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article imageNBA: Team owners, players' union, to meet Friday

By John Louie S. Ramos     Jun 22, 2011 in Sports
As the National Basketball Association's (NBA) current collective bargaining agreement nears its expiration, team owners and representatives from the players' union will meet Friday to forge a new labor deal and to avoid a possible lockout.
The Associated Press reports that the salary cap system is "the biggest obstacle to a new collective bargaining agreement." Salary cap systems have long been used in professional sports to level the playing field between large and small market franchises.
NBA commissioner David Stern has been pushing for what he calls a "flex cap," in which NBA teams can spend as much as $62 million on players' salary. NBA players' union president, L.A. Lakers guard Derek Fisher believes otherwise. Fisher described Stern's proposal as a "distortion of reality" and will just result into a harder salary cap system.
Because of heavy financial losses, NBA team owners are pushing for a harder salary cap. Two seasons ago, Stern revealed that NBA team owners are projected to lose some $400 million. According to Nola.com, Forbes reported that 17 out of the 30 NBA teams, including decent teams like the New Orleans Hornets and the Sacramento Kings, have lost money in 2010.
The NBA later brought the Hornets, shouldering huge financial liabilities. The Kings, on the other hand, almost relocated to Anaheim, California.
The current CBA, which was ratified in June 2005 and is set to expire by the end of this month, shares 57 percent of league revenues to players. Salary caps were also adjusted yearly, starting at $49.5 million in 2005 to $58.044 million last year.
Since the start of the 2010-2011 NBA season, team owners and the players' union have met several times to forge a new CBA that will replace its 2005 version. If and when a new CBA isn't made by the end of this month, a lockout seems inevitable.
In 1999, the NBA experienced its worst lockout after team owners and the players' union failed to negotiate a new CBA. While the NBA season was saved, the lockout resulted to a shortened regular season, significant drops in television ratings and gate attendance and millions of dollars in losses.
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