Saturday , Mar , 21 , 2009 Oly Sandor

CBA drama: 5 reasons for NBA work stoppage in 2011

The Pacers and Nets aren’t alone. Charlotte, Memphis, Milwaukee, Minnesota, New Orleans, and Sacramento were having problems before The Great Recession. The meltdown only worsened their already precarious situations. The NBA is bleeding red. So the stakes will be high when the Players Union and owners renegotiate the current Collective Bargaining Agreement before it expires in 2011. Look for Commissioner David Stern to try for, and likely get, major concessions. And a work stoppage is probable …


CBA drama: 5 reasons for NBA work stoppage in 2011Every week, HoopsVibe drops a basketball related list for fans to weigh-in on. We call it ‘Listed’ …

The world economy is doom and gloom. And the NBA is not immune.

Indiana will lose close to thirty million dollars this season. New Jersey is also in trouble, allegedly tapping the NBA’s emergency loan program for twenty million dollars to service existing debt. The Pacers and Nets aren’t alone. Several clubs are struggling with The Great Recession.

So the stakes will be high when the Players Union and owners renegotiate the current Collective Bargaining Agreement before it expires in 2011. Look for Commissioner David Stern to try for, and likely get, major concessions. And a work stoppage is probable. 

In this edition of ‘Listed’, HoopsVibe the blog is dropping five contentious issues that could result in a work stoppage. As always, read the post, form an opinion, and get at us in the comment box below.

5) Entry level contracts … 

Stern wants two concessions. First, he’ll try to secure for owners an escape clause on rookie contracts after two seasons (all first round picks are guaranteed three years with the club holding the option on the fourth year). The hope here is teams can get dead weight like lottery bust Patrick O’Bryant off the books sooner.

Second, at the same time, the commissioner will attempt to extend the salary structure of rookie contracts by an extra year. The goal is to pay top young players entry-level dollars for longer and make them wait an extra year for their lucrative second contract.

4) Mid-level exception …

Owners need protection from their own frivolous spending, which means Stern will want salary cap loopholes closed. The players can say adios to the Mid Level Exception. The MLE allows teams to sign a player to a contract equal to the average NBA salary (5 million dollars), even if that team is already over the salary cap.

3) Salary Rollback … 

In 2005, NHL players had to take a double-digit pay cut as part of their new CBA. Expect NBA owners to ask for, and receive, something similar.

2) Guaranteed contracts … 

Again, owners need protection (from themselves), so Stern will push for the players to accept NFL style contracts. The league’s head suit may have a point. Long-term, guaranteed pacts seem out of touch with the current economic climate.

1) Hard cap … 

In the 1980s, Stern saved the NBA and avoided labour unrest by creating a soft cap. For years, the players and owners prospered under this system as league revenue grew at an exponential pace. 

Things have come full circle. In 2011, the league is again on shaky ground. And Stern will push for a hard cap with fixed costs as his swan song as commissioner.  

What do you think about the NBA’s business model? What issue will be particularly contentious? Get at us in the comment box below and come back to HoopsVibe The Blog for more NBA tidbits. Photo courtesy of talkradionews.