A dollar short and a day late. More like a few million short and over three months too late. That’s my response to the news of the NBA seeking a mediator to listen to arguments from the players and owners. Let’s not forget the NFL tried the same approach, with the same mediator and got no results. Mind you the NFL called in George Cohen, director of Federal Mediation, very early in the process.
So how is this NBA Hail Mary going to fly? Well…it won’t.
The union misplayed its hand in assuming the owners would fight fare. The owners mucked their cards by thinking they could bluff the players into folding.
Now here we sit – all losers.
The owners and players are losing money while the fans are losing interest. Overall this is a labor mess with the makings of long-term trouble.
While getting an experienced mediator such as Cohen into the mix makes sense it, like all things in this lockout, has come far too late. With such a wide gab between both sides about all Cohen can do is play counselor. His services aren’t likely to get a new CBA proposal on the table. Instead about all he can do is to keep Dwyane Wade from flipping the negotiating table over on David Stern.
Ultimately you’d like to believe that with the stakes as high as ever that a deal will be forced into the works. Again, if we’ve gone this far with no progress then I’m thinking a new approach won’t be the key.
In the face of all the negativity there is at least the smiling optimism of both sides sitting down inside of a week’s time since Stern took a blade to the schedule. So there is some hope. Albeit about as much hope as the T-Wolves have of being respectable. But hope none the less.