The NBA Players Association and Owners talk to the media during this summer's labor talks. After NBA Commissioner David Stern refused Chris Paul's trade, it seems a rift has formed between the players and owners.
Turmoil—the NBA evidently has plenty of it after the last few months of labor talks, but the recent trade veto separates the players and owners even more.
Not only has David Stern made a mistake by vetoing this trade, he has created a season which will be overshadowed by terrible decision-making.
The first crack in the glue that held the NBA together was the end of the NBA labor deal. The media blitz that ensued ensured fans knew the players and owners did not like each other. The biggest issue from my perspective was the revenue share.
At one point, the owners offered a deal which would have given the players a 52 percent share of basketball-related revenue. This deal was emphatically denounced by the NBA Players Association. Talks continued with players hoping a better deal would be orchestrated. Meanwhile, the owners were scheming about the best way to increase their fortunes.
Eventually both sides agreed on a deal that was unappealing to both sides. The deal was not signed because the sides were happy; it was signed because both sides were sick of losing money.
That brings us to present day. A blockbuster trade would have sent Chris Paul to the Lakers, Pau Gasol to the Rockets and a group of mid- to upper-level players to the Hornets. While many argue the trade was fair, the more important argument is whether the league should have stepped in.
The NBA does own the Hornets, but how can GM Dell Demps do his job if his long hard work is struck down within hours after its completion?
Do you believe the trade between the Lakers, Hornets and Rockets was fair?
Plenty of analysts, former players and current players have expressed their consternation at the refusal to let the trade go through, which shows the rift forming between players and owners.
I believe a rift will also form between some owners if this deal does not go through. I also would not be surprised if Demps stepped down in the near future.
If the NBA is really going to uphold this decision, they better hope the members of the last blockbuster deal—moving LeBron James and Chris Bosh to the Miami Heat—showcase their talents and win a ring or simply bring in lots of revenue.
The Big Three in Miami is all the NBA has to hold onto, and if the NBA cannot get it together soon, I will be watching a lot more NHL.