Smack / Oct 11, 2011 / 1:07 am

The NBA Cancels The First 2 Weeks Of The Season; Kobe Speaks On MJ

What a shocker (please). The NBA season won’t start on time after talks stalled once more. Sad. Just sad. We feel for everyone who wants to see real basketball. We feel for all the employees who make their living off the NBA. We feel for Nick Young‘s hair. We feel for the integrity of the game. We even feel for the two sides who can’t seem to figure this trash out. But now it’s official: the first two weeks are gone because David Stern says there is a substantial gap between the two sides. Yesterday, there were reports that the sides were making progress, but at this point, it’s all a game of shadows and mirrors. Some people want to believe it’ll get done. Others say it’s going to take a long time … SBNation reports the first two weeks are already axed without much hope for a quick resolution. Derek Fisher and CP3 got the kids tweeting LET US PLAY! #StandUnited but their cause could easily become a battle of attrition. Does anyone think the NBA players will have to concede the BRI split sooner or later? NBA owners are, across the board, high multi-million, or even billionaires, with multiple revenue streams. It’s simply mathematics really. Billy Hunter and co. will be backed against a wall once the checks stop coming in November with players stateside unable to get jobs overseas and rookies still unsigned. We wouldn’t be surprised if, when push comes to shove, the players come to terms with a compromise much closer to 50/50 in the new CBA … Jeff Zillgitt of USA Today took this picture of Gregg Popovich, who just so happened to be in NYC and just so happened to run by the hotel where lockout meetings were taking place. Pop swears he had no idea … Kobe Bryant would love to play with Carmelo Anthony. I think we all knew that. They’re boys. Bryant believes an inside presence is the key to winning, and that Anthony would fulfill that. He’s probably still thinking about the 2009 Western Conference Finals. Bryant also said this about his relationship with Michael Jordan: “He hates when I say it, but I’ll say it anyway: I call him and he calls me right back every time.” Kobe said the two have such a strong relationship, and that he has so much respect for Jordan that he’s not directly trying to pass his numbers (cue up the stupid “Kobe copies MJ!” rhetoric as if that’s supposed to be a bad thing). Bryant says he just wants to win as many rings as possible because at the end of the day, who’s to say who the best player of all time is? You can’t. It could be MJ or Magic or Russell or… All a player can do is win as many rings as possible … Our fam over at Panini America had a huge meet up with Bryant over the weekend. If you’re a big card collector, you probably want to check out these sick Bryant autographsRoger Mason Jr. will get in on the action with a charity game at U.Va. featuring former ACC standouts against stars like Kevin Durant, Rudy Gay and John WallDeron Williams is struggling in Turkey. Nevertheless, we’re grateful he opened up his journey from the NBA to the Turkish Basketball League in a diary series on ESPN.com’s Nets Report. Deron’s first entry chronicled his family’s whirlwind voyage and shed light on the limited practice and preparation he got with his teammates before the season started. We didn’t expect him to rip out the gate but to see him have such growing pains is interesting. At any rate, he’s taking the adjustments in stride … Do you want to run with Derrick Rose? This Saturday in Chicago, you’ll be able to. Some of the Dime family was hooked up yesterday with the new D-Rose kicks, and we can say they’re pretty nice (you’ll have to wait for a basketball performance review). And those new sneakers are the reason for this big event, which you can follow by liking adidas basketball’s Facebook page. Rose is putting on a pickup game somewhere in Chicago, and all week adidas will be dropping clues as to where it is. The first fans to arrive at the special location with the password will earn access to watch the games, possibly play and some will get the chance to lace up a pair of adiZero Rose 2. If you aren’t in the Windy City, watch the game on their Facebook page … Kenyon Martin was treading in some hot water yesterday with some of the comments about AIDS made on his Twitter page. But he tweeted last night that it wasn’t him. We figured that all along. The stuff he was saying was just way overboard … Udonis Haslem is on Twitter, looking 10 years too old … And is Myck Kabongo the next Rajon Rondo? Someone thinks so … We’re out like the first two weeks.

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  • BRUCE

    Damn, I miss Jordan so much.

  • beiber newz

    Okay Kobe. Do ya thing.

  • Jzsmoove

    The players will buckle so why are they even procrastinating and wasting paychecks for a warped principle they are fighting for?

  • pipdaddyy

    What’s so special about Nick Young’s hair, anyone have a picture?

  • First & Foremost

    @Jzsmoove – The players don’t believe the owners are going broke. Imagine a homeless person holding up a sign on some street corner begging for money. Now imagine if that sign was actually an Iphone4S and he is standing in front of your car so you can’t move until you give him money. That is what the owners are doing.

    The owners can manage billion dollar multinational companies yet all of sudden lose all business sense when it comes to basketball. So even after huge tv deals, advertisements galore (name an NBA award/event that isn’t sponsored by someone), increasing ticket prices, yet they collectively lose $300M annually. If the owners are claiming to be broke, open up the financial statements and prove it. The owners have done nothing to prove they need a different BRI split.

  • http://facebook.com/escribame Big Freeze

    The truth is the players made out like bandits with the previous CBA. It’s time to get back to reality. A 50/50 split of the BRI is the fairest deal for both parties.

    The players need to stop trying to save face and just sign the deal. The owners are paying these guys millions of dollars to play a game. I repeat, millions of dollars to play a game. A game that the players should love playing. A game that millions of people play for fun (free) everyday.

    So yeah, I’m siding with the racist owners on this one.

  • jdizzle

    @pipdaddyy its just a big ass ‘fro

  • First & Foremost

    So what if players are getting paid millions of dollars to play a game. Musicians make millions of dollars for singing a song. Celebrities get millions of dollars for having cameras follow them around.

    Even though it is the entertainment industry, it is still their job. You pay hundreds of dollars just to watch them play a game. Even though… “A game that millions of people play for fun (free) everyday.” In these rough economic times where players need to come to grips with reality, why don’t you just watch free games? Oh that’s right, the NBA offers a product that is so good, you are willing to pay for it even though you get a substitute for free. If it was just a game you’d watch any ol’ game for free. But the NBA isn’t just a game.

  • Big Island

    F&F – Musicians and celebrities get millions. And then the label, or agency says “you know what, I am not going to pay you that amount anymore”. Or the deal you signed for $.10 for every CD you sold doesn’t seem like a good idea anymore because it’s all digital.

    I look at it like this: The owners drove the truck and got it stuck in the mud. The players were having a great time in the truck the whole time. Once it got stuck, and the owners stopped and said “hey, we can’t drive in the mud anymore”, but the players want the same ride that they had. In the meantime, neither one is actually pulling the truck out of the mud. The players are saying that they will go ride in someone else’s truck, but that truck isn’t really that cool. The owners have other trucks so they will let this one sit in the mud for a bit. The players are in the mud, in the middle of nowhere, and it’s a long walk home. In the end, the owners will want to drive the truck, because their NBA trucks are where they get their fame, so they’ll take it in the mud a little bit. And the players will push it out of the mud and get back in because without the owners, they have no ride.

  • beiber newz

    @ First & Foremost…
    Your analysis in post 5 sounded brilliant. Nice way to put it really.

  • Big Island

    You know what? I am changing my mind. It’s racial.

    White owners aren’t going to pay black players.

    One line. The whole reason is one line. I apologize to everyone who said it was a racial issue and I said you were crazy. I hadn’t seen the light yet. But it’s just easier to say White Owners Hate Black Players.

  • First & Foremost

    @Big Island, Imagine if me and you work for the same company. You know how much money I make because you work in the payroll department. On pay day you ask me if you can have some money to pay your bills. The conversation goes as follows:

    “FnF, Wassup. Hey can I get a few hundred off you real quick. These bills snuck up on me this month?”
    “Haha, stop playin.”
    “Naw really, I need some more money. You don’t want me to be thrown out on the street do you?”
    “I don’t know about this. By the way how is your side hustle and stocks doing right now.”
    “Glad you asked, they are both doing great.”
    “Well then…”
    “So how about that money, can you help me out?”
    “C’mon now, you JUST got paid. Where did your money go?”
    “For real, I need just a little bit.”
    “Answer the question and I’ll think about it.”
    “Give me some money and I’ll think about answering your question.”
    “I guess you’ll just be SOL now won’t you.”
    “I guess I just won’t submit your timesheet until you give me some money, won’t I.”
    “How is this my problem that you don’t have money? You can’t withhold my pay just cuz you are broke.”
    “Watch me.”
    “Fine then, I’m going to work for someone else. The only way you can get me back is if you pay me again.”
    “You do that…”
    “DON’T POINT YOUR FINGER AT ME. I AINT YOUR CHILD!!!”

  • http://www.geturweightup.com Chicagorilla

    LMFAO @ Big Is

    Long weekend bruh?

    @FnF
    great analogy in your first post. Now if you can make those words rhyme, you could be a rapper.

  • http://law.ufl.edu Big Freeze

    That’s a nice analogy, Big Island.

  • http://law.ufl.edu Big Freeze

    And FF, it is just a game. Its called basketball. Basketball is bigger than the NBA. So if the season is canceled, basketball and its fans will live. College basketball will always be there, and the emergence of overseas ball means there are more alternatives to NBA than ever.

    It just looks like the players are being unreasonable throughout this process, when the majority of people think NBA players make way too much money. The players have cleaned house lately, but they need to come back down to earth now. A 50/50 split is fair. Players need to sign the deal

  • http://www.zwani.com/graphics/funny_pictures/images/88funny-pictures128.jpg JAY

    I’m with Big Freeze… it’s basketball.

    But at the same time, the NBA is a business. Those guys are trying to get as much as they can – not just for next season, or two seasons, or five seasons. The deal they accept now dictates what the players will receive down the line. Have you ever been involved in labor disputes? Unfortunately for me, I’ve been involved in three different disputes with three different companies. The one thing that Unions stress is that if you give up something which is currently in your deal means you may never get it back. So if the NBA players give up 7% they might never ever see it again. THAT’s why they are being so stubborn. They are sticking up for what THEY believe the players down the road will want.

    But like i said in my first sentence, at the end of the day… it’s fuckin basketball. They love playing ball, don’t they? They’re playing it right NOW. They are traveling the country and playing in different parks and courts everywhere, and they are doing it for pennies compared to what their teams will pay them. The owners are a bunch of bitches too but I hope they hold out for as long as they can. As a fan, I’ve been getting sick with a lot of the players’ diva-like attitudes for a while now. They are the most primadonna athletes in the world (including the WNBA). Without the NBA, I’m still going to get my basketball fix with the collegiate season around the corner. As far as I’m concerned, the NBA players can all kiss my ass. That diva shit has got to stop, and with this college season lining up to be as exciting as some NBA teams, NOW is the best time to send a message because us ball fans will still get our basketball fix. It hurts me to say it, but if they cancel the whole season to put those players in their place, do it. It’s unlikely that scenario will happen but if it does, from where I’m standing, it’s all good. If they want to gain my sympathy they need to start interviewing the Shane Battiers, the Matt Bonners, the Leon Powes; basically the mature, professional, good guys of the league. The last thing I want to hear is a guy like Dwayne Wade complaining about how he is not being treated as an equal, and then not showing up after a break in the meeting. Show up, or shut up.

  • First & Foremost

    Alright, fine. It is just basketball. However there are better ways to getting this dispute solved. Increase the age requirements. That will solve the diva problem Jay mentions. Older players that have developed physically, mentally, and have a better grasp of their talent/skills now playing a rookie contract would be better for the game. Players would end up making less money because 2-3 years would be at the NCAA salary level. Also, players couldn’t demand a max level contract at the ripe age of 24 and again at 29.

    So what if a 19 year old is NBA ready. if he can get better spending 3 years in college, then that shows his work ethic. Instead of finding out he his lazy and doesn’t work all that hard when it is time to give him a contract extension but since he was your lottery pick you can’t bail now because you are too prideful to admit your pick sucked.

  • http://www.zwani.com/graphics/funny_pictures/images/88funny-pictures128.jpg JAY

    I agree 100% about raising the age restriction. Too many boys in the league.

  • JBaller

    50-50 splits are universally considered fair, so I think they need to do it. Anybody ever offer you 57% of something? No, I didn’t think so. I’ve traded half a sandwich for half a pack of ho-hos (1 ho) but never 57%.

    Good analogy about the truck Big I. They all better start pushing if they wanna get anywhere.

  • Big Island

    F&F – That would be a good analogy, but the problem is that I own the company you work for. And I have done a poor job, brought in some bad guys, paid too much for people like Freeze and JAY (no offense guys, it’s just an example) and now the company is doing bad. The industry is fine, and a couple of companies do well because they are in LA and NY, and some companies took a different approach so they are doing OK too. But the company you work for isn’t doing well, and most of the companies in the industry aren’t doing great either. The companies who are doing well see where it is getting out of hand because the market as a whole is changing, so they agree to close with us until we can get things balanced a little bit. We aren’t very elastic in the sense we can’t change our focus or business on the fly, we are part of a bigger picture. Yeah, I screwed up. No, it isn’t your fault. But it’s my company so (again, no offense) fuck you. Go freelance for awhile. Go work in China, or Europe, or cruise the US looking for some work to keep your skills sharp. Ultimately I hold the cards. You can raise a fuss, and lots of people will be on your side, and I am in the wrong. Then Beiber shows up, dressed like a lumberjack, and Chicagorilla gets his picture taken in a club, with a $5000 bottle of champagne and a groupie, all while you are saying that you guys just want to work and we won’t let you. At the end of the day, I ran the company poorly. I need an overhaul of everything to be a middle of the road company again, and you’ll come work for me again because China, Europe, and your freelance work just suck and you know it. If you don’t like it, get out of sales and go do graphic design in another industry. In the meantime, all of the mailroom guys, cafeteria guys, cleaning crew, IT, marketing, they are all looking at you saying “come on, you’re getting a fair deal, not as good as your last one, but fair, and we can all come back to work”.

    Bottom line, the owners screwed up, but they aren’t trying to screw the players. If they were offering 25% of the revenue, no contracts longer than 15 days, and a $10 million hard cap for each team, then yeah. But it’s fair, just not as awesome as it was.

  • Mt. Pleasant

    I could be wrong but I think the age restriction isn’t higher because the players union wouldn’t agree to it.

  • First & Foremost

    @Mt. Pleasant – You very well could be wrong. Since that idea effectively reduces a players career income, puts him at a greater risk in college, and adds miles before he is even drafted, the idea won’t fly. However, teams that are borderline good or could get better had that 1 pick not been wasted. The Bobcats sure do wish Brandon Wright had panned out. Anthony Randolph’s New Ink on his forehead says ‘Potential’. We have increasingly weaker drafts and teams not getting better through the draft [Out of the 30 NBA teams all you got is OKC and Portland] because it is watered down with old boys that just aren’t ready.

    @Big Island – in any other industry, if you owned the company and had several bad years of huge losses, you’d be voted out by your board members. Audited by the SEC or IRS and possibly thrown in jail. How does a company expand their market share, produce a good product, but somehow, SOMEHOW can’t turn a profit. WHERE DID THE MONEY GO? Oh my bad, there isn’t a governing body that holds your financial record keeping accountable for anything. So if you want to sell your company for $500M you can and no one says a mumbling word.

    How are these franshices sold at prices but no one can make money off of them?

  • Big Island

    F&F – It’s because professional sports teams are a bad investment as a whole. People buy them because they want to own a sports team. It’s ego driven. Some teams in larger markets are going to make money off of merchandising and ticket sales. The other teams, some guy has made a ton of money, says “I’ve always loved the ____, I am gonna buy them.” Franchise worth increased for years because the value of the NBA was increasing. It’s the same way people bought houses for $400K and they were worth $600K 2 years later when they did nothing to them. The owners now are the guys who bought at the peak of the market and the value decreased because they were never really worth what they were paying to begin with. NBA teams are one of the worst business opportunities in the world. If you had $5 billion, would you make more money buying $500 million in Facebook shares or Google, or buying the Sacramento Kings? This is where the owners and Stern piss me off. The teams aren’t business investments. They are ego driven purchases that just happened to make money hand over fist while the league was growing because it’s a limited commodity. Well now the league isn’t growing, it should be contracted by a team or two, and the net worth of the teams has dropped. When the worth isn’t growing, but players are getting the same percentages that they were getting when it was growing, well that leads to trouble.

    Say you bought houses for $300K, and then paid me $100K to paint them, mow the lawn, etc., and then you sold them for $600K. Like clockwork. But it was only because the housing market was going crazy. Now you can get the house for $300K, but the market is only going to let that house be worth $380K. You can’t pay me $100K to fix the houses anymore because you lose money on every flip. Most NBA teams are in that position. So should you come out of your pocket $20K on every house? If you want your name on the house that badly, you will. But you are taking $20K from something else to float your house business. And then I say “well they are paying for me to do the work on the house, not you buying it! I’ll go build houses in China!” For $30K a house. Or I fix houses with my friends for no profit. The NBA teams profited no matter what for years because the league grew. Like the .com boom. Eventually people realized, hey, this is a terrible business. The players have one skill, they play ball. That’s it. Everything they do is based on their fame from playing ball. The guys who pay them, where the NBA isn’t going nuts like it was and it didn’t matter how much they spent because they could cash out with a nice profit, are saying “um, we can’t live like this anymore. We need to get a different deal.” The players will cave.