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Locals comment as lockout reaches NBA

The National Basketball Association lockout became official by Commissioner David Stern as of 11 p.m. Thursday night, after an immediate financial disagreement.

National Football League lockout has lasted approximately four months prior with the same dispute.

 “The goal here has been to make the league profitable,” said Stern in a previous article, “and to have a league where all 30 teams can compete.”

Twenty-two of 30 teams lost money. New York Knicks are making a huge profit of $64 million and the Orlando Magic is suffering at -$23 million. The NBA title was won by the Dallas Mavericks and their franchise is under $7.5 million.

Yao Ming of the Houston Rockets is the tallest player in the NBA at 7 ft. 6 in. and was paid $17 million for only playing six games last season due to an injury.

Owners and players are feuding mainly over salaries and the salary cap.

Owners want to drop the salary guarantee from 57 to 54.3 percent, giving a cut of $500 million over the next five years and the players want to raise the average salary $7 million for the sixth year.

Statistics, photos, and videos have been removed from the NBA website. Basketball on NBATV consists only of the Women’s NBA and slam dunk contests from the mid-1900s.

“Owners and players make millions of dollars,” said Steve Forsythe, head coach of the McNairy Central Bobcats, “and it’s hard for me to understand how either side needs to make more.”

“I recently attended an Atlanta Braves baseball game and it occurred to me that it’s not the players and owners who get hurt by these things but all the little guys who make their living at the stadiums.”

“The vendors, gate workers, security, cleanup workers, and sports reporters all make a living off these guys and they will be the ones who can't afford to miss a paycheck.”

A large majority of the players received a paycheck by the end of April. The players do not have a financial concern at this time.

Tennessee will be disappointed to miss the Memphis Grizzlies after a successful season. The franchise ranked No. 9 in ESPN The Magazine’s Ultimate Standings out of all the major professional teams in North American, including the MLB, NFL, NHL, and NBA. They also took the No. 1 position in the “bang for the buck” category. 

The gap between the players and owners estimated earnings are too far apart for an agreement to occur soon.

Some players are considering playing in Europe especially if the lockout drags on. 

New head coach Nathaniel Root of the Adamsville Cardinals has friends that he has met and play in the NBA.

“I feel sorry for the guys that are not signed under guaranteed contracts,” said Root. “They don’t know what they are doing next year. They have the opportunity to go overseas, but there is no guarantee.”

“It’s selfish to lockout and not give anyone else the opportunity to make a living.” 

The last NBA lockout in 1999 left only 50 games to the season. This particular lockout has been anticipated for about two years now and games will not be called this soon.

In previous lockouts two leagues coincided in 1994.The postseason and World Series was cancelled due to an eight month long debate by Major League Baseball. The National Hockey League went on strike in the same year for three and a half months that cut the season in half with 48 out of 84 games.

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