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Prokhorov: "We Didn't Make Big Mistakes" on Player Salaries

In an interview with a Russian newspaper, Mikhail Prokhorov says his biggest impressions of the NBA after almost one year as an owner are how "super competitive" it is and how a single mistake can hang around for five or six years.

Competition was "much sharper than it seemed, when I entered. Super competitive league with severe rules, perhaps the most severe in all of sports," he said according to machine translations. "One unique error throws you off for 5-6 years. Here, for example, in football, if  you have bought an expensive player, and he does not play. It is possible to plant him on a bench for 5 years, give him money and release him"

Not so In the NBA, he explained noting that even if you release a player, he stays on the cap.  And although it might have sounded like he was talking about Travis Outlaw, Prokhorov added, "We, fortunately, have not made (such) errors."

As for the collective bargaining negotiations, Prokhorov said "In the NBA, a team is a business, but many are losing money. Because of this, incidentally, the situation is quite severe. I have no right to comment on it, but negotiations to extend the agreement are not easy. By law of the NBA, only the commissioner may comment on the negotiations . Owners have no right to a comment.  If not, (we'll) be fined immediately."