Tag: collective bargaining agreement
It seems that this week, the NBA’s ongoing negotiation between the team owners and the National Basketball Player Association made a turn for the worst. Just last week, LA Lakers’ Derek Fisher came out giving a very promissory outlook of the upcoming season. Fisher was telling his fellow players that they should consider getting ready to begin the training camp. But just a few days later, the panorama has drastically changed. So bad was the lack of progress that the start of the NBA season was thrown into doubt. This was a key labor meeting and after the negotiations failed, the chances of reaching a new collective bargaining agreement anytime soon have seriously diminished.
Union executive director Billy Hunter says players were prepared to make a “significant” financial move, but found owners unwilling to budge off their positions. Union president Derek Fisher of the Lakers said he would tell players that “the way it looks right now we may not start on time.” So, according to Fisher that season might not start on time, we might experience a shortened season, but at least there is some hope of having a season after all.
For what we can tell from the sources we’ve consulted, it seems that despite the players union will to give up part of the interests, the team owners didn’t move from their initial proposal. In a way, Fisher implied that the NBA, that is the league, and the team owners were not willing to meet them halfway. The main issue here is that little is known of the negotiation issues. What we can say is that according to the league, over 20 teams finished the season with red numbers; but the players are saying that those numbers are not too realistic. The players do acknowledge that the owners should get a little extra from the shared revenue, but certainly not as much as what they are now asking for.
Billy Hunter said that the salary cap was one of the issues that was keeping the negotiation from moving on. The owners are still holding to their desire for changes to the salary cap structure. According to Hunter, a hard cap remains highly untenable to players.
On the other hand, we shouldn’t get completely frustrated with the situation at hand. The season might be short, but we would very certainly have an NBA Championship this year. It is very unlikely that these guys are not going to negotiate once they start losing millions for every game not played.
The primary revenue source for the NBA is the broadcast revenue from televised rights fees. NBA commissioner David Stern has repeatedly noted that his league is losing $300 million annually. The NBPA certainly disputes that figure. According to 2011 estimates by Forbes and Adweek the current NBA television deals may be undervalued by $300 million per year. A 10-year deal could mean that when the new television rights agreement is signed in 2015, the owners can take the better part of that money and hopefully solvent the NBA’s teams economic situation.
It’s all about the money. If the guys involved in the negotiation of a new collective bargaining agreement have learned anything from what just happened with the NFL and its lockout, it’s that at the end, it’s all about who take’s the biggest share. Now, what the fans out there should take into consideration is that the difficulties expressed between both parties make the NFL’s tag-of-war for a new collective agreement look like a kids game. The NBA teams reportedly are not making money. With the exception of a few large-market teams, NBA said that over 20 of its teams are finishing their year with red numbers. That’s a very strong argument for the team owners, and yet, it’s also a hard to believe or prove, for that matter.
The NBA players association is saying that the financial information provided by the teams is inaccurate, and even thought they agree that some teams are struggling financially, the fact that the NBA reported very high revenues this last season only proves that there is no way 20 teams could officially finish their fiscal year with losses. Team owners are proposing sharp cuts in salary and contract lengths. Player’s are not willing to give that up so easily. Particularly when there are others (the commissioner) who are making money regardless of what happens during the negotiation of the new CBA. So the turn of this story is that now David Stern, the commissioner might have to give up his multimillion-dollar salary during the work stoppage.
It all started with a clever comment on the social media. Then it sort of went viral and couth everyone’s attention. A couple of days ago Philadelphia 76ers center Spencer Hawes publicly questioned via Twitter why there have been “no rumblings about a pay cut for (David Stern) while he asks every single player to do so.” It seems now that this is officially David Sterns chance to walk the talk. And that might hurt his finances… not really. Consider for starters that David Stern salary, although not publicly released each year, has been reported to be around $20 million.
That’s a lot of money. Especially among players and athletes around the NBA. $20 million might be a bit high, but considering other reports we have been able to find, most will agree that David Stern makes somewhere between $15-to-16 million a year before bonuses. It seems that Stern makes half a million annually per franchise. 30 NBA franchises add up to $15 million before the bonuses kick in. Regardless fo the exact number, he makes a lot of money, far much more then what 97 percent of the players he represents make.
Let’s break these numbers down. For starters, let’s take into consideration that only twenty-one NBA players are scheduled to earn at least $15 million during the 2011-12 season. These players include Kobe Bryant’s $25,244,000 with the Los Angeles Lakers all the way down to Rudy Gay’s $15,032,144 with the Memphis Grizzlies. Now, let’s take it up a notch. Four NBA players are contracted to make at least $20 million: Bryant, Washington’s Rashard Lewis, San Antonio’s Tim Duncan and Boston’s Kevin Garnett.
Yes, we know that back in 1998, David Stern drop his salary while the NBA lockout forced teams to play a 50-game regular season. It’s very possible he’ll have to give up on his salary again this time around. It just wouldn’t look right any other way.