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Split Decision: Players are the main victims in NBA lockout

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Let’s get one thing clear, no one wins in a game of millionaires and billionaires. The NBA lockout has affected us all, and it’s looking more bleak for the players, the fans and the NBA.

Though many believe that the players are being selfish, it is really the NBA owners that are in the wrong in this lockout. The disagreement as it stands is 1 to 2 percent in basketball-related income.

The previous collective bargaining agreement gave players 57 percent of the basketball-related income.

During mediation the greatest offer the owners could muster was 51 percent of the basketball-related income.

That is the owner’s basically saying “you do all the work and make all the money, but we’ll only take half of what you earned.”

That is no different than running a sweat shop where the laborers work for a minimal amount of money, but do all the work.

These players make all the revenue. Players like Kobe Bryant and LeBron James make the NBA owners millions of dollars every year just because of jersey sales.

Their names alone attract enough fans to go to games that otherwise would not sell out.

The Sacramento Kings were 29th in attendance last year, according to ESPN.

However, when Kobe Bryant and the Lakers were in town, you can bet attendance soared, just for a chance to see Bryant. This is just one of many examples of the players carrying the owners.

You might also believe that a 6 percent difference for the players is not that big of deal.

However, in a billion dollar industry each percentage point is worth up to $40 million, according to USA today.

Even a 1 to 2 percent drop in the basketball-related income for the players could result in them losing anywhere from $500 million to $1 billion over a 10-year agreement.

Recently, the NBA threatened the players union by giving them a deadline for the 51 percent offer, by saying they will drop their offer to 47 percent if the players do not accept it.

The owners’ fear mongering is unacceptable and is no different than a bully on a playground. The owners’ pockets are much deeper than the players, they do not need the NBA, the players do.

The players have conceded on many other issues like the salary cap and the luxury cap that would already limit players’ salaries.

The least the owners can do is give the players what they deserve.

The owners lose revenue every day the league is in a lockout. However, with a billionaire’s view of things, they do not seem to care.

It seems as if killing off the players is more important than agreeing on a new CBA.

The owners need to get off their pedestal and start negotiating. Get ready fans, we might all be in for a long winter if the owners get their way.

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Split Decision: Players are the main victims in NBA lockout