On Monday, NBA commissioner David Stern issued a threatening warning to the Players Association that not accepting the owners' latest proposal would only lead to a longer stalemate and worse deal for the players. Stern set a Wednesday afternoon deadline for the players to accept, essentially saying 'do this by then, or else.'
Well, apparently the players are refusing to acquiesce to Stern's bully tactics. Derek Fisher, executive director of the NBAPA, told reporters Tuesday that after convening with representatives from 29 of the league's 30 clubs, that the union would reject Stern's proposal. The primary components of the owners' latest proposal involved a 50-50 revenue split and additional salary cap restraints. Fisher said that in order for the players to continuing compromising about the revenue sharing split, the league would have to open up negotiations about 'system issues':
"We're open-minded on potential compromises on the number, but there are things in the system that are not up for negotiation for us to have a season," Fisher said.
Tom Ziller, who's been diligently covering the lockout proceedings for SB Nation, explains what issue players and owners have yet to agree upon:
The last remaining system issues include a smaller mid-level exception for luxury tax teams, an additional penalty for teams that exceed the tax line multiple times in a short span and a ban on sign-and-trade deals for tax teams. The union feels that these mechanisms will drop players' negotiating power and constrict player movement.
Stay tuned both here and at SB Nation's comprehensive NBA Lockout Stream for news and analysis about the labor impasse as it unfolds.