The game of chicken is over.
It all ended in Manhattan last night when both cars swerved at the last minute, narrowly avoiding a disastrous collision that would have certainly produced a large number of casualties. It’s been 149-days of empty labor meetings, monotonous press conferences and the complete dismissal of logic and reason. For months, both sides have been essentially saying the same thing:
“We don’t want to lose money, so we’re willingly going to lose money to show you how serious we are about not losing money.”
It was that kind of egotism and downright foolishness that almost wiped out the NBA season (along with about $4 billion in revenue), and while many of us blame greed for what transpired, it was greed that ultimately saved the day. When it came right down to it, the financial ramifications of cancelling NBA basketball on Christmas day just couldn’t be ignored.
Specific details of the agreement are still unclear (and a few system issues still need to be agreed on), but according to sources familiar with the negotiations, the players are set to receive around 50.5% of BRI. The elephant in the room is that both sides still need to hold a formal vote for their members, something Commissioner Stern spoke cautiously about.
“We expect our labor relations committee to endorse this deal, this tentative agreement, and we expect our Board of Governors, at a meeting we will call after that, to endorse the deal.”
NBPA executive director Billy Hunter also spoke with caution, but expressed confidence in the tentative agreement.
“We’re confident that once we present it, the players will support it.”
We expect that specific details of the agreement will spill out over the next several days. While we wait for those, here’s what we know for sure:
- The NBA will begin a 66-game season on Christmas Day.
- The Lakers will host the Bulls as part of a Christmas Day triple-header. Also of note, the Miami Heat will visit the Dallas Mavericks in what will now be Ring Night for the Mavs.
- NBA Training Camps will begin on (or around) December 9th, along with a shortened (and sure to be frenzied) free-agency period.
And with that, we close the chapter on the NBA lockout, and start a new one. Welcome back, NBA. Don’t ever cheat on us like that again.