NBA Lockout 2011: Is NBAPA Getting Raw Deal with 50/50 Offer?

Scott Redick@Sports_25toLifeContributor IOctober 10, 2011

NBAPA Labor Talks: Derek Fisher
NBAPA Labor Talks: Derek FisherPatrick McDermott/Getty Images

The players of the NBA are not as greedy as they are being made out to be.

They have taken to Twitter today claiming they will Stay United

Some people are looking at the owners' 50/50 offer and saying the players should accept it because, well, what is more fair than 50/50.

Everything is not as it seems, however. The players are not getting a 50/50 split in this scenario.

Pictured below, to the right, is what ESPN's Ric Bucher had to say on the subject when fans began to insinuate the same thing to him on Twitter.

To make this as easy as possible, just say the owners make a fixed amount each year in income on the NBA.

They immediately take 66 percent of that and take it off the table, and the players never even get to negotiate for that money.

Then they act like they are the generous ones by offering a 50/50 split of what they deem BRI, but really this offer is 16.5 percent of the total income that the NBA makes.

I am not saying that I don't think they should compromise around 51 percent (I think they will). However, you are portraying players as lying about how much they want to play, when they pay people in these negotiations to get them a fair deal.

For a great look at a player's perspective, check out Steve Nash on Twitter.

Ric Bucher BRI Tweets
Ric Bucher BRI Tweets

A decrease in their cut of the BRI as well as a decrease in the salary cap would be a MONUMENTAL loss for the NBAPA that has made great strides toward being where they want to be in the last couple of labor negotiations.

Another thing that makes me suspicious of the owners is the news coming out today that they are close to agreeing on a Mid-Level Exception and a Flex Cap.

These were the things that created the "broken system" that called for the lockout in the first place. However, it does look like the NBA will add some sort of amnesty clause or what most like to call the "Arenas Rule" that will finally allow teams to shed one bad contract off of their salary cap. This could make for one of the most exciting transaction periods in the history of the NBA after we just had one last summer.

What NBA owners do need to fix is the people handling their money (GMs and presidents). They are the ones that paid players like Arenas and Rashard Lewis more than they were worth. The biggest contracts aren't even the basis of the problem. The NBA stars—including Michael Jordan, Magic Johnson, Kobe Bryant and Lebron James—have been the most underpaid star athletes in pro sports because of the max contract regulations in the last CBA.

The real problem is poor decisions in giving mediocre players big contracts. (Travis Outlaw made $7 million last year to average 9.2 PPG on 37 percent shooting.)

The L.A. Lakers payroll was over $91 million last season, while the Oklahoma City Thunder were under $54 million. While both teams had solid seasons, it proves that a big payroll isn't necessary to win (or maybe just that Thunder GM Sam Presti is a genius).

But for the players association, backing down at this crucial time and making every concession would just ensure that NBA owners will cause a lockout each and every time the CBA comes up in the future.



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