The stage has been set for a battle royale between NFL owners and players.
The two sides are pulling no punches legally, politically and financially against each other. Economic leveraging, legal battles, political roundups and public awareness campaigns are just the tip of the iceberg for what’s to come.
There has been more talk about the perhaps unavoidable lockout than there has been about Sunday's Super Bowl between the Green Bay Packers and Pittsburgh Steelers. Studies from the NFLPA show that 30-40 percent of NFL fans already have this looming drama on their minds and are going to monitor the situation closely. That number is expected to rise substantially as the deadline closes in.
The idea that the NFL may not play a single game in 2011 is frightening to most fans, and this clash of the titans will prove disastrous to industries worldwide, from ticket sellers to video games.
Understanding all of it can be very overwhelming and confusing. There are thousands of articles, summaries, graphs and charts out there explaining different aspects of the situation. Putting them all together is hard to comprehend though.
This is the easiest way to understand the NFL lockout and its economic impact.