CBA Rumors

The league made so much money last season — and that’s (ital.)before(endital) the new TV money kicks in — it had to write the players a check for more than $57 million, which the players then split amongst themselves. That was what the league owed the players after giving them their 50 percent of BRI for last season. The players can receive up to 51 percent of BRI in a given year if revenues exceed projections. When that happened last season, the league was on the hook for that $57 million. And 1/30th of the shortfall paid to the players is also added to the following season’s salary cap, which is why there was an 11th-hour bump of almost $2 million to next season’s salary cap, raising it to $70 million. In addition, the players got back all of the escrow — 10 percent of their combined salaries — that they give annually to the owners in case revenues are less than expected. The huge increases in revenues came from spikes in the gate (around $100 million more in ticket sales than in 2013-14, according to a source), local television rights deals ($70 million more) and national TV increases ($20 million). The gate spikes were led by the Cavaliers, with James back in Cleveland, and the Hawks, whose surge to the top of the Eastern Conference standings led to a record number of Philips Arena sellouts.
The players can opt out of the current 10-year pact in 2017, but the NBPA would rather have a new collective bargaining agreement in place before opting out. Roberts told the Globe in June that the sides would begin negotiating in August. “Since the day Michele took the job, we’ve been talking on a regular basis,” commissioner Adam Silver told the Globe. “I think we’ve both been clear that our jobs are to bring stability to the league and to continue and build on the success we’ve had. We’re looking forward to engaging with the union. We have a labor relations committee formed. She has her executive committee. We hope to get together this fall and continue the discussions we’ve been having on a staff level.”
This rumor is part of a storyline: 4 more rumors
The league and the union have not held a formal bargaining session, per sources on both sides, though they are working to schedule one soon. Both sides have flip-flopped between apocalyptic rhetoric and nicey-nice talk, and we should always assume all public comments are negotiating tactics designed to nudge the scales of leverage. Perhaps Roberts recognizes the players are munching half of an ever-growing revenue pie and don’t have the resources to outlast hawkish owners who might want to hog more than half of that pie. Roberts may be pressuring Silver to massage those hawks so the money train can roll on.
This rumor is part of a storyline: 4 more rumors