Charles Barkley believes that there is a tough road ahead for players in the NBA lockout
NBA legend and current TV analyst Charles Barkley has warned that players would find it increasingly tough from here on in because of the NBA lockout. The former Philadelphia 76ers star said he was concerned about players because
the NBA lockout was now starting to hit them where it hurts the most; their pockets.
“See that’s what everybody doesn’t understand about pro sports. Those guys, they just missed their first pay check. They haven’t gotten paid since April because you only get paid during the season. So most of these guys haven’t
gotten paid since April. Before they weren’t missing checks, but now you’re starting to be missing checks, and it’s going to get real serious right now. I mean, it’s going to get real serious right now. It’s got to be a little scary for some of these players.”
He told Sports Radio Interviews.
The NBA lockout began on July 1st after the expiry of the old Collective Bargaining Agreement. The labour dispute has since lingered on as players and owners fail to find common ground over a deal for a new CBA.
Negotiations have been exhaustive and often it seemed as if a breakthrough was within striking distance, but time and time again talks have collapsed at the last moment. Even a federal mediator couldn’t resolve the differences
both sides have over various issues.
The owners haven’t move an inch from their stance throughout the lockout, while the players have made many concessions. It seems as if now the owners want to break down players’ resistance completely and are willing to wipe out
the complete season in order to achieve that.
The players have shown some solidarity so far, but now it will get tough for them, according to Charles Barkley. Sir Charles believes that since games have been cancelled and NBA players missed their first pay checks, there is
going to be increased disillusionment within the players because of increased financial complications, and that could prove to be very testing indeed.
Barkley also said that this could lead to disputes within the players and more and more will now start taking different sides, a process he believes has already began.
“I think the splintering has happened already. I think that’s one of the reasons they didn’t put the last proposal up for a player vote.” Barkley explained.
The National Basketball Players Association was given a take it or leave it offer by NBA Commissioner David Stern earlier this month, who also refused to negotiate any further with the union. Stern and the owners wanted their proposal
put to a vote, but the union rejected it outright without going to the players.
The union has disbanded and players filed class action lawsuits against owners.