In a pre-emptive move to avoid potential labor unrest down the line, the NBA and the National Basketball Referees Association came to terms on a new deal Saturday.
Adrian Wojnarowski of Yahoo Sports reported the two sides came to terms on a seven-year collective bargaining agreement that will take effect immediately and run through 2022, replacing the final year of the current deal.
The NBA's Twitter account confirmed the news on Aug. 13.
While referees are often ridiculed, the NBA realizes just how important they are to the success of the league. Look no further than the NFL referee lockout in 2012 for evidence of why highly trained and experienced officials are so vital in professional sports.
The NFL's replacements made many poor decisions that negatively impacted the league, resulting in the NFL's quick settlement in the wake of the infamous "Fail Mary" play in a game between the Seattle Seahawks and Green Bay Packers.
NBA referees have a difficult job, and the league acknowledged that Saturday by rewarding them with a new, lucrative deal.
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