Now that both sides got to see who would be the Chief and who would be the Indian, we are now at Day 138 of the dreaded NBA Lockout and the players have made sure to stress, “This is a lockout. We are not on strike”. Be that as it may, the fans, the players, the owners – and at a very bad cost – the lower paid concession workers and security workers will be the ones that lose out if this season is, indeed, officially cancelled.
The Players Union headed by Executive Director Billy Hunter decided to disclaim, as opposed to decertify, interest in the union, which would take, at best, two months to even see a judge in an anti-trust lawsuit. That would all but cancel out the 2011-2012 season and that would not be a good thing to say the least.
There are certain franchises that probably will not survive the cost of a lost season: Sacramento, Memphis, New Orleans and Indiana, just to name a few. No matter what their owners may say or think. The court (pardon the pun) of public opinion will be so negative about a cancelled season that it will probably take a decade for the NBA as a whole to recover from a season-long lockout. It took nearly five years from the 1999 Lockout for the NBA to really get back into the good graces of sponsors and the public-at-large. And the fact remains that for as many as 10 teams will severely suffer from the lack of fan support; the tickets will all be free.
The New Jersey Nets, for one, was giving tickets away online for a buck for certain games. One dollar was all it took to go see certain teams when they came to visit the Nets in New Jersey. Sure, the method may have been making some of it up in parking and concessions, but that wasn’t a certainty.
Cooler heads, at some point, need to prevail in order to save what was a great 2010-2011 season and do what’s good for all involved.