NBA, NBA Players Association strike deal on reduced pay

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The pandemic soon will be affecting the take-home pay of NBA players.

Via Adrian Wojnarowski of ESPN.com, the NBA and NBA Players Association have agreed to a 25-percent reduction in player pay, as of May 15.

The withheld money will be held in escrow, in the event that the remaining 2019-20 regular-season games are played. If the remaining 2019-20 games aren’t played, teams would keep a percentage of the money.

The salary reductions will continue into the 2020-21 season, even if/when those games are played.

The deal represents a negotiated alternative to the NBA relying on the force majeure clause in the labor deal to justify not paying players at all for games that ultimately are canceled due to the pandemic. Given payments already made to players, that could result in teams trying to recover money already paid. Instead, money will be withheld moving forward, even into next season, to address the NBA’s rights under the CBA to not pay players for games that aren’t played.

This is relevant to the NFL because, as previously explained, the NFL’s labor deal and the standard player contract contain no language that would allow the league to stiff players if games aren’t played. Which gives the NFLPA much more leverage than the NBPA when it comes to figuring out what needs to happen if the games can’t.

Which ultimately is all the more reason for the NFL to do whatever it has to do to play its games in 2020.

But if the playing of NFL games requires a material change to normal working conditions, the NFLPA will have a large and potent hammer in any negotiations that may transpire. If, as it appears, NFL players would be entitled to full pay if no games are played at all, the NFLPA can balk at any alternative arrangements that place an unreasonable burden on the players.

That said, the NFLPA needs to realize that forcing the NFL to pay the players in full for games that aren’t played could have dramatic long-term consequences to the league and the union, forcing multiple owners to take out significant loans and/or to sell all or part of their equity during a time that hardly could be viewed as a seller’s market, introducing the potential for chaos into the sport and, in turn, into the relationship between management and labor.

22 responses to “NBA, NBA Players Association strike deal on reduced pay

  1. Sorry, but billionaires don’t have money problems.

    Whatever financial stress their NFL toy creates will be more than offset by their gains in buying up distressed assets from desperate regular guys like the rest of us.

    I’m not making an equality an argument, just pointing out that we don’t need to lose any sleep worrying about these guys.

  2. Anyone miss the NBA or Hollywood celebrities?…….

    I miss any competitive sport at this point.

  3. The billionaires could pay every player, every coach, member of their office staffs, stadium workers and security and still have vast fortunes and not blink an eye.

  4. I ain’t crying a single tear for mega-billionaires that actually have to pay their workers because of a collective bargaining contract THAT THEY SIGNED. What stinks is now these mega-billionaires will use the pandemic as an excuse to further financially fleece taxpayers for even more outlandish stadiums.

  5. NFL preseason games are better watches than the NBA regular season. The NFL will go forward if it’s at all plausible. As for the NBA…..guys like John Wall have made 80 million to basically not play for 2 seasons. It’s hardly a sport at all when guys get guaranteed money and don’t have to work for it-

  6. Yea …. I’m going to lose sleep over NFL owners losing money. They have jacked my ticket prices through the roof and I pay $8 for a twelve ounce beer at a place that I can’t bring alcohol into. They can sign players and then cut them whenever they want. NFL owners grab my taxpayer dollars to build their stadiums and expect me to be grateful.
    I won’t be shedding any tears for them.

  7. I do not envision any of these owners eating ramen if the season is canceled

  8. maximusintoxicus says:
    April 18, 2020 at 12:45 pm
    Yea …. I’m going to lose sleep over NFL owners losing money. They have jacked my ticket prices through the roof and I pay $8 for a twelve ounce beer at a place that I can’t bring alcohol into.
    ————–
    If it is so bad, then why do YOU go?…..

  9. “I do not envision any of these owners eating ramen if the season is canceled”

    Hey, Nissan ramen is delicious. Well, the beef flavor is, not so much the chicken or the shrimp. All that salty goodness for like 69 cents a serving. Just don’t eat the “meat” particles, and ramen is a tasty snack. (This is not sarcasm).

  10. Does the NCAA have to pay their players for the cancelled games? Seems like they should if all the other pro sports have to pay.

  11. NBA Playoffs would’ve started this weekend. I wonder if Memphis or New Orleans would’ve gotten the 8th seed. *sighs*

  12. Does the NCAA have to pay their players for the cancelled games? Seems like they should if all the other pro sports have to pay.

    Drugs are great. Especially whatever you might be on

  13. Love all the wealth envy. None of these sports are even possible without them

  14. This is relevant to the NFL because, as previously explained, the NFL’s labor deal and the standard player contract contain no language that would allow the league to stiff players if games aren’t played.
    ~~~~~~
    The previous article did not explain this point very well. I would think there is also no language in the CBA or SPC that says players will be paid even if there are no games played. That said, what happened to the “we are partners” the union uses whenever they try to justify a higher percentage of revenue? That leads to another point. The players’ salaries are based on the players getting a percentage of revenue that is broken down via the 32 team salary cap. If there is less revenue there would logically be less pay but some the operating cost is taken off the top before the revenue split. I think the fight would be much harder than Mike believes. Regardless, both sides need to work together to address a solution because a battle over this will be nasty for both sides.

  15. Anyone miss the NBA or Hollywood celebrities?…….

    NBA would be starting to get interesting about now, so yes.

  16. Millionaires and Billionaires worried about their cash while 30 million people are unemployed.

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