NBA Owners: Take Deal Now, Or It Gets Worse - Spokane, North Idaho News & Weather KHQ.com

NBA Owners: Take Deal Now, Or It Gets Worse

NEW YORK (AP) - NBA Commissioner David Stern gave the players an offer and a deadline: Accept a chance to earn up to 51% of basketball-related income by Wednesday or get ready for a deal that's a whole lot worse.

He wouldn't call it an ultimatum, but it sure didn't sit well with the union.

"The players will not be intimidated," attorney Jeffrey Kessler said early Sunday after eight hours of negotiations stretched late into the night. "They want to play, they want a season, but they are not going to sacrifice the future of all NBA players under these types of threats of intimidation.

"It's not happening on (president) Derek Fisher's watch. It's not happening on (executive director) Billy Hunter's watch. It's not happening on the watch of this executive committee."

Kessler said the proposal was really 50.2% for the players and said the chance of them ever reaching 51% was a "fraud" and an "illusion."

Whatever. If players don't agree to it by Wednesday, Stern said they would get a deal that would guarantee them just 47% of basketball-related income (BRI) and call for a flex salary cap.

"We hope that this juxtaposition will cause the union to assess its position and accept the deal," Stern said.

Thus ended another frustrating day, one that puts a lengthy 2011-12 season in doubt.

"Today was another sad day for our fans, for arena workers, our parking lot attendants, our vendors. Very frustrating, sad day," Fisher said. "We, for sure, unequivocally, made good faith efforts to try to get this deal done tonight. And we're at a loss for why we could not close it out."

And it remains difficult to see how they can. Stern certainly wouldn't speculate on the chances.

"I'm not going to make percentage guesses or anything like that. We want our players to play. We'd like to have a season," he said. "These are the terms upon which we're prepared to gear up and get in as many games as possible."

Players and owners met with federal mediator George Cohen for more than eight hours, and Stern said Cohen offered six "what if?" recommendations relating to the BRI split and the salary cap system.

Stern said owners accepted the first five and would put them in writing in a formal proposal to the players, hopefully Sunday. But it wasn't acceptable Saturday, with Stern saying Kessler rejected it.

"I think it's fair to say that speaking on behalf of the union, Mr. Kessler rejected the mediator's recommendations and our proposal," Stern said. "But hope springs eternal, and we would love to see the union accept the proposal that is now on the table."

Although insistent on no more than a 50-50 split, owners will offer the players a band that would allow them to receive between 49% and 51% of revenue. However, Stern's description of how it would work was confusing, and Kessler said under "the wildest, most unimaginable, favorable projections, and we might squeeze out to 50.2."

Fisher said the players' proposal would have given them about 51%, with a portion taken out to use for retired players' benefits

Day 128 of the lockout came at the end of a tenuous week in which both sides seemed as much at odds with themselves as each other. Some players took part in conference calls to discuss the option of decertifying the union and filing an antitrust case against the league, while hardline owners were in favor of offering the players 47% now and not going beyond 50.

Although the lengthy meeting offered hope of compromise — despite the rare attendance of Hall of Famer and Charlotte Bobcats owner Michael Jordan, and Portland Trail Blazers billionaire owner Paul Allen, considered to be hard-liners — Kessler said owners never really made any.

"They came in here with a prearranged plan to try to strongarm the players," he said. "They knew today they were sticking to 50, essentially 50.2. They were going to make almost no movement on the system, and then they were going to say, 'My way, or the 47% highway.'"

He added there was no reason to talk again before Wednesday if the owners stick to their current position.

Other items in the new owners' proposal related to rules for clubs paying the luxury tax and for the use of the midlevel exception. Players have said the system issues are just as important as the BRI split, because they fear owners' proposals essentially would prevent clubs in the biggest markets from being free-agent options.

A month of the season already has been lost, and more games could be in jeopardy soon. Nobody said the decertification threat made any real impact on the discussions, but Fisher also said there's not a deal yet that's worth a vote.

If they can't agree to one by Wednesday, it will be even harder to find common ground. Players already rejected a flex cap in June.

Fisher and Kessler again questioned the owners' willingness to negotiate, but Stern said they were ready to make a deal — by Wednesday.

"We want to allow the union enough time to consider our most recent proposal, and we are hopeful that they will accept," he said.

As for the Wednesday deadline, he added that it "doesn't aid the negotiating process to just leave it hanging out there."

  • Most Popular StoriesMost Popular StoriesMore>>

  • Police confirm body of missing Spokane man Ian Powers found in bay; Death ruled accidental

    Police confirm body of missing Spokane man Ian Powers found in bay; Death ruled accidental

    Tuesday, November 20 2018 11:35 AM EST2018-11-20 16:35:21 GMT

    SAN FRANCISCO - The Santa Clara Police Department has confirmed the body of 32-year-old Ian Powers from Spokane was found in the water near Alviso Marina on Saturday. According to the department, the Coroner's Office has determined that the cause of death was salt water drowning. The manner of death has been ruled an accident. 

    >>

    SAN FRANCISCO - The Santa Clara Police Department has confirmed the body of 32-year-old Ian Powers from Spokane was found in the water near Alviso Marina on Saturday. According to the department, the Coroner's Office has determined that the cause of death was salt water drowning. The manner of death has been ruled an accident. 

    >>
  • Citing E. coli outbreak, US officials say don't eat romaine

    Citing E. coli outbreak, US officials say don't eat romaine

    Tuesday, November 20 2018 3:34 PM EST2018-11-20 20:34:25 GMT

    NEW YORK - U.S. health officials are telling people to avoid eating romaine lettuce because of an E. coli outbreak that has sickened 32 people in 11 states. The Food and Drug Administration says it's working with officials in Canada, where people are also being warned to stay away from romaine lettuce.

    >>

    NEW YORK - U.S. health officials are telling people to avoid eating romaine lettuce because of an E. coli outbreak that has sickened 32 people in 11 states. The Food and Drug Administration says it's working with officials in Canada, where people are also being warned to stay away from romaine lettuce.

    >>
  • How you can help the family of 8-year-old boy randomly stabbed at Spokane Valley gas station

    How you can help the family of 8-year-old boy randomly stabbed at Spokane Valley gas station

    Monday, November 19 2018 9:46 PM EST2018-11-20 02:46:19 GMT

    Several locals are trying to help the family of an eight-year-old boy, who was randomly stabbed at a gas station Saturday. Rayel Von Quade said she and three others (Salem Rose Sovereign, Quincey Brooks and Dani Loup) have been in touch with the Bush family. (KHQ has reached out to the family and have not heard back.) "They're, of course, very overwhelmed and stressed out right now and she's been dealing with a lot of messages from a lot of people coming through. But she says t...

    >>

    Several locals are trying to help the family of an eight-year-old boy, who was randomly stabbed at a gas station Saturday. Rayel Von Quade said she and three others (Salem Rose Sovereign, Quincey Brooks and Dani Loup) have been in touch with the Bush family. (KHQ has reached out to the family and have not heard back.) "They're, of course, very overwhelmed and stressed out right now and she's been dealing with a lot of messages from a lot of people coming through. But she says t...

    >>
HD DOPPLER 6i
/