NBA commissioner David Stern estimates that players will lose about 170 million every two weeks. NBA players association executive director Billy Hunter believes the owners will suffer a similar financial fate and then some.
Forget about whether the NBA should contract?
The financial losses suffered during the lockout might leave the NBA no choice but to shut down some franchises.
That's what they gotta think about," Hunter told reporters at a Beverly Hills, Calif. hotel after meeting with players for more than three hours to update them on where things stood with the lockout. "They (owners) gotta think about in the face of a protracted lockout, there will be some franchises that won't make it. If things are as dire as he (Stern) says they are, he better be concerned about that."
Uh, you might want to add that to the list of union concerns as well.
League contraction means fewer roster spots.
That means fewer jobs, which means fewer revenue streams to tap into, which in turn, would likely lower the basketball-related income figures.
In other words, fewer teams is bad business for all involved.
But the longer this lockout lasts, the closer the league moves to making contraction an inevitable reality.
With both sides seemingly going nowhere fast, help (hopefully) is on the way in the form of George Cohen, director of the Federal Mediation and Conciliation Service.
Cohen will meet with both Stern and Hunter separately on Monday, and then collectively on Tuesday.
He met with the NFL owners and union during their lockout, although it's unclear how much his role played in both sides coming to terms on their new CBA.
Considering where the NBA and union are now, having an outside voice - an impartial one, mind you - can't hurt.