Reports: NBA Owners, Players To Resume Talks; Cancellations ‘On Hold’
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NEW YORK (WFAN/AP) – Maybe there’s some hope for NBA fans after all?
Officials from the NBA and players’ association will meet Wednesday, less than a week after three days of talks with federal mediator George Cohen couldn’t produce a deal to end the lockout, according to The Associated Press and the New York Daily News.
The Daily News also reported that two weeks of additional cancellations to the schedule “have been put on hold, at least temporarily.”
Talks broke down last Thursday after players said owners insisted they agree to a 50-50 split of revenues before they would further discuss the salary cap system. By not reaching an agreement last week, the NBA will likely be forced to cancel more games to go with the two weeks that were already scrapped.
There was a far nastier tone than usual to the breakdown, with union president Derek Fisher of the Lakers accusing Deputy Commissioner Adam Silver and Spurs owner Peter Holt, chairman of the league’s labor relations committee, of lying during their press conference.
But just as they have multiple times this month when they walked away from the table without another meeting scheduled, the sides are getting back at it relatively quickly.
The meeting, first reported by the Daily News, will be small groups from each side, a source told the AP.
Commissioner David Stern will take part after he was forced to miss the session last Thursday because of an illness.
Stern told WFAN’s Mike Francesa without a deal last week, he feared games could be lost right through Christmas. The sides tried, spending 30 hours together while meeting for three straight days for the first time since the lockout began July 1.
They made some progress on minor issues, but continue to be stuck on the two main ones.
Players proposed lowering their guarantee of basketball-related income to 52.5 percent, leaving the sides about $100 million apart annually based on last season’s revenues. They are also sparring over the length of contracts and the raises attached to them, along with the penalties teams would face for exceeding the luxury tax level.
Hoops fans: do you have any hope that there will be a 2011-12 season? Be heard in the comments below…
(TM and Copyright 2011 CBS Radio Inc. and its relevant subsidiaries. CBS RADIO and EYE Logo TM and Copyright 2011 CBS Broadcasting Inc. Used under license. All Rights Reserved. This material may not be published, broadcast, rewritten, or redistributed. The Associated Press contributed to this report.)