s business model is broken, but to fix it, maybe the league’s commissioner should concern himself most with a solution, and stop being part of the problem.”

  • R.

    I tend to agree w/Shannon.  The NBA will be damaged considerably if they miss this season.  The last year was full of so much hype and drama (what with the Heat, etc.), that it brought in many new viewers.  Those new viewers are going to be lost this year.  The owners (yes, plantation owners – that’s what owners are – that’s what they’re called, right? they own, what … — a franchise?  a stadium? no … *people* – Gumbel was right) are going to lose money, and in a year when the season resumes, they won’t have as much revenue anyway, to pay the players, so they’ll win out. 

    In the meantime, the momentum of a successful season (last season) is busted up. 

    Now, the teams will have to play musical players, as the teams get reassembled to take into account the different financial structure.  The Lakers still have pieces to win a championship 2 years from now, and maybe Kobe will get a LOT of rest and healing to work up to his ‘second wind’ for the next 5 years.  (that can be the only good thing that comes out of this).

  • Turboman1747

    Brown is a Moron another overpaid player that can’t make a shot when it counts. Hes only good in the preaseason. This Jack wagon just wants a free ride. Im gonna laugh when he leaves the lakers and rides the bench like Farmer. These guy need a reality check!!!!!!!!!!!!!!