Thursday, July 14, 2011

Lockout Professionals?

It’s a tale of two lockouts in the world of North American pro sports right now.

In the NFL, the season is fast-approaching as the work stoppage nears its 130th day, but there are rumblings that it may all be over soon. Not so in the NBA though, where players are being encouraged to find somewhere else to play to show the owners what’s up!

Lets start with football: ESPN reports that Tom Brady, Peyton Manning and Drew Brees are calling for the end of the lockout, but after another marathon session, the two sides aren’t ready to come together just yet.

There is a lot of talk that July 21st might be a big day in the CBA battle, but there are also rumors that the players still don’t feel like the owners are “giving” as much as they should be in negotiations. Another thing that could potentially slow things down is the legal action being taken by former players who feel they’ve been left out of the whole process. Could that affect a potential deal reached by the players and the owners? I suppose we’ll find out on August 8th when a judge hears the case!

The bottom line is, training camp is supposed to open up soon and the preseason is supposed to start in early August, so a CBA needs to be reached in short order or else both sides will start to lose money. The heat will really be turned up in the next couple of weeks here as, for the first time, the lockout actually threatens the upcoming season. Will a deal get done in time? I’m going to say probably.

Over in the NBA, things aren’t looking good at the moment either.

Union head Billy Hunter sent a memo out on Tuesday to let the players know that he supports those who are looking to play elsewhere for the moment. Hunter says this work stoppage “is intended to economically pressure our players to agree to an unfavorable [CBA],” and that finding another league to play in is basically a good way to stick it to the owners.

When the union boss is talking like that, it’s probably a good sign that negotiations aren’t going well.

While some players have already committed to playing abroad, it seems others have found different ways to keep themselves busy during the lockout. Check out this hilarious sketch from Wednesday night’s ESPYs:

“I love filing papers so much that I might change my name to ‘I Love Filing Papers So Much,’ right kids?” (Right, Metta World Dad!)

Only $9,000,000.99 for help with those odd jobs around the house? Sounds like a deal to me!

But seriously, I think there’s a good chance that the NBA lockout cuts into at least part of the upcoming season. The players and owners are so far apart at this point and they don’t even seem to be talking seriously yet. Blake, Kevin and Metta might need to do some odd jobs after all come October!

What do you think: Which will have a bigger impact on the coming season – the NBA or the NFL lockout?

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