Feature: The 12th Man

The NBA's Labor Dispute Enters Crunch Time

Author: Scott Boyages
Published: February 20, 2011 at 5:13 am

One of the prime topics of conversation during NBA All Star Weekend is the league’s labor agreement or lack thereof.

The league is enjoying an unprecedented level of popularity and its future is bright. Midway through the 2010-11 season, the league's talent level is deeper than ever and many of the those talented players are just beginning their careers. The NBA’s marketing machine is world class and interest in the league is at an all-time high.

However its road to success is approaching a giant pothole – otherwise known as its next labor agreement — and to me we’re entering a fascinating point in league history.

Forbes Magazine has reported that 12 of the 30 NBA teams lost money last season. And NBA Commissioner David Stern, several weeks back, claimed that league owners were projecting a cumulative loss this season of approximately 350 million dollars.

Stern has declared that the current labor situation is untenable because the players are being paid too much guaranteed money. The players for their part are digging in and this labor dispute shows few if any signs of getting resolved anytime soon.

There is also one glaring problem that I personally feel the NBA needs to fix because, if you ask me, it’s the one negative the league has faced for as long as Stern has been commissioner. Each season, too many teams have zero chance of making the playoffs.

Let’s face it, if you’re a fan of the Timberwolves, Wizards, Nets and a bunch of other teams, you’re basically watching games to see the opposing team because your team’s best chance to improve is to lose as many games as possible, get a high lottery draft pick and then have the ping pong balls fall the right way on lottery night. Luck plays too big a role in who’s good and who’s not.

Continued on the next page

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Article Author: Scott Boyages

Newbie Technorati writer whose major loves are branding and sports.

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