If Steve Jobs taught us anything, it’s that one spark of the imagination can alter the course of reality.
Unfortunately, there are no Steve Jobs’ available to the NBA.
I guess you can say the lack of a Jobs has created a lack of jobs.
After meeting for what seems to be the 100th time, eclipsing their 1,000th consecutive hour of negotiations, the NBA and the players’ union are basically inept in coming to some form of agreement.
That means millions of fans are left without the game that they love. It also means that thousands of NBA employees are left without work, and that’s not including the few hundred players who will be missing out on the hefty paychecks that they’ve become accustomed to receiving.
My sympathy certainly does not lie with them.
My sympathy lies with the people from guest services, the concessions stands, the trainers, even the little boy whose dream it is to be a ball boy.
My sympathy also doesn’t lie with the multimillionaire owners who for some odd reason think they deserve more money than they are currently earning.
Regardless if whether their team is losing money or not, you were rich before you acquired your largest investment. Greed is at the base of their argument, not that they’re in any danger of going broke.
Get out of here.
However, I do empathize with the NBA and players’ association as a whole.
Go on, ask me why…
Because as a whole, they are completely devoid of any semblance of an innovative mind.
You see, there are three options to choose from when a company runs into a work stoppage: the employees get what they want, the bosses get what they want, or someone thinks of the unthinkable.
A perfect example is the most recent NFL lockout, in which the players lost badly.
But in the players’ eyes, it was better to play having lost than to sit and possibly win, but probably still lose.
In the case of the NBA lockout, there are two major factors that are separating the two parties: the revenue split and the salary-cap system.
The owners want a 50-50 revenue split. The players want 52.5 percent of revenue.
They can’t agree.
The owners want a hard salary-cap system, but are willing to ease up on that demand if they get a 50-50 revenue split.
The players will not allow a hard salary-cap or a 50-50 split, therefore, they can’t agree.
So what’s left?
They brought in the same mediator that assisted with the NFL lockout, but he was unable to resolve the problem because no party was willing to lose.
So again, what’s left?
Remember that thought about the unthinkable?
That’s all that is left. Someone has to come up with the unthinkable. Someone has to develop a new idea that changes the way the league and the players think.
Their current way of thinking has led them to a dead-end with apparently irreconcilable differences.
I will commend the players for thinking somewhat outside of the box. Going to play overseas and this recent worldwide tour, set to include some of the league’s brightest stars, is a unique way to put pressure on the owners.
The problem is outside the country isn’t the ‘outside the box’ thinking needed to appease loyal fans inside the US.
Deserting your fans isn’t the way to solve the lockout.
There are several basic options that the league has, yet are afraid to act upon, the most obvious being contraction.
Yes, contraction. Abolishing franchises that can’t seem to have success.
In the real world, because the NBA has to be a fantasy world where millionaires argue over extra millions, when a business isn’t turning a profit, they shut down.
That’s right; you go buy one of those ‘Going out of business’ banners, tell your employees that you’re sorry and to start looking elsewhere, and you sell everything in your possession for $5.50 plus tax.
Why any different with the NBA?
What’s funny to me is that the richest franchises, the Knicks, Lakers, Mavericks, and a few others, their owners just want this thing settled. They’re making their money.
They want their business to stay open.
Why should their business suffer because the other franchises suffer?
Sure, they have more money and can afford better players, but in what sect of the world do the richest companies not have the most benefits? I’m clueless as to why the franchises losing money are the ones driving the lockout.
Why isn’t the NBA backing its breadwinners? Why does Starbucks have to suffer because Tony’s Coffee isn’t pushing its coffee beans?
Wait, bad analogy. I forgot that in January of this year, the average NBA team was worth $369 million, according to Forbes.
I wouldn’t say that’s suffering.
Certainly, not all teams are as rich as others, but that’s the way of the world. And if those teams have that much of a problem with it, don’t try to change the system.
Don’t hate the player, hate the game.
Owners feel that if the salary cap is hard, that they will have a better chance to land better players and even up the competition in the league, as well as earn more money.
But Golden State is the 12th most valuable franchise in the league, a team that hasn’t won in ages and has no legitimate superstars.
So these owners need to realize that a lot of it has to do with the basketball market in their city.
The least valuable franchise in the league is the Milwaukee Bucks. Among the bottom-feeders are the Minnesota Timberwolves, Sacramento Kings, and Memphis Grizzlies.
Would anyone really miss those teams if they were to close up shop?
I bet the argument that “it’s for the betterment of the league” wouldn’t fly if the NBA pushed those teams to call it quits. So why does that argument fly as far as revenue-sharing and the salary cap?
This could be the worst idea in the world, but frankly, at this point, I bet that NBA fans would regard it as the best. That’s how frustrated fans are with the incompetence of the players and the league.
Bring in Bill Gates. Bring in president Obama. Bring in someone with no bias and brain cells to spare.
It seems to me those currently involved in the fray are brainless.