Archive for the ‘Lockout Watch’ Category

WOOOOOOOOOO-HOOOOOOOOOO!

The lockout’s over, y’all! Pop bottles! Get krizzled! I just made that last word up! Behold:

“We’ve reached a tentative understanding that is subject to a variety of approvals and very complex machinations, but we’re optimistic that will all come to pass and that the NBA season will begin Dec. 25,” Commissioner David Stern said.

The article goes on to point out that the deal still must be ratified by both owners and players. I’m not entirely sure what “ratified” means but I’m guessing it refers to “celebrating harder than you ever have before.”

What does NBA basketball coming back mean to you? I’ll tell you one thing, six guys are jumping up and down on their beds and giggling in a Miami hotel room right now.

We’re just trying to get the word out any way we can. The United Colors of Benetton know what I’m talking about.

International policies regarding socialist dictatorships, pro sports labor negotiations — same diff.

I don’t want to editorialize too much about this odd decision by the NBA Players Association to stage this jokey home page on their website making light of the strong likelihood that we won’t have an NBA season, but you can see my somewhat less diplomatic reactions on Twitter if that kind of thing interests you. Mostly, I’m interested to know if the diehard NBA fans that enjoy a good laugh and make up The Basketball Jones audience can see the humor in this sort of frivolity. Too soon?

(It’s entirely possible their website was hacked. For their sake, I hope it was. Yeesh.)

 

“The 2011-12 season is now in jeopardy.”David Stern

“The chances of losing the entire 2011-12 season has suddenly become the likelihood.”Adrian Wojnarowski

“Awwww, farts.” — all of us

Just like we expected, before that wave of optimism at the end of the week, David Stern canceled the final two weeks of the November schedule. That means no basketball until December and that means lots of missed games for every team in the league.

What follows is a breakdown of how many games each team is missing, plus the big matchups we’re being deprived of. Thanks a lot.

Atlanta Hawks — 13 (vs BOS, @ CHI, @ ORL, vs DAL, @ MIA)
Boston Celtics — 14 (@ ATL, @ MIA, @ ORL – vaunted FLA back to back)
Charlotte Bobcats — 15 (@ ORL, @ BOS, vs OKC, vs ORL)
Chicago Bulls — 15 (@ DAL, VS ATL, vs LAC, vs OKC, @ LAC, vs SA)
Cleveland Cavaliers — 14 (@ BOS, vs LAC, vs BOS, vs MIA, @ SA, @ DAL)
Dallas Mavericks — 16 (vs CHI, @ SA, vs OKC)
Denver Nuggets — 13 (@ LAL, vs NY, @ OKC, @LAC, vs CHI, vs DAL)
Detroit Pistons — 15 (@ LAL, vs BOS)
Golden State Warriors — 17 (vs LAL, vs SA, @ DAL, @ BOS, vs OKC)
Houston Rockets — 13 (vs LAC, vs DAL, vs SA)
Indiana Pacers — 17 (@ OKC, vs BOS, vs ORL, vs CHI)
Los Angeles Clippers — 16 (@ CHI, @ BOS, @ SA, vs CHI, vs OKC)
Los Angeles Lakers — 14 (vs OKC, vs SA, @ OKC)
Memphis Grizzlies — 14 (@ LAC, @ DAL, vs DAL, vs LAL, @ OKC, @ MIA)
Miami Heat — 13 (vs ORL, vs BOS, @ ORL)
Milwaukee Bucks — 14 (@ SA, vs BOS, vs CHI)
Minnesota Timberwolves — 15 (vs SA, @ LAL)
New Jersey Nets — 15 (vs DAL, @ MIA, @ OKC, vs SA)
New Orleans Hornets — 14 (vs CHI, @ LAL, vs MIA, @ SA, @ LAC)
New York Knicks — 15 (vs MIA, vs OKC, @ LAL, @ PHO, vs ORL)
Oklahoma City Thunder — 16 (miss four games in five nights to start season including @ LAL, @ DAL, plus @ CHI, @ SA, vs LAL, vs MEM, @ LAC over the following 25 days)
Orlando Magic — 15 (@ MIA, vs ATL, vs BOS, @ SA, VS MIA)
Philadelphia 76ers — 15 (@ ORL, @ LAC, @ MIA, @ DAL)
Phoenix Suns — 15 (vs OKC, vs LAL, vs POR, vs CHI, vs NY, vs LAC, @ DAL)
Portland Trail Blazers — 15 (@ LAC, @ PHO, vs SA, vs CHI, @ DAL)
Sacramento Kings — 16 (vs LAL, @ CHI, @ DAL, @ SA, @ LAL)
San Antonio Spurs — 15 (vs DAL, @ LAL, vs LAC, vs OKC, @ CHI)
Toronto Raptors — 14 (vs DAL, vs LAC, @ OKC, @ BOS, @ MIA, @ ORL, vs BOS)
Utah Jazz — 15 (@ MIA, @ ORL – vaunted FLA back to back – vs LAC, @ OKC, vs CHI)
Washington Wizards — 14 (vs ORL, @ MIA, @ ORL, vs CHI, @ LAL, vs BOS)

Deep down inside, I think we’re all Mark Cuban. On the outside — where the football jersey t-shirts, enormous stacks of money and championship rings are — not so much. But it’s the inside that counts, so let’s go for that.

International version after the jump.

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It’s hard to not feel optimistic about the NBA season starting relatively soon. Sure, there’s still a whole bunch of stuff to iron out, but last night’s negotiating session ended with David Stern and Billy Hunter joking with each other during press conferences and the suggestion that a deal is “within striking distance.” That sounds pretty, pretty, pretty good.

Plus, there’s a bunch of signs that things are getting close to wrapping up. For instance, this little tiddlybit from Harvey Beck at the New York Times:

League officials, anticipating a resolution, are quietly preparing for an 82-game season. The N.B.A. has begun calling arenas across the league, asking them to keep dates open in late April, according to arena officials.

And this nug from Jeff Zilgitt of USA Today:

According to people w/such knowledge, NBA teams making minor personnel moves: hiring video coordinators, looking at hiring scouts.

And this delicious morsel from Adrian Wojnarowski at Yahoo! Sports:

Signs of labor optimism: Team execs cancelling scouting trips, preparing for free agency. Agents quietly reaching out to teams on players.

And this sign I saw by the side of the road:

Looking good, guys. Getting kind of excited.