After a meeting with 29 of its 30 team representatives, leadership of the players union have rejected the owners' offer, with Derek Fisher saying that while they are willing to continue talking "Our orders are clear that the current offer on the table is not acceptable...." said the union president.
David Stern had given the players an ultimatum on Friday that if they don't accept the owners' offer of a 50-50 BRI split by 5 p.m. Wednesday, the owners will pull back from their current proposal and start over from 47-53. In their comments, both Fisher and Billy Hunter indicated "system" issues are a bigger deal than the BRI split. It was the first time the union signaled it might accept a 50-50 split.
Hunter said players will reach out to Stern tonight or tomorrow morning to ask to meet again but noted it's been rumored the NBA will cancel games through Christmas if there's no deal by 5 p.m. Wednesday. Stern denied that and said he would take Hunter's call but wouldn't commit to new talks, adding there is no "wiggle room". Fisher said no vote was taken on current deal but that the union feels the "vast majority" support their stand. He said there was "very little talk of decertification" among the player reps.
Meanwhile, Marc Stein said Hunter told the players that a slim majority of owners would ratify the current offer...and Ken Berger says he was apparently wrong about Mikhail Prokhorov being a hardliner.
- N.B.A. Players Signal a Shift That Could End the Lockout - Howard Beck - New York Times
N.B.A. Commissioner David Stern Is No Longer ‘Easy Dave’ - Harvey Araton - New York Times
- NBA lockout -- Players reject David Stern's 'ultimatum' offer - Brian Mahoney - AP
NBA players reject offer, hope to resume talks - Adrian Wojnarowski - Yahoo! Sports
Despite the risks, NBA's hard-line owners not backing down - Ken Berger - CBS Sports
- Hunter: League could cancel Christmas games Thurs - Matt Moore - CBS Sports
Players unwilling to accept deal, want a meeting - Royce Young - CBS Sports
- NBA lockout -- Players reject David Stern's 'ultimatum' offer, want further talks - Henry Abbott - ESPN
NBA union wants one more round of talks with owners - Chris Sheridan - Sheridan Hoops
- NBPA Rejects Offer (Video) - David Aldridge - NBA.com
- Union, 30 player representatives, rejects NBA's current proposal - Kate Fagan - Philadelphia Inquirer
NBA lockout: Rhetoric escalates as deadline looms - Amy Shipley - Washington Post