It all started when the NBA owners realized they were losing hundreds of millions of dollars each year. Although their earnings balanced the equation to make it worth the while, the owners wanted compensation or a solution for their losses. What they suggested was an overhaul of the financial system which would ultimately ensure the chance of making larger profits.
Changes in the financial system would of course mean that the all linked groups would be affected. Players were the other big group in NBA and believe that they are the sole driving force behind record TV ratings, revenues, franchise and merchandise. These are the fundamental sources of income for a club, therefore Players wanted better contracts instead of cuts.
Both sides have been negotiating over the issue for the past two years, however they have failed to reach on an agreement. NBA commissioner, David Stern has now asked both sides to create and agree upon a contract in the next couple of days.
Stern told media in his press conference that if Owners and Players have not agreed upon a contract, he will be forced to cancel the first two weeks of regular season. If Stern remains true to his word after two weeks; Owners will lose humongous sums of money while players will lose their salaries and sponsorship deals. On the other hand, NBA will start losing its fan base.
Stern was adamant about bringing the change, he said, “There is an extraordinary hit coming to the owners and to the players.”
Stern stated that the owners had two concerns; minimizing losses and establishing a system where all teams could compete as equals. Although, NBA’s small clubs are not as wealthy as Super Bowl champions, e.g. Indianapolis Colts and Green Bay Packers but the sides are still divided over the revenue split and the cap system.
Owners and Players wouldn’t be the only ones affected by the shutdown. There are many businesses that are dependent on NBA striving. They usually operate when fans start flocking to games.
Detroit Pistons guard, Ben Gordon successfully summed up the end conclusion of the whole dilemma in his press release saying, “I haven't talked to all 400-plus guys, but the guys that I have talked to are all on the same page. While it would be devastating for fans and everything like that, right now, we're dealing with some serious business. One thing (union president Derek Fisher of the Lakers) said is we have to stand for something. It's not only today we're playing for -- it's also tomorrow, for the guys who aren't in the league yet.”