2011 NBA Lockout
Kelly S. Croslis – Sports
2011 has been the year of indecision, especially when it comes to sports.
There was fear earlier this year as the football season approached and the questions arouse as to if it happened, but at the last minute, everyone’s fall was saved with only a shortened preseason and the regular season intact. Just under the radar, however, was a second lock out. Basketball was next on the chopping block, and the possibility of no basketball this year is becoming a reality.
A basketball lockout is not a new scenario; it is the fourth time the NBA season has been put in jeopardy, the last being before the 1998-1999 seasons. While that season was saved, the schedule was reduced from 82 games to 50. A lockout was averted in 2005 when a new c contract was approved earlier that year. That contract was due to expire on June 30th of this year. In hopes of preventing any interruptions in the season negotiations began in early 2011. On July 1st the lockout began, and the future of the 2011 season was in doubt.
The reason behind the lockout is the league claims they are losing $300 million a year and have proposed that player salaries be reduced by 40% and Institute a salary cap of $45 million for each team. The union rejected the offer, and the league has recently accused the players of being uncooperative during negotiations. In the last few weeks negotiations have continued to break down, with the salary cap being the main source of disagreement. Some believe owners have more leverage in the negotiations, and those working with the players have suggested they find a way to take control.
With the current season in jeopardy, players are looking for other options and many are heading overseas to play, some team giving them the option of returning to the us in the event the lockout ends. To date, 70 players have signed with foreign teams.
In the eyes of fans, if the season is canceled, they will simply turn to another sport, for many that have already happened as the hockey season has begun. Since basketball, season begins during the football, hockey and end of the baseball seasons, it is easy for fans to turn to other sports for entertainment.
The question remains, what will this mean for the future of basketball?
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