Players Reject NBA’s Offer, Begin To Disband Union

NEW YORK (AP) — The NBA players rejected the league’s latest offer Monday and have begun the process to disband the union.

The decision likely jeopardizes the season.

“We’re prepared to file this antitrust action against the NBA,” union executive director Billy Hunter said. “That’s the best situation where players can get their due process.”

He said players were not prepared to accept the NBA Commissioner David Stern’s ultimatum, saying they thought it was “extremely unfair.”

“This is the best decision for the players,” union president Derek Fisher said. “I want to reiterate that point, that a lot of individual players have a lot of things personally at stake in terms of their careers and where they stand. And right now they feel it’s important — we all feel it’s important to all our players, not just the ones in this room, but our entire group — that we not only try to get a deal done for today but for the body of NBA players that will come into this league over the next decade and beyond.”

Fisher, flanked at a press conference by dozens of players including Kobe Bryant and Carmelo Anthony, said the decision was unanimous.

Stern had urged players to take the deal on the table, saying it’s the best the NBA can offer and warned that decertification is not a winning strategy.

Over the weekend, he also said he would not cancel the season this week.

Regardless, damage has already been done, in many ways.

Financially, both sides have lost hundreds of millions because of the games missed and the countless more that will be wiped out before play resumes. Team employees are losing money, and in some cases, jobs. And both the NBA and NBPA eventually must regain the loyalty of an angered fan base that wonders how the league reached this low point after such a strong 2010-11 season.

The proposal rejected by the players called for a 50-50 division of basketball-related income and proposed a 72-game season beginning Dec. 15.

On Sunday, the league made a very public push on the positives of the deal — hosting a 90-minute twitter chat to answer questions from players and fans, posting a YouTube video to explain the key points and sending a memo from Stern to players urging them to “study our proposal carefully, and to accept it as a fair compromise of the issues between us.”

In the memo, posted on the league’s website, Stern highlighted points of the deal and asked players to focus on the compromises the league made during negotiations, such as dropping its demands for a hard salary cap, non-guaranteed contracts and salary rollbacks.

Union officials repeatedly have said the system issues are perhaps more important to them than the split of basketball-related income, but owners say they need fundamental changes in both to allow for a chance to profit and to ensure more competitive balance throughout the league.

The previous CBA expired at the end of the day June 30. Despite a series of meetings in June, there was never much hope of a deal before that deadline, with owners wanting significant changes after saying they lost $300 million last season and hundreds of millions more in each year of the old agreement, which was ratified in 2005.

Owners wanted to keep more of the league’s nearly $4 billion in basketball revenues to themselves after guaranteeing 57 percent to the players under the old deal. And they sought a system where even the smallest-market clubs could compete, believing the current system would always favor the teams who could spend the most.

Monday marked the 137th day of the lockout; the NFL lockout lasted 136 days.

Copyright 2011 by STATS LLC and The Associated Press. Any commercial use or distribution without the express written consent of STATS LLC and The Associated Press is strictly prohibited.

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  • tom

    fight the power.

  • Centurion


    What the networks need..are reruns of 2 1/2 Men.

  • Denver Deadite

    Where’s that tiny violin…

  • Jonathan

    It’s going to be disappointing not getting to see D. Rose play, but we should thank the NBA and the players for allowing american citizens to hold onto their money a litlte longer

  • Dan Rakow

    I would like to see CBS sign a temporary partnership with TNT to have College Basketball Games to be shown Thursday Night on TNT being Produced by CBS Sports.

  • Peter M. Arel

    NBA Owners SHOULD NOT use scab players because the fans WILL NOT TOLERATE SUCH ACTION;THEY SHOULD LET THE UNION DECERTIFY and tell the players and their union to “fish or cut bait”!The Players’ Association should be eliminated anyhow. The people who live in or near NBA cities should also take a strong stand. City officials SHOULD DENY A LEASE to NBA franchise owners who lock out their players;the same should also apply when the Players’ Association calls a strike. Both are injurious to the local economy and unjustly throw people out of work. These work stoppages also hurt local business owners(restaurant owners and their employees, and the owners and employees of local sports bars).

    • Lil' Bycracke

      You hire scabs in a strike, not a lockout.

      Main point: The business model is broken. Any physical body you put on the court to shoot hoops will lose you money as a business, talented or untalented.

      • SPAULDING!

        Ding ding ding ding.

        I’m going to throw this out there: The evolution of big (huge–mega) business sports:
        NFC–AFC merger. Gambling possibilities abound, but it still captured the imagination of the first TV generation. Prints money in a watered-down league.
        Conn Smythe. First indoor sports venue. in the holy land of hockey. Hockey begins to stretch its limits.
        George Steinbrenner buys the Yankees. He’s rich enough to be on the C.R.E.E.P. list. Don’t know where baseball money grows (probably Fox Sports), but L.A., Washington and Tampa Bay don’t know, either.

        NBA: Lakers–Celtics rivalry. Now, every team has to blow up their salaries to beat these guys.
        Point is, you have to consider that some day the tap is going to be turned off, before your front office contains a junior vice president for marketing. Or, a assistant to the road general manger.
        Good luck to the stadium personnel. and the restaurant owners.

      • Denver Deadite

        The main point SHOULD be that major sports teams are now like the banks: apparently too big to fail.

        It is believed that half the NBA teams are losing money. Which means that, unless the owners are willing to accept the losses, half the NBA should be folding up shop.

        Yet nobody dares talk contraction, regardless of how much money may be lost.

        The Phoenix Coyotes of the NHL should’ve never been moved from Winnipeg in the first place. They’ve lost more than $100 mil in the last decade. And while they may not have been as profitable in Winnipeg, they wouldn’t have lost nearly that much.


    I agree Denver Deadite.

    And, I just want to say, I don’t disapprove of the guys in the dark blazers in a sports front office. It has to be really rough trying to sell luxury sky boxes (but, they seem enthusiastic when they are doing it.) But, I’m saying the ships were getting too big to steer for some cities, once they started subdividing (and dividing the divisions) office duties to scratch out every available dollar.
    At some point, the equation should be simple: attractive product, affordable product, or economical operaton. You can’t continue to write enormous checks to players that cannot perform adequately beyond a second-year player.

  • Peter M. Arel


  • Peter M. Arel

    One business I’d really like to see benefit from the lockout is the bowling alley-NATIONWIDE! It would benefit because fans who enjoy bowling would have more time to indulge in this pastime. I enjoy bowling myself and I have friends who also enjoy bowling. They can also(the fans who’ve been treated as an afterthought and are tired of it ) can and should also form groups to take walks through malls, play basketball themselves, anything to get good exercise and stay active;and I hope they’ll take my advice to heart.FORGET THE NBA!

  • Peter M. Arel

    THE NBA SHOULD NEVER REGAIN ITS FAN BASE! I am hoping that Fan Apathy BECOMES A FATAL DISEASE THAT DESTROYS THE NBA! The owners and players have treated the fans as an afterthought for way too long!Now the fans Must “STOP PAYING RANSOM TO KIDNAPPERS” by BGOYCOTTING THE NBA INTO 2014!

  • Peter M. Arel

    I am hoping that many fans who ARE fed up with greedy players and owners will turn to activities they can enjoy that cost a lot less than paying through the nose to see an NBA game(whether live or on TV). This would include bowling, walking through malls (and parks, too, when the weather is conducive to that kind of activity), playing softball and basketball, and lots more. This is an ideal time-from now until the summer or 2014.PLEASE HELP MAKE THE NBA COMPLETELY IRRELEVANT now that the players in the NBA have made a move to decertify their union.MAKE BOTH SIDES PAY FOR THEIR FOLLY!

  • Ticket Broker Calls Possible Loss Of NBA Season A Tragedy « CBS Chicago

    […] The players’ association rejected a new proposed deal from the league on Monday, and then began disbanding, paving the way for a lawsuit that will take the dispute from the bargaining table to court. […]

  • Peter M. Arel

    Concerts, Ice shows(featuring figure skaters on ice performing to the delight of their audiuences) hockey games(wherever possible) should COMPLETELY REPLACE NBA games as ARENA EVENTS WHENEVER THERE HAS BEEN A WORK STOPPAGE BY THE NBA, whether it is a lockout of the NBA players by the NBA owners or a strike orchestrated by the NBA Players’ Association.Fans can attend the concerts, or play basketball themselves, frequent the restaurants and/or sports bars near the arenas,etc., but at least that way there will still be money coming in even when NO NBA games are being played.LOCK OUT THE NBA PLAYERS AND OWNERS!

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