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Cold November Pain - The Downbeat - #610

I don't know how to get you more riled up about the season not starting tonight other than to say there won't be a game thread tonight. There won't be one on the third. And there won't be one on the fifth. We should be at virtual war right now with the Dream Shake and the NBA has taken that away.

So for today and tomorrow, SLC Dunk and other SB Nation basketball sites, will turn off the color scheme of their respective sites and go with black and white. It will have no power nor persuasion in regards to ending the lockout but it does a bit of expression for the fans that we haven't forgotten.

It's hard at times to express so much concern over a game and a league that would rank very low on the priority scale when you think about it. We all probably pay way too much attention to a game. There are many more things that we could do with our days and nights that would be more constructive. Yet, we need this. For many it's an escape from our daily worries and cares. It's also something that brings people together whether that be at the arena, in game threads, or simply talking to co-workers about the game the night before.

So what can we do to end the lockout? Truthfully? Nothing. This will be decided in a stuffy hotel meeting room with lawyers and players. I think boycotts can be effective except that the problem is that you can't get enough people to care.

So what do we do with no games? I'll encourage you to use game nights to do something positive in your life and in the lives of others. Get out and meet new people. Start a new hobby. Do something. Games and game threads will be back soon enough. So make the most of this time and don't let the lockout get you down.

My worry -- and it should be the NBA's worry as well -- is that you find something to do that starts taking you away from the game permanently. It's your money that they're fighting over. Never forget that.

From the New York Post we learn that next year's salary cap will likely remain at $58 million,

According to multiple sources, one of the resolved issues in a new CBA is the 2011 salary cap will remain at the level as it was in 2010 -- $58 million.

"That's what we've been discussing, though the exact dollar amount is not set until the new deal is done,'' said one league source, who added no new talks have yet been scheduled.

The Jazz sit right at $57 million in salaries for this season. They still need to sign Enes Kanter and Alec Burks plus a couple of free agents to fill out the roster. So they'll be over the salary cap, which is allowed in this circumstance, but won't be over the luxury tax.

Next season the cap is expected to go up to about $60 million. With Memo's deal coming off the books and with additional contracts, the Jazz would be right around $50 million in salaries. I suspect that they'll keep that cap room free for a while.

Lockout links,

New York Times

The letter was a response to a report by, published Saturday, that alleged that Fisher, the union's president, had attempted to cut a deal with Commissioner David Stern without the support of other union leaders. The report cited an anonymous source.

According to the story, Fisher told Stern he could get the players to approve a 50-50 split of league revenue, as proposed by the league. The union has been seeking 52.5 percent, and the executive director Billy Hunter has insisted that it will not go lower. According to the report, Hunter and an unnamed player from the union's executive committee confronted Fisher on Friday morning and persuaded him to hold firm at that figure.

(Text of Derek Fisher's letter)

NBA Lockout, And More Good News For People Who Love Bad News -
For now, the owners have kept money from TV deals, but if the season goes under? Then they have to give all that money back. Suddenly they jeopardize longstanding sponsorships, too. For now the brand's okay, but if the NBA misses the whole year? Suddenly the NBA looks like the NHL, and the casual audience goes elsewhere. And why? For an extra 2% that means a thousand times less to billionaires than it does to millionaires?

NBA Lockout Bleeds Into Regular Season, And Fans Remain The Goats -
But fairness to us, the customers, has no place in the discussion. Fairness would mean that instead of arguing over the luxury tax, owners and players would be working to boost revenue sources so loyal customers didn't have to bear a larger burden. (You can stop laughing now.) The Knicks had a winning season for the first time in a decade, and raised ticket prices 49 percent. Fairness has nothing to do with this. interviews Ron Boone,

TJ: I know you are a positive person, I've never heard you complain about this next topic. The NBA doesn't recognize ABA statistics so I argue that you're professional basketball's forgotten iron man. For example everyone made a big deal when AC Green passed Randy Smith, for the league's longest consecutive games played streak. Yet virtually no one said anything when AC passed you. Do you ever feel like you don't get enough credit for your streak?

RB: The only thing I wish they would have done was recognized it as a professional basketball record. If they didn't want to take the ABA statistics into the NBA, to me it was still a professional basketball record. I wish they would have done something like that.

If you're looking for a new tech site, a new site under the SBN unmbrella has launched called The Verge. Your username/password from SLC Dunk will work over there, so no new signup required. It's got a lot of the StoryStream tech from the SBN main site as well as some of the leading tech people in the industry.

So if you're looking do something outside of the NBA tonight, check it out. I am under the same company but I'm not being forced to promote it. I would be reading it regardless.