Head to Head: NBA Lockout

AS the NBA lockout continues to whittle down this coming season, the question remains: who is at fault and does anybody really care?

NBA lockout? Just let me know when its over. The interest meter hardly moves when talking about this lockout.

The NBA is fresh off its most successful season, arguably since the Jordan days, and no fans seem to have the need or urgency for the sport to come back the way they did with the NFL.

Basically, nobody cares.

It’s a different feeling than the panicky seven-month lockout the NFL had. There was fear of the NFL lockout months before it came into effect. It’s a shame the NBA can’t continue to grow in popularity off a very exciting season.

The problems? There are plenty. The main issue is figuring out how to split the $4 billion the league makes every year. Another big issue that needs to be addressed is the guaranteed contracts. The owners want to reduce the number of, or even eliminate, the guaranteed contracts. I’m with the owners on this one. When Gilbert Arenas and Rashard Lewis barely average double digits per game make about a million more per check than Dirk Nowitzki and Pau Gasol, there is a serious issue.

The season also has too many regular season games and it’s hard for them to get our attention anyway early in the season with college and pro football still going on. The ratings don’t really go up until late in the year. The playoffs are also too long, lasting almost three months. The problem with a long season and long playoffs is that people’s interest will be on-and-off.

That’s why people aren’t up in arms about this lockout. So many people just give me a shoulder shrug or a “Meh,” when asked if they are concerned with the stoppage. Two weeks have already been canceled up until Nov. 14 with surely more games to be canceled.

By comparison, one week missed in the NFL lockout would have been seen as a national catastrophe.

The owners are in this lockout for the long haul. They have been planning ahead for this for years leading up to the lockout and won’t stop until they get their deal. The owners have the power and seem to be willing to wait it out till the end. Because realistically, they are the ones writing the checks.

Some could argue that the games in basketball don’t mean much until February, after the all-star break. A shorter season would be very interesting.

So NBA, get your plan together. You badly need it. And with the NFL more popular and exciting than ever, and the baseball playoffs doing so well, maybe you can come back in January or February.

It would be better that way.

 

Lockouts are being seen more and more amongst professional sports, and fans are tired of waiting. The National Basketball Association is currently on lockout, and money seems to be the issue.

The NBA and David Stern have officially canceled the first two weeks of the regular season. The NBA estimated that two weeks of canceled games would result in $200 million in losses, according to The Associated Press. This is unacceptable, and is bringing a lot of bad attention to the league.

So why would owners and players not be willing to do everything possible to come to an agreement?

The answer is simple; greed. The players don’t want to give up any part of the revenue share, which is causing owners to be unable to pay their players. The Miami Heat is a prime example of this. With three max contracts, they were banking on paying their players with revenue money, but if the players are resistant on changing their current 57-43 percent share of all NBA revenue, owners will continue to lose money each season when they go to pay their players.

This lockout isn’t only affecting the players getting their paychecks, for teams like Sacramento; it puts a hold on any potential progress toward securing the team’s franchise. With so much talk about how the lockout affects the building of a new arena, people have forgotten that the team is only guaranteed to stay for this season. If the season is drastically shortened, it could easily result in the relocation of the team.

Enough is enough. The players and owners need to get this problem fixed quickly, or the effects will start to be seen among the public as well. The cancellation of four Sacramento Kings home games in the first two weeks of November is “going to be a big hit” economically on some people in Sacramento (businesses near Power Balance Pavilion, as well as employees of the arena and franchise), Mayor Kevin Johnson said.

This lockout is shifting from affecting just the players and owners, to now affecting each team’s surrounding economies. The line needs to be drawn here. Now that fans are being affected, the follow-ship of the NBA will slowly start to dissipate. If the lockout were upheld today, it would bring a complete sigh of relief for not only those involved in the situation, but the surrounding fans as well.

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