October 20, 2020

NBA talks break down over money, games in jeopardy

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NEW YORK (AP) — Unable to reach a deal, NBA owners and players walked away from the table and don’t know when they will meet again.

If it’s not in the next few days, they can forget about playing 82 games.

Without an agreement by Monday, the beginning of the regular season will be canceled, and both sides will lose millions of dollars and perhaps countless fans.

“We’re ready to meet and discuss any subject anyone wants to talk about,” Commissioner David Stern said. “We’d like not to lose the first two weeks of the season, but it doesn’t look good.”

Though the financial gap closed slightly, once the players’ association said it wouldn’t entertain the idea of a 50-50 revenue split, the league canceled the remainder of the preseason Tuesday and will wipe out the first two weeks of the regular season if there is no labor agreement by Monday.

“We were not able to make the progress that we hoped we could make and we were not able to continue the negotiations,” Stern said after nearly four hours of talks between owners and players ended without gaining ground on a new deal.

No further meetings are scheduled — union executive director Billy Hunter said it could be a month or two until the next one — making it even more likely the league will lose games to a work stoppage for the first time since 1998-99, when the season was reduced to 50 games.

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