According to the National Basketball Player’s Union, the league’s larger market owners are ready to sign a new CBA and end the NBA lockout. Los Angeles Lakers’ owner Jerry Buss, New York Knicks’ owner James Dolan, Dallas Mavericks’ Mark Cuban and Miami Heat’s owner Mickey Arison are willing to ink a deal with players according to union Chief Billy Hunter.
Billy Hunter: “They want a deal” [referring to the large market owners]. A group of owners from small markets are dug in, and they are carrying the day. The guys who are anxious to cut a deal don’t have the votes.”
The one name that was mentioned most during the press conference was the Cleveland Cavaliers’ owner Dan Gilbert. Gilbert’s Cavaliers are the poster-child of small market teams that cannot compete in the NBA due to the ‘lack of competitiveness balance.’ Owners like Gilbert believe they are unable to challenge squads like the Lakers and Knicks because they don’t have the money or resources to sign star players.
Are you the Ultimate Kobe Bryant Fan? Prove It & Win with our Kobe Quiz
Jerry Buss, on the other hand, wants to end this lockout as much as the players do. Buss knows the ramifications of cancelling more NBA games, and he has the future of the league in his mind. Buss is willing to compromise with the union and is itching to add another Larry O’Brien trophy to his closet. However, if Dan Gilbert and other like-minded owners continue to control things, that may not happen for a while.