According to NBA Players’ Association head Billy Hunter, the NBA owners will lock the players out tonight after the current collective bargaining agreement expires. Both sides were set to meet for 12 hours today to try and hash out an agreement, but that ended abruptly when Hunter made his announcement this afternoon.
All league business is currently on hold, which means there will be no new free agents, no contract extensions and no trades. Also, if the lockout continues for too long, there is a chance games will be missed next season.
The last time the NBA had a lockout was 1998, when the season had to be shortened to 50 games. The players also lost that round of negotiating, but seem to be headed back to another impasse. According to another report Thursday, players should still receive checks until October, so that may be the breaking point for a deal to get done.