The Gig Is Up, It's Time For The Players To Accept

Everybody knows the players are done, when will they finally tap out?

Over the weekend NBA commissioner David Stern laid out a deadline for the players to accept the owners newest proposal. That proposal much like the previous offers, revolve around a 50/50 split of the BRI.  Stern's threatening a shrinking offer that will start at offering players a 47 percent share of the BRI and over time getting worse the longer the players refuse to sign. Like I said in a previous article, the owners have already won, and this latest power move is just another example of that being true. I believe the owners have reached their final offer and know that the players will have to give in soon; they're just waiting for the players to tap out. I'm not sure if that day will come on Wednesday, but it should.

The players can hold their breath for as long as they want, but think about it; why would the owners increase their offer at this point? They're losing money everyday, money they'll need to make up, and if you're already going to lose a bunch of money anyway, you might as well get the deal that you want. The deal just simply won't get any better. The owners know they have the players close to their breaking point, the "stand united" mantra has been abandoned. We have Derek Fisher and Billy Hunter in disagreement, we have factions of the players wanting to de-certify, other factions wanting to take a deal now so that they can start receiving checks again; if they can't agree amongst themselves what they want, they sure as hell can't win against the owners.

Rockets guard Kevin Martin can see the writing on the wall, Sam Amick of Sports Illustrated recently posted this quote, "If you know for sure the owners are not moving, then you take the best deal possible," Martin wrote in a text message to SI.com. "We are risking losing 20 to 25 percent of missed games that we'll never get back, all over 2 percent [of basketball-related income] over an eight- to 10-year period [of the eventual collective bargaining agreement]. And let's be honest: 60 to 70 percent of players won't even be in the league when the next CBA comes around." Martin goes on to say, "...My opinion -- which is just one of 450 players -- is that if it comes down to losing a season and 100 percent of the money, we all definitely have to sit down and think about reality. That doesn't sound smart to possibly become part of the [country's] growing unemployment rate."

Martin isn't the only player saying this, the number is growing, and eventually the union as a whole will cave. If the players thought Stern was bluffing, I wouldn't blame them for continuing the fight; but he's not bluffing and they know it. The season won't be canceled tomorrow if they reject the deal, but there's no way the deal will get any better. Like in every part of society, every person has different goals and agendas that effect their action. Players like Kobe, LeBron, and Carmelo have the money to attempt to wait out the owners; but they aren't the majority. Most players aren't stars, most players haven't been paid max contracts, and unfortunately most players haven't managed their money very well.

The players are running out of money, they know the owners aren't going to budge, and frustration is starting to set in, leaving them with a feeling of defeat and the need to take the best deal they can get. That deal is the one currently being offered. The players should take it, but they've held their breath for a long time already, they may continue doing so until they pass out. We'll find out tomorrow.

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