November 2, 2011

We’ve officially missed NBA games

by Dan Bilicki In: Basketball

In case you didn’t notice, the NBA was supposed to start their regular season last night, but, as far as I know, the two sides arguing in this labour war weren’t even negotiating.

Thanks to this bickering over a percentage point or two (OK, I realize that could mean about $125 million going one way or the other), we missed out on the Dallas Mavericks raising their championship banner and handing out the most gaudy championship jewelry sports has ever seen. We missed out on what likely would be the final season as an apex predator that Kobe Bryant will have. And he would be facing one of the best two-headed scoring monsters around in Kevin Durant and Russell Westbrook.

And we missed the snore-fest that would have been Houston-Utah.

Instead, we had footage of Durant playing flag football, rumours of a French team gunning for Joakim Noah and not a single update in negotiations.

The road that we’re currently on is only going to get darker. The longer these two sides fail to compromise on the biggest issue at hand – basketball related income – we’re going to see more and more games cancelled.

At the beginning of all of this, Grantland columnist Bill Simmons wrote an NBA source said that between the time that a deal was finished and the regular season could start, the time would likely be a month. After all, we’d still have to go through a truncated version of free agency – like the NFL had – as well as some short period of camp and probably a couple of pre-season games.

So, if you have some hope for the Association opening in time for those massive Christmas games, when casual fans usually start flocking to the NBA in time for the stretch run, you better be hoping that this deal is hammered out within a month.

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