The 2011-2012 NBA season continues its downward spiral as it reaches its fourth month in the lockout. NBA commissioner, David Stern, recently cancelled the first two weeks of the regular season (November 1-14), which unfortunately may become the trend for many weeks to follow.
The lockout’s biggest obstacle? How to split $4 billion in basketball related income. That is, concession sales, parking, broadcast, etc. Owners want player revenue down 10% from last year’s agreement of 57%. Players are willing to reduce their share to 53%, a substantial cut as 1% of basketball related income is estimated to be worth about $40 million, but it just isn’t enough.
Players have been warned to prepare financially for a lost season, as they are expected to lose more than $350 million for every month lost. It may be hard for fans to “boo-hoo” over these multi-millionaire victims but it’s difficult to imagine losing a paycheck worth a weighty amount every two weeks. Here is a list of the NBA’s top 10 “Biggest Losers”:
10. Joe Johnson of the Hawks: $1,387,582.54
9. Amare Stoudemire of the Knicks: $1,401,361.92
8. Carmelo Anthony of the Knicks: $1,423,076.92
7. Pau Gasol of the Lakers: $1,439,550
6. Dirk Nowitzki of the Mavericks: $1,468,682.54
5. Gilbert Arenas of Magic: $1,482,254.46
4. Kevin Garnett of the Celtics: $1,630,769.23
3. Tim Duncan of the Spurs: $1,638,461.54
2. Rashard Lewis of the Wizards: $1,704,000.00
1. Kobe Bryant of the Lakers: $1,941,846.15
It’s going to take a lot more than sobbing sorrows through social media for players to regain trust and devotion from fans. A lockout like this may take years to rebuild. Mainly because the people who are getting hit the hardest are those who don’t play basketball at all. NBA staffers, arena employees and those who don’t play the sport but rely on it to live are in fact the “biggest losers.”