Category: NBPA

Better The Devil You Know Than The One You Don’t Or Is It ?


Better The Devil You Know Than The One You Don’t Or Is It ?

Better the devil you know than the one you don’t….. they say and in many ways that might just be true. Given the fact that we’re now seeing a great deal of unrest within the NFL and quite possibly the NBA in its imminent future . I’ve got say that I’m completely surprised with the ease at which MLB is now transitioning itself from Spring Training to the commencement of its regular season on the 31st March , 2011 . I suppose we’ve all got to grateful and thankful for MLB Commissioner Bud Selig and the somewhat smooth transition for the situation ?

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Slide show for your perusal.

We’ve all seen for ourselves the unrest now taking place between the NFL and the game’s players represented by the NFLPA . And with there now being a league enforced work stoppage and the impending litigation process to take place within the US Federal Court System it has me wondering where are the current leaders of tomorrow for the respective sports that we’ve all in some ways either come to love or hate ? NBA Commissioner David Stern has been in place the NBA’ commissioner for twenty five years and having come from a legal background as a lawyer it’d be only natural to think that any successor to Stern might from within the league’s own hierarchy or a prominent lawyer from inside the beltway with known connections to Stern and quite possibly members up on Capitol Hill. That was most certainly the case with Roger Goodell when he succeeded Paul Tagliabue as NFL Commissioner. Goodell and the league NFL President and present Chief legal counsel Jeff Pash are protege`s of Tagliabue while he was commissioner of the NFL and also when he was first a practicing lawyer with the law firm Covington &Burling LLP . Tagliabue a founding partner in the firm has since returned to his old stomping ground to practice law on a somewhat limited basis with the firm.

Goodell for his part after his initial first two years in office he now seems to have hit a brick wall in his dealings with the union and in doing so he’s coming across as something of a bumbling idiot whereas his opposite number with the NFLPA , Executive Director DeMaurice Smith has been able to articulate the union's points with clear clarification leaving no one with any doubt that they’re not the culprits here but it’s the league and the owners who are trying to paint a very different picture of the stance being taken by the players. Personally I’m not about to take sides on the issue , except to say that the childlike immaturity that has been shown by those sides during the negotiations borders on being downright infantile and totally below anything I’d have expected from either party ! But that’s what tends to happen when you have a bunch of multi-millionaire players and multi-billionaire owners fighting like rabid dogs over the scraps left at the dinner table. Only the scraps isn’t in fact leftovers from a meal but how to split $ 9 billion ($ 9,000,000,000) evenly amongst the two sides . Have you ever seen or heard anything so ridiculous in all of your life ?

Now when it comes to David Stern you either love him or hate him . He’s something of a chameleon as to the way he wants to be perceived by the fans and public alike and when it comes to the photo-op whereby he can even outshine the elite players within the NBA , let’s just say that is when the commissioner is at his very best it’s very difficult to actually ignore him . Twenty five years as commissioner of the league has seen expansion , as to the number of the teams within the NBA and the gross revenues of the league as business concern. And that could not have been done without the ascension of Michael Jordan and his becoming the face of the NBA globally and still being a marketing phenomenon to this day even after his retirement almost a decade ago . The league hierarchy under Stern’s tenure has shaped the league and its brand not just domestically but also on a global scale . And it might just be next to soccer the most popular sport on the planet and that is with due respect to baseball .

From a league whose revenues could be counted in the tens of millions each year____ the NBA is now a $4.5 billion —- $6 billion ($4,500,000,000 —- $6,000,000,000) a year enterprise that is still growing globally but if anything it may well have hit its saturation point within the North American market. And it shouldn’t come as a surprise to anyone that even with introduction of the D League or Development League as it is more commonly known , David Stern has hinted that he’d some day like to see an expansion franchise outside North America , either in Europe or South America. Pardon me , for saying this but as popular as the sport may well be , and the fact that the league though headquartered in New York City , any thought of adding a franchise in either of the two regions mentioned would not only prove costly but somewhat of a gamble on the part of the NBA. Both Europe and South America already have an established presence of professional leagues and teams albeit that the players there see the NBA as their envy and a professional wish to play in the most competitive and athletic league on the planet. But the risks for them don’t outweigh the rewards whereas for the NBA that would clearly be the case in setting up a fledgling franchise anywhere around the globe. And what the NBA hierarchy may not have also taken into account is that soccer as such is very much the predominant pastime of many sport’s fans within the regions mentioned. As I alluded to earlier the risks outweigh the advantages and with there being a great deal at stake monetarily any plan put into operation would have to thought out and enacted.

We saw the death knell given to the NFL’s decade plus long experiment in Europe with NFL Europe, which is said to have cost the league in excess of $100 million and at the end of the day it simply had nothing at all tangible to show for it. Remarkably though the NBA hasn’t set its sights that high but what it has done is to have offices in Europe , the Far East , and in South America, working in conjunction with numerous partners in those regions to get the game more widely accepted and established. Is it any wonder during the Beijing Olympics Team USA was the talk and toast of the town as its litany of NBA stars were accepted by the masses and wherein audiences for their games during the tournament were in front of sold-out crowds ? Albeit that the NBA worked in conjunction with USA Basketball and the association’s director Jerry Colangelo to establish a real presence and resurrect the appeal of the team after their most recent disappointments on the international stage competitively.

Perhaps it’s too early to talk about David Stern stepping down as NBA Commissioner and though he hasn’t stated when he’s likely to step down from the position as the game’s highest ranking official. It has to be said that he hasn’t groomed an heir apparent nor has he suggested who he’d like to see succeed him in that office. I’d dare say that’d be a decision left to the owners within the league who will likely search for someone with a similar vain to succeed Stern at the time he chooses to step down. From my own perspective while I’ve admired David Stern’s business acumen I’ve got admit I do not admire his autocratic style of running the NBA . Granted , he’s made the league a great deal of money over the years but at the same time he’s made a number of mistakes that at one time or another have come back to bite the league in the proverbial ass, much to the annoyance of the fans and the journalists who cover the NBA. His adoption of a code of conduct and dress code was one of the many things he’s done right but at the same time he stooped to the lowest common denominator in trying to make the league on appearance seem ethnic in terms of marketing it to a wider demographic , particularly amongst young African American males and other ethnic minorities. It may well have been one of the biggest faux-pas on Stern’s part during his tenure. And his intransigence in not wanting to adopt a much sterner drug policy within the league while all the while trying to use the league’s selling point that at the time it had one of the sternest testing policies within all of major sports. Players weren’t being tested for marijuana , but were being tested for certain opiates, iliecit narcotics and steroids. Do I need to go any further with this ? Or is it plain to see who held the upper hand with regard to that specific issue ? It …… certainly wasn’t Stern or the owners ! The players obviously balked at that idea and may have made their feelings felt through the their union the NBPA and their Executive Director Billy Hunter

Then you also had the image policy as it related to the players’ conduct. The very fact that David Stern has been so inconsistent there as to the punishment at times meted out , that it certainly had me believing that not unlike the NCAA and its own idiotic policies as it relates to meting out what’s deemed appropriate punishment , here too the NBA picks and chooses who they necessarily want to make an example of as a deterrent to others. And perhaps another of Stern’s biggest flaw is the fact that he believes implicitly in the officials who officiate the games in the regular and NBA postseason. As we’ve all seen over the years their mistakes during and in the postseason have become not merely a talking point amongst the fans but a complete embarrassment to the league when it’s clear that they’ve done an abysmal job of officiating a game. Stern simply cannot accept that they are flawed individuals in terms of their on-court performances and any public criticism of the officials is often followed with a hefty financial punishment of the critic in question. .

Should the NBA commissioner choose to step down in the imminent future then I’d like for the person who succeeds him to use due diligence when it comes to all matters and simply not laud of the league as if it were their own personal fiefdom . That clearly has been the case with David Stern as he ruled the NBA , where from his early days of running the league , as he saw his influence grow and the money that was to be made he certainly made sure nothing stood in his way even if it meant having to turn a once trusted ally into an enemy. There may well be a number people around the league who’ve a great deal of admiration for the commissioner and many of them may well have some very flattering and reverential things to say about him . But I can only assume that neither Mark Cuban or Stan Van Gundy would be atop of that list in their view of Stern as an executive who’s said to be impartial.

Of all the high ranking officials within the four major sports I don’t know if anyone has alienated and has been more disliked by the fans than Bud Selig. From interim commissioner to now having held the position full time , Selig has managed to assume the role of class clown and idiot without ever having to bar an eyelid . It was if he were in character right from the start. And the very fact that he was once a team owner before succeeding Faye Vincent has me believing that the owners didn’t really cast their net all that far or wide in looking for a successor . All they seemingly wanted was someone who’d be at their beck and call as and when needed _ and who would try to put the Players’ Union (MLBPA) in its place. Which is akin to saying that we’ll hand a child a box of matches and see what happens next . You simply know that no good can from those actions.

As many of you know I think that Bud Selig is to baseball what the Congress , Senate and present administration are to the economic health of this country ……….. a complete and utter failure when it comes to dealing with its most inherent and acute issues. Selig for his part along with league hierarchy , owners and the union were complicit in covering up the steroid issue , and that’s even light of the statements made by Jose Canseco and the subsequent book published by Mark Fainaru-Wada and Lance Williams (co authors of Book of Shadows) . As I said at the time when those 105 names came up on the list of then alleged steroid users and the fact that the union and hierarchy were under the impression that the list once in their possession would be destroyed as they were essentially were the ones who requested the testing of the players. Instead they chose to retain those records and when supoenaed by the Justice Department cried foul as the agency used that information to try and make its still ongoing case against Barry Bonds . At what point does the idiocy stop with Bud Selig and the game’s hierarchy and common sense begin to set in and prevail ?

Beyond the steroid issue and the very fact that as a financial concern the game of baseball has some major imbalances that it seemingly doesn’t know how to handle or that they may well choose not to out of sheer ignorance. It’s extremely hard to envisage how the MLB commissioner can repeatedly state that the game is in a very healthy state when for years it has had to assist many of its small market teams merely stay afloat from a financial standpoint . In his almost two decades of holding the game’s highest executive position Bud Selig has brought being a simpleton and an idiot to an art form that could be only admired by the likes of Charlie Chaplin and Buster Keaton were they alive !

Not only content with that issue Selig also looks to enforce his will on a team such as the Tampa Bay Rays by suggesting that they will never be able to stage an MLB All Star Game unless they have a new stadium built . But at no time has he or anyone within the game’s hierarchy come to their assistance in dealing with the politicians within the community at the municipal or state level to provide any type of input that would be of benefit to the organization and its owner Stuart Sternberg . Not only that Selig has also made a point of now pushing the issue to where it has now become something of an all consuming battle between the city of St Petersburg where the team resides at Tropicana Field and the organization (front office) itself. There seems to be no light at the end of the tunnel on this issue but and Selig continues to keep fanning the flames that has provided the discontent between the two factions on the matter.

What might be even more surprising in the midst of this all , while many teams within the league are suffering financially , the commissioner has been so well compensated over the last four years that he’d prove to be the envy of any senior banking executive on Wall Street. From 2006 to 2009 , Bud Selig earned in excess of $65 million accumulative in that span and it begs the question if he’s earning that much then why all the furor by St Louis Cardinals’ manager Tony La Russa belly aching over the team’s slugger Albert Pujols wanting to be well compensated for his productivity and what he means to the team and organization ?

It’s from the sublime to the ridiculous in all things related to Bud Selig and the game of baseball . Many have suggested that by initiating the wildcard system within the game it made it all the more suspenseful in terms of the postseason. And with the added incentive that whomever won the All Star Game between the AL and NL would gain home-field advantage throughout the postseason . True enough , that has been the case but all of that pales into comparison with Bud Selig’s inconsistencies and decision making on so many levels in terms where has gone wrong with many issues concerning the game . The negatives have far outweighed the positives in my belief and will continue to do so until he actually steps down from his role as commissioner.

The decision making as and when it starts prior to Bud Selig’s departure as to the list of candidates quite possibly interviewing for the position and then assuming the role may well be not necessarily a large one . But I’d like to think that whoever is chosen will be a vast improvement upon the present incumbent .

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Picture gallery for your perusal.

At the time of either Bud Selig and David Stern stepping down from their respective positions do you believe that of their legacies will be well respected in terms of their overall achievements ? Or do you feel that the sooner their departure the better off both sports will be , no matter who assumes their roles as the respective commissioners of MLB and the NBA ? Merely leave a comment as to your thoughts on the topics raised in this piece.

Alan aka tophatal ……………………….

http://tophatal.wordpress.com/

🙂

Picture and slide show details .
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(1) Commissioners Of Major Sport Leagues Attend Hearing On Capitol Hill L-R) National Hockey League Commissioner Gary Bettman, National Football League Players Association Executive Director Gene Upshaw,(now deceased – succeeded by DeMaurice Smith) National Football League Commissioner Roger Goodell, National Basketball Association Commissioner David Stern, Major League Baseball Player Association Executive Director Donald Fehr (who now holds a similar position with the NHLPA ) and Major League Baseball Commissioner Bud Selig testify before the US House Subcommittee on Commerce, Trade and Consumer Protection about the use of illegal performance-enhancing drugs in professional sports on Capitol Hill February 27, 2008 in Washington, DC. The subcommittee also heard testimony from officials from the US Olympic Committee, National Thoroughbred Racing and the US Anti-Doping Agency. Chip Smodoville /Getty Images North America ……….

(2) Team representative Tommy Losorda of the Los Angeles Dodgers and MLB Commissioner Bud Selig speak during the MLB First Year Player Draft on June 7, 2010 held in Studio 42 at the MLB Network in Secaucus, New Jersey. Mike Stobe /Getty Images North America ……

(3) John Wall of Kentucky stands with NBA Commissioner David Stern after being drafted with the first pick by the Washington Wizards at Madison Square Garden on June 24, 2010 in New York City. Al Bello /Getty Images ………..

(4) (L-R) Sports Illustrated Group Editor Terry McDonell, Sports Illustrated Writer Tom Verducci and Commissioner of Major League Baseball Bud Selig attend the 2009 Sports Illustrated Sportsman of the Year Celebration at The IAC Building on December 1, 2009 in New York City. Theo Wargo / Getty Images North America ……………

(5) Stern presents Michael Jordan with the 1991-92 MVP award in Chicago, MJ’s third of the five league MVP awards he’d win over the course of his career . Nathaniel S Butler Getty Images ……….

(6) Jeff Pash (background), NFL Executive Vice President and General Counsel, left, and Roger Goodell, NFL commissioner, leave after negotiations with the NFL Players Association involving a federal mediator in Washington, Tuesday, March 8, 2011. AP Photo/ Alex Brandon …..

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Do participate in the above listed poll by placing a vote as you see fit .

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Eye candy ……………. Sally Ferreira

Milani Rose

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We’re Moving On Up …………….But It Ain’t To The Eastside Or That Deluxe Apartment In The Sky


We’re Moving On Up …………….But It Ain’t To The Eastside Or That Deluxe Apartment In The Sky

Well it appears even with a horrendous season in prospect things simply aren’t getting any better for the Sacramento Kings at all. Having had a player selected to be a participant in the NBA’s midseason showcase event of the All Star Game it now seems that the organization may well consider the offer to relocate from the Arco Arena in Sacramento to the city of Anaheim , California . It may well have been a tremendous accolade to have both DeMarcus Cousins and Tyreke Evans selected to the Rookies’ All Star Western Conference roster but it simply cannot hide the overwhelming problems that this franchise now has from a competitive and financial standpoint.

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The Maloof family as owners of this team have simply struggled over the past few seasons merely to keep this franchise a successful and viable concern within the city. And even now with a dwindling attendance for the team’s home games there seems to be no light at the end of the tunnel for the organization. The team is projected to lose in excess of $25 million this year alone but it could quite possibly be a great deal more than that given the economic outlook , albeit that the league hierarchy has already been benevolent to this team as well as several other NBA franchises around the league over the past season.

Courtesy of The San Francisco Chronicle


Another Sign Points to Kings’ Desire to Leave Sacramento

By Sam Amick in counjunction with Fanhouse

With a March 1 deadline to file for relocation looming large in Sacramento and the owners of the Kings continuing discussions with Anaheim Ducks officials regarding a possible move to Southern California, a source close to the situation said Monday that they have yet to deliver documents that were promised to the arena development team in California’s Capital City.

It is, without question, yet another sign that the Maloofs (Gavin and Joe above) are strongly considering the possibility of playing elsewhere next season.

After the Sacramento City Council voted to work with developer David Taylor and arena builder ICON venue group on Feb. 8 in attempt to construct a viable arena plan, the Maloofs issued a statement two days later that they would “provide him with the studies, research and documents done during the course of the last 11 years on the feasibility of a new sports and entertainment facility.” Yet the source told FanHouse that documents have yet to be provided, and all indications are that the Maloofs will only turn their attention back to Sacramento if they can’t find a way to strike a deal in Anaheim.

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As with any presumed relocation of a franchise it would need a majority vote from the board of governors of the NBA which basically is the league’s hierarchy in conjunction with the team owners in order to facilitate the Kings’ move from the state’s capital to Anaheim. From a financial standpoint it would certainly make sense for the organization and I’ve no doubt that team GM Geoff Petrie sees it as the best option for the Kings at this juncture . And it can only be further sanctioned by both George , Gavin and Joe Maloof , who as principal executives and owners of the family’s business and sporting interests must see this as the best way forward for the organization .

On the other hand , I can help but wonder what must be going through the mind of NBA Commissioner David Stern , because for too long he has simply ignored the major economic problems that the league and the owners have simply overlooked. They’ve seen the revenues of the NBA increase exponentially over the last twenty five years and along with the franchises’ worth have appreciated steadily, where the average value of an NBA team is upwards of $ 375 million but yet somehow in the wake of this type of monetary windfall many of these teams find themselves in something of a financial mess. The NBPA (union ) for its part merely looks at this all as simply another reason why they feel that they’re in need of a larger slice of the revenues that they share with the league. And though NBPA Executive Director Billy Hunter along with union President Derek Fisher and their executive committee have been adamant that they will negotiate a fair and equitable agreement as it pertains to the present collective bargaining agreement , you simply get the feeling that though sides are still communicating things are liable to come to a head.

There’s not said to be a great impasse between the two sides but clearly there are some sticking points which neither side will freely admit to _____ that it is creating somewhat of a problem. And if as proposed the union is prepared decertify itself in order to challenge the NBA’s antitrust status within the US Federal Court rather than seek arbitration through a court appointed mediator or the NLRB ( National Labor Relations Board) then you know that the game and the league will be in for dire consequences. League executive Stu Jackson and Billy Hunter have been adamant that they wish for this all to be amicably resolved before the NBA playoffs begin and it seems given the present state of affairs that may well not happen unless both sides are willing to make certain concessions.

The NBA hierarchy has certainly never been willing to open up its books for public scrutiny , albeit , that it is in fact a private enterprise . But at the same time the league is given advantageous tax breaks and with its antitrust exemption guaranteed by the House Oversight Committee and you can well understand why David Stern and the owners would rather keep their financial records one big secret altogether and away from prying eyes.

Given the tumultuous season that the Sacramento Kings have had the only bright spot one might say has been the play of both Tyreke Evans and to a lesser extent DeMarcus Cousins who’s still showing his immaturity and unwillingness to defer to others when needed. Unfortunately Cousins’ talents at the college level and the latitude allowed by John Calipari shows how ill disciplined a player he was and still is . But that asides the real problem facing the Kings is that they’re simply still a work in progress with a great many flaws to this team. And most noticeably there’s a distinct lack of veteran leadership on the floor and that’s something that’s most definitely needed if the team is to improve.

Certainly Paul Westphal is trying to get the youngsters on this roster to buy into his style of coaching and to learn the nuances of the game . But that in of-itself may not be enough to stave off the inevitable concerning the team and its present record (13-40). They’re now in something of a dog fight with the Cleveland Cavaliers , Minnesota Timberwolves and Washington Wizards as to who may well end up with the worse record in the NBA come season’s end. It doesn’t take a betting man at this juncture that barring either Wizards or Kings’ implosion that dubious distinction may well end up belonging to Byron Scott’s ——- team . God knows , the Cavaliers simply find even more redundnant ways of losing games explicably and inexplicably , such has been their ineptitude and abundantly mediocre season !

It’s sad to think that the Sacramento Kings are no longer viewed as a legitimate and perennial contender within the league for an NBA title. But that hasn’t happened since the days when former players Mike Bibby and Chris Webber made the Arco Arena and the Kings a “must see”, can’t miss place to watch an exciting brand of basketball. Those days now appear to be long gone and all but now a distant memory for the most avowed of Sacramento Kings’ fans.

As to what might be the impending move of the Sacramento Kings, it seems that it may well inevitably take place in the off-season. As it’s unlikely that the team would be allowed to move during the season. The organization and the city of Sacramento have had numerous discussions over the team’s domicile and the very fact that neither party can agree upon who ought to be responsible for any refurbishments or the complete upgrade of the venue has in fact led the organization to its present predicament. The team’s lease on the venue is due to expire and even in discussion with the city’s mayor Kevin Johnson no acceptable compromise could in fact be reached concerning both parties’ wishes. In this day and age , when municipalities are cash strapped because of budgetary deficits and constraints the last thing they ought to be doing is to be spending money on a facility that in large part the leasee with their financial resources seems to be unwilling to spend the funds themselves on any specific upgrades even in conjunction with the leaseholder . It has become all the more asinine when repeatedly multi millionaire sports franchise owners who live high on the hog now have the municipalities at their beck and call merely to spend money when those funds are needed elsewhere for services that are of vital benefit to the residents within that city . But you’d be hard pressed to hear the owners , much less the NBA hierarchy or the politicians question the rationale behind spending the funds in such a way. Especially now given the current economic climate and the inane stupidity that has been shown by the NBA with regard to its finances .

This may not be the last such case we have concerning an NBA franchise and its financial situation as it’s clear that many other teams are in a rather precarious situation . One only has to survey the landscape to realize that the New Orleans Hornets now under league ownership and the long drawn out financial debacle that has now engulfed the Detroit Pistons and its reluctant owner Karen Davidson has simply shown us how wayward and somewhat irresponsible the NBA and its owners have become ______ and are !

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Picture gallery for your perusal .

What thoughts if any do you have concerning the Sacramento Kings and its present predicament and how do you feel it will ultimately end for the organization ? Also your thoughts if any you might have concerning that of the both Detroit Pistons and New Orleans Hornets ? Simply wade in with your comments on these matters or anything else you feel that is pertinent to this topic and the NBA at large .

😛

Alan aka tophatal ……………………….

Picture and slide show details below.
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(1) Oklahoma City Thunder’s James Harden (L) and Portland Trailblazers’ Wesley Matthews (C), both of the Sophmore Team, go after a rebound against Sacramento Kings’ DeMarcus Cousins (R) of the Rookie Team during the NBA All Star – Rookie Challenge at the Staples Center in Los Angeles on February 18, 2011. The Rookies won 148-140 . AFP/Getty Images/Mark J Terrill ……

(2) LOS ANGELES, CA ,. (L-R) Eric Bledsoe (12) of the Los Angeles Clippers and Rookie Team, Greg Monroe (10) of the Detroit Pistons and the Rookie Team, DeMarcus Cousins (15) of the Sacramento Kings and the Rookie Team and Stephen Curry (30) of the Golden State Warriors and the Sophomore Team react during the T-Mobile Rookie Challenge and Youth Jam at Staples Center on February 18, 2011 in Los Angeles, California. Photo by Kevork Djansezian/Getty Images …….

(3) Tyreke Evans (6) of the Sacramento Kings, who is missing the game due to injury, throws the ball during the T-Mobile Rookie Challenge and Youth Jam at Staples Center on February 18, 2011 in Los Angeles, California. Photo by Kevork Djansezian/Getty Images ……

(4) Sacramento Kings head coach Paul Westphal, left, questions official John Goble about a foul call during the second half against the Oklahoma City Thunder in a NBA basketball game in Sacramento, Calif., Saturday, Feb. 12, 2011. The Thunder beat the Kings 99-97 . AP Photo/Rich Pedroncelli ……

(5) (L-R) Brothers George Maloof, Gavin Maloof and Joe Maloof watch a preseason game between the Sacramento Kings and the Los Angeles Lakers at the Thomas & Mack Center October 13, 2010 in Las Vegas, Nevada. The Lakers won 98-95. Getty Images North America / Ethan Miller ….

(6) Inset Sacramento Kings general manager Geoff Petrie joins the Grant Napear show to talk about the Kings’ incredible victory over the Grizzlies and he feels the Kings are a better team than their record indicates and sees the Kings improving with each game. courtesy of CBS Sacramento/Grant Napier Show …… @ copyrighted material all rights reserved .

(7) Former NBA star Kevin Johnson the current mayor of Sacramento. The city council and the Kings’ organization have been at odds concerning the team’s lease of the city owned ARCO Arena . Many of the Kings’ grievances lay in the fact that the aged venue is in need of refurbishing and major renovation and neither side can agree on who should bear the burden of the costs or whether or not the expense should be shared between the two parties. At the same time the Kings’ leaseof the facility is due to expire . AFP/Photo/ Carter Yates ……….

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NB : By clicking on the respective links below you can view the latest news , stats and details as it relates to the NBA and Sacramento Kings.

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Sacramento Kings’ history

Sacramento Kings’ 2010-11 schedule

Sacramento Kings’ team stats

Sacramento Kings current form by win streak

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Eye candy …………… the ubiquitous Tammy Torres Not so debilitating after all !

It’s hard knock life and I’d to knock the shizz-nick out Tammy !

Who wouldn’t want to share with Tammy a lick of her ‘lollipops’ ?

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The Family Stand …………………. “Ghetto Heaven”

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If You Can’t Beat ’em Join ’em ……As In Keepin’ Up With The Joneses …… The NBA Had Better Keep Themselves In Check …………..


If You Can’t Beat ’em Join ’em ……As In Keepin’ Up With The Joneses …… The NBA Had Better Keep Themselves In Check …………..

As many of you are no doubt aware the NFL has its growing labor problems with the NFLPA . And at this moment in time coming, of a monumentally success of Superbowl (SBXLIV) and the fact the event was the most watched televised event television history. One would’ve thought this would be enough an indication , wherein NFL Commissioner Roger Goodell and his counterpart, NFLPA Executive Director DeMaurice Smith would be on the same when it came to negotiating a renewed and improved collective bargaining agreement ? Well, the chasm between the two sides and the acrimony that exists would lead one to believe that there would be a better chance of a negotiated ‘peace agreement’ between the Palestinians and the Israeli’s.

Now it appears that the chasm between the two and their respective parties is now beyond any conceivable acknowledgment where the two can come to some accord. And with a March 5th deadline approaching for an agreement to be reached. Failure to do so will either lead to a work stoppage or the mere fact the upcoming season will go ahead but without there being the NFL mandated salary cap under which all of the teams operate under. I’ll leave it up for you to decide the sort of mayhem envisaged were that scenario to take place !

NBA  Commissoner <strong> David  Stern </strong>  is  seen  here  seated  beside     NBPA  Executive  Director <strong>  Billy  Hunter  </strong>  at   last   season's   NBA  All   Star   Weekend.   The  two  answered  questions   posed to  them  by  the  convened  press  and  surrounding media.   photo  appears  courtesy  of   <strong>  NBAE/Getty Images/</strong>  Bill  Baptiste  ....................
NBA Commissoner David Stern is seen here seated beside NBPA Executive Director Billy Hunter at last season's NBA All Star Weekend. The two answered questions posed to them by the convened press and surrounding media. photo appears courtesy of NBAE/Getty Images/ Bill Baptiste ....................

Now comes word that the NBA and its hierarchy are said to be facing the very same dilemma with its union counterpart, in the form of the NBPA (NBA Players’ Union) and their wish to renegotiate the terms under which their present collective bargaining agreement has been set up. NBA Commissioner David Stern and his union counterpart NBPA Executive Director Billy Hunter , while having something of a cordial relationship. Both sides are known to be wide apart as to what each views as equitable as to how they can reach an amicable accord to an agreement. Chances are that both sides are prepared to play ‘hard ball’ while at the same time showing their intransigence at the acuteness of the situation. The gravities of which , would be compounded were there to be a labor stoppage and lockout, initiated by the owners and that of the NBA hierarchy.

Courtesy of SB Nation

NBA Labor Negotiations : Praying A Lockout Doesn’t Happen

Feb 8, 2010 – We’re still over a year away from the expiration of the current Collective Bargaining Agreement, but the fireworks have already started.

In a nutshell, here’s the problem: with declining attendance numbers, the bad economy and escalating player salaries, owners are losing a lot of money under the current model. To get some of that money back, they’ll fight for a redistribution of what’s known as “Basketball Related Income,” i.e. whatever revenue comes in. They want a larger slice of the pie, to put it simply. They also want to roll back salaries and potentially change to a salary-cap system that more closely mirrors football’s hard cap

The players understand all of that, but while they’d likely accept a slight decline in player salaries, they’d like to keep the system pretty much the way it is. That means no fundamental changes, only minor ones.

They probably won’t like the owners’ first proposal, then, which will be presented to NBA player representatives during next week’s All-Star weekend. Ric Bucher of ESPN reports:

The proposal, a source familiar with talks said, includes rollbacks that could reduce maximum guaranteed salaries, both for veterans such as Kobe Bryant and LeBron James, as well as up-and-comers like Kevin Durant and Derrick Rose, to almost a third of what they would have been eligible for under the current agreement.

Perhaps the biggest shocker: The owners’ proposal includes a provision that would require any pre-existing deals to be revised to conform to the new deal’s limits.

The value of a maximum contract would fall from $120 million plus to $60 million (and $50 million for those signing their first extensions of their rookie contracts). But that’s not all. The owners are also pushing for the abolishment of all cap exceptions, which thereby creates a hard cap like we have in football. To make matters worse, the owners want less than half of every long-term deal to be guaranteed, which would allow teams to just cut players after a certain number of years if they like.

Jeez. Why not ban agents while you’re at it?

Predictably, the players who have spoken out are less than thrilled. Adonal Foyle, who is the vice president of the Players Association, called the proposal “ludicrous,” “rash” and “unfair.”

“A system like [the new proposal] would be too restrictive, and it doesn’t jibe with what we think the league is. We have been willing to negotiate a guarantee that we don’t get over a certain threshold, and no other businesses do that. We hold back 9 percent of our income so that the owners can make sure they are covered on the back end. We have given up a lot of stuff, and they have given up a lot of stuff, so I think to start off a negotiation in this rash a term, I think it’s unfair,” Foyle said.

In an interview with SB Nation’s Phoenix Suns blog Bright Side of the Sun, Louis Amundson, Phoenix’s player representative, agreed, though he seemed a bit more willing to compromise.

“I think the main thing, we don’t want to see an NBA where there’s no guaranteed contracts like the NFL and where they reduce the number of years for guaranteed contracts. Because then it just makes it so hard for the guys coming in and the draft pics. That’s a stiatuion I think we are going to stay firm on. But there’s other issues that I think are a little more grayer that I think that the union is a little more willing to compromise on. So we’ll see. It’s early and there’s still a whole lot of issues to cover.”

Amundson also talked about the issue of public perception.

“You don’t want to turn off any of the fans and I think in this economy I think both sides ideally are going to have to compromise a bit with the dollar figures. We make a lot of money and so do they but it’s a good business so there’s a lot of money involved so that’s part of it. That’s part of the biz.”

That strikes me as the key issue here. During the last contentious CBA negotiations in 1999, the players were ultimately forced to make several concessions because they could not get the public on their side. They complained too much about being underpaid and “fighting for their survival,” which isn’t exactly what the average Joe making 1/20th of your salary wants to hear.

It’ll be interesting to see how they approach things this year.The owners’ initial proposal, which is so incredibly drastic, was put in place with that in mind. The owners likely feel they can lowball the players because they have superior public relations and know the players will suffer more if they strike. The key for the players this time is crafting a better PR strategy and making sure they can create leverage among the public.

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And while neither Hunter or Stern have been forthcoming, with a formal public statement on the issue. There have been rumblings of discontent from both sides, without there being any open accusations being directed from one party against the other. But it’s clear that once that impasse has grown wider then the gloves will come off. And then things for all sense and purpose could become extremely dirty and somewhat unsavory. While there’s no denying that a lockout would hurt the NBA irrevocably . One has to now wonder what the mindset happens to be amongst the parties concerned and in particular whether or not they might happen to care what the ‘NBA fans’ might think of this all ? Clearly those concerns have yet to manifest itself with anything responsible that has been forthcoming from either party. As I’ve alluded to earlier , neither side has yet to respond with a public statement to media. So selective and secretive have been both David Stern and Billy Hunter on this issue. That you would probably have to hire a soothsayer to find out what either of the two are said to be thinking on this very matter at this moment in time.

Guaranteed salaries in imminent new contracts for LeBron James and Kobe Bryant would be reduced under an owners proposal to almost a third of what they would have been eligible for currently.
Guaranteed salaries in imminent new contracts for LeBron James and Kobe Bryant would be reduced under an owners proposal to almost a third of what they would have been eligible for currently. photo appears courtesy of Getty Images/ Andrew D. Bernstein .................

Courtesy of ESPN.com

Proposed CBA would limit LeBron deal

By Ric Bucher ESPN The Magazine

The NBA will put its marquee players on display in next weekend’s All-Star Game in Dallas, but the party-like atmosphere is sure to be chilled when the stars learn the details of the collective bargaining agreement offer presented at the end of January by commissioner David Stern to players’ union director Billy Hunter.

The proposal, a source familiar with talks said, includes rollbacks that could reduce maximum guaranteed salaries, both for veterans such as Kobe Bryant and LeBron James, as well as up-and-comers like Kevin Durant and Derrick Rose, to almost a third of what they would have been eligible for under the current agreement.

Perhaps the biggest shocker: The owners’ proposal includes a provision that would require any pre-existing deals to be revised to conform to the new deal’s limits.

The current deal is set to expire as of July 1, 2011. The league’s owners have the option to extend it one more year, but they’ve already made it clear they don’t intend to.

“The league has to be careful,” said one agent who requested anonymity. “If the top players are united against David, that’s going to make for a tough fight. It could get very ugly.”

Presenting a new proposal nearly 18 months in advance of the current deal’s anticipated expiration is unprecedented, several sources said. Doing so right before All-Star Weekend also seems odd, particularly since Dallas Mavericks owner Mark Cuban, the weekend’s host owner, has crowed about the event drawing a record 100,000 fans and a surrounding spectacle dwarfing that of the NFL’s Super Bowl XLIV.

“It’s the most dire economic time, so they want to take advantage of that and scare the players now,” the agent said. “It is a negotiation. This is what you do.”

The total value for a veteran maximum deal would be well under $60 million and for players currently on rookie salary-scale deals well under $50 million, the source familiar with the proposal said. Fully guaranteed maximum deals also could be a thing of the past, with the proposal allowing for less than half of any contract to be guaranteed.

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In order to read Ric Bucher’s article in its entirety
just click on the link provided herein
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The greed that exists within professional sports is no different from that of Wall St or for that matter another other large corporate enterprise that seeks to get bigger. The real problem becomes an issue when greed is then supplanted by deceit, lies and a great deal of corrupt practices and actions from both sides. Though neither party would be willing to confess that they are prepared to stoop that low in order to get an advantage over the other. But the real problem however, lies in the fact that the only person who tends to get hurt in the end , is the consumer , as in the most ardent of NBA fans. These are the ones who spend a great deal of money to attend the games and see a bunch overpaid high priced stars display their extensive and vast array of skills. But who for the latter part couldn’t much less about the fans or what they might indeed think. And the same too can be said of the NBA’s hierarchy and that of the owners as well. Where in large part ,the greed of all of the parties concerned , seems to have no boundaries whatsoever !

The NBA can ill afford to meander down the same path as that of the NFL and without deference to anyone. But it appears that they too much like their counterparts are willing to act in the same extraordinary fashion . As I’d alluded to in an earlier article entitled …..”Calmer Heads Ought To Prevail ……..But We’re Talking About The NFL and The NFLPA (Players’ Union) Here …….. So What Gives ? (Click on the link herein to read the piece in its entirety) Greed in no matter what form it takes , it has a tendency to bring out the darker side in us all and that’s without exception. And for the likes of the NBA, its hierarchy and that of the NBPA , that now appears to be the case ! It’d appear that they are unwilling to keep themselves in check , in order to give the impression that they do indeed care about the game. In all honesty ,that care only goes as far as to where they view the origin of the next almighty dollar !

‘Money’ by Pink Floyd .

Alan Parkins aka tophatal …………

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Budding  actress  and   model <strong> Naureen Zaim </strong> seen  here   posing  for <strong>  Maxim  Magazine</strong>.     Young  Naureen  has  let  it be  known  that  she wants  to  be  taken  seriously   in  every  facet of her  career.  And   looking  at  this  picture I can  understand  why  !
Budding actress and model Naureen Zaim seen here posing for Maxim Magazine. Young Naureen has let it be known that she wants to be taken seriously in every facet of her career. And looking at this picture I can understand why !