DAVID STERN: The Owners And Players Are 'Very Far Apart On Virtually All Issues'

John Wall David Stern NBA Washington Wizards

Photo: Washington Post

The NBA’s lockout finally hit a tipping point last night when the first two weeks of the season were canceled and David Stern said the two sides are “very far apart on virtually all issues.”Among those issues are four that appear to be the biggest sticking points.

Basketball Related Income

In the previous CBA, players enjoyed 57 per cent of Basketball Related Income (BRI). The players are willing to accept a reduction to 53 per cent. But after briefly proposing a 50-50 split, the owners are now only offering 47 per cent. Last year, the NBA revenue totaled $3.8 billion, with approximately $2.18 billion going to the players. The owners’ proposal would reduce the players’ take to approximately $1.79 billion with the players willing to accept $2.01 billion. The difference between the two sides will be even larger in future seasons as the NBA negotiates new television deals and BRI goes up.

Salary Cap

David Stern says the owners have backed-off their insistence of a hard salary cap. But at the same time, the owners want to install a luxury-tax system that the players view as a de facto hard salary cap. The tax would be $2 for every $1 a team goes over the threshold. That is twice the luxury tax rate in the previous CBA. The rate would also go up to $3 for every $1 if a team surpasses the threshold three times in five seasons and $4 if a team goes above the limit five straight years.

Contract Lengths

The owners want contract lengths for free agents limited to either three years (for players signing with new teams) or four years (for player re-signing with their previous team). The players want those contracts to be four and five years in length, respectively.

The Larry Bird Exception

The owners want the Larry Bird Exception, which allows teams to exceed the salary cap to re-sign their own players, to be limited to a single player on each team at any given time.

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