Well, that was quick. Less than 20 hours after players agreed (more or less) to go on strike, Adrian Wojnarowski and Shams Charania have reported that the NBA players made a vote to resume the playoffs earlier this morning. Early reports are that while tonight’s games will be postponed, play could resume as soon as Friday, and will certainly be underway by the weekend.

At the moment, it’s a little unclear what has prompted such a quick turnaround from the players after their decision last night. While the strike last night was certainly impromptu, it seemed a bit too potent to cave in less than a day. Here are a few possibilities as to what happened.

  1. The Majority Won Out: The reporting from last night, while still a bit shaky (only the players can truly speak on everything), seemed to indicate that the Clippers and Lakers led the charge on the strike, with some support from elsehwere. Still, it seemed clear that the majority of players were in favor of continuing the season. In a straight up vote, that majority could have won.
  2. Sleeping On it Cooled Heads: Equally as likely is that a lot of players, who were fired up yesterday in the heat of the moment, woke up this morning and decided that while they might have issues with the bubble or the NBA’s approach to political matters, they still want to finish the playoffs. The players have already sacrificed a lot so far in the bubble, and “giving up” midway could have become unacceptable.
  3. Financial Implications Were Too Much: This is directly tied to 1 and 2, but it’s easy to understand that cancelling the rest of the playoffs would have massive implications. This would shake up not only the new Collective Bargaining Agreement (CBA), but would also take money directly from the players, which is bearable for the LeBron’s of the world, but much less so the fringe players. Owners and league officials could have reiterated the financial pitfalls of stopping play, or the players themselves could have reflected on the discussions made prior to the bubble. Either way, reports of LeBron (one of the leaders last night) changing his mind today show the potent impacts of the financial considerations.
  4. Actual Concessions from the NBA and Owners are Coming: It seems somewhat improbable that the players were able to formulate demands and receive concessions in the condensed timeframe, but it’s possible promises were made that changes of some kind or another are in the offing. Key player representatives are meeting with league officials later today to discuss next steps, and we will see what changes might come of this. For right now, it seems like major concessions are not close to happening.

Well, that about wraps it up. Stay tuned to the big names of NBA reporting (Woj, Shams, Chris Haynes, etc.) for further updates throughout the day. For right now, it seems that with this vote from the NBA players, the playoffs will resume quite shortly.

22 Comments

  • Avatar chogokin says:

    I’m really hoping #4 is what happened. Cuban has been the only politically vocal NBA owner that I’m aware of, so here’s hoping there will be more not necessarily vocal owners, but more owners involved in helping reform their communities – would sure go a long way towards actually justifying all those public tax breaks for arenas.

    And I’m really hoping #1 isn’t what happened. I could easily see the Clips being totally out of it mentally because they didn’t want to play anymore, but have just been overruled by the majority. Hell, the Clips being out of whack is what’s happened already in 4/5 games and that was *before* the Jacob Blake shooting.

    P.S. In case anyone is curious, it looks like this is the Kenosha Police Dept’s characterization of the incident: https://www.cnn.com/2020/08/27/us/jacob-blake-wisconsin-thursday/index.html

    • Avatar World B. We says:

      It’s about Lebron again, so we can continue 👍
      I swear dudes and dudettes. Players upset with Milwaukee’s lack of communication? Why? It was a Milwaukee issue. They boycotted 1 game, which is appropriate. Lebron gets out-woked and It’s, “um. Um. Um. The ENTIRE FUCKING SEASON! You guys are all billionaires too right?”

      • Avatar World B. We says:

        It’s not shut up and dribble because God bless Muhhamad Ali, and I know the bloodshed is overwhelming and disgusting and it rattles to the very core. But this is the guy who thought THE DECISION was a good idea. And the Clippers follow his bluff of a cliff like lemmings

    • lying dog-faced pony soldier lying dog-faced pony soldier says:

      “owners involved in helping reform their communities” — We thankfully have one of those. Ballmer is investing in the LA community and footing the bill himself for the new Clippers palace. Highly unusual in recent American pro sports.

      • Avatar osamu6238 says:

        If there’s any duo in the NBA which I have the faith has the betterment of black america as the goal and resources to make significant changes in society, it is Doc and Steve Ballmer. Unfortunately, I’m just not sure if there is much that can be accomplished by throwing money at this issue.

        I’m not nearly educated enough to make any wild proclamations on what can or should be done, I just hope someone smarter than me has some answers while I have time to get myself more educated on how I as an individual can help.

        • Avatar dhpat says:

          Total agreement! They will help lead the way for a better future.

        • Avatar Thretch says:

          I don’t believe throwing money at it will accomplish enough. The public has to want it and DEMAND it. So have a candidate for EVERY role from president to local sheriff have an agenda in which they completely pledge to fix this. Then encourage everyone to vote for them regardless of the rest of their agendas and then hold them accountable. Yes, it’s a revolution. But nothing short of that will accomplish anything.

          And maybe Ballmer and Cuban and many others can contribute to the campaigns of the candidates. That’s where they can put their money. But we have to put people in power who are committed to positive change. That’s how America is supposed to work. But we don’t follow through.

        • Robert Flom Robert Flom says:

          Money will do a lot. Specifically, money thrown at candidates and policies to make real change, like defunding the police and putting much stricter restrictions on them.

          • Avatar chogokin says:

            I wish money didn’t do a lot. But our political/governmental systems have been so perverted that money is sadly probably the biggest influence – there’s a reason “lobbyist” exists as a profession.

          • Lucas Hann Lucas Hann says:

            yeah, campaign finance reform is a secondary issue to more immediate, pressing needs like disbanding police departments, but passing campaign finance reform would be a huge step towards getting policies that are already massively popular–like legalizing weed, medicare for all, etc. Unfortunately, both parties have their hands in the special interests cookie jar, so getting a substantive bill passed feels next to impossible.

    • Robert Flom Robert Flom says:

      I think it’s mostly a combination of 2 and 3, with a dash of the other two.

  • Avatar chogokin says:

    Update: https://www.espn.com/nba/story/_/id/29754265/michael-jordan-urges-owners-meeting-listening-better-talking

    “League sources said the owners were unanimous in their support of the players and spent much of their meeting discussing ways in which they could amplify the players’ voices.”

    So that’s a good look (assuming it’s accurate, of course). Hopefully the multi-billion dollar organization that is the NBA can actually accomplish some good for society as a whole.

    Also I’m glad to see MJ being active in this discussion, he’s come a long way from “Republicans buy sneakers too.”

  • lying dog-faced pony soldier lying dog-faced pony soldier says:

    “Vice President Mike Pence’s chief of staff, Marc Short, said Thursday that NBA protests over the police shooting of Jacob Blake in Kenosha, Wisconsin, are “absurd and silly,” while White House senior adviser Jared Kushner told CNBC that the players were “very fortunate” to be in a financial position to “take a night off from work.”

    https://www.espn.com/nba/story/_/id/29752844/mike-pence-chief-calls-nba-protests-absurd-jared-kushner-says-reach-lebron-james

    • Avatar Thretch says:

      Wait a minute! So protests by the less financially sound is a lawless mob, but thoughtful protest by pro athletes is stupid. So the message is “don’t protest, just shut up”?

      Umm, I used to live in this place called “America”, but now I don’t know where I am.

      • lying dog-faced pony soldier lying dog-faced pony soldier says:

        “Shut up and dribble.” This is a dark time. 67 days until the constitutional crisis.

        • Avatar chogokin says:

          I think it’s actually “shut up and dribble [unless you agree with me].” Funny how these people are more than happy to interview Curt Schilling, Aubrey Huff, Mike Ditka, or Lou Holtz about their views on politics. If you don’t know who those fellows are (they aren’t NBA guys, they’re MLB, MLB, NFL, and college football guys respectively), I don’t recommend looking them up – they’ve got some really reprehensible opinions on…well, life, in general.

          The cherry on top of this hypocrisy sundae is that these are the same people who rally against “cancel culture” but then threaten to not watch the NBA ever again and think that nobody else should either just because an NBA player said something they don’t like.

  • Avatar John Maclean says:

    We talk a lot about the pioneers of civil rights and sports and rightfully so. I would just like to point out that it’s perhaps even more impressive that today’s athletes have the financial security to not get involved yet they still find it within themselves to pay it forward. When one is 25 or even 30 years old they may not have all the answers but what’s most important is that they ask the questions. Lastly, the difference between Kaep and Muhammed Ali is that the latter came back and rose to greatness which forced everyone including his detractors to respect his positions. This is why I think it’s imperative that the players see this through because it will be an historic testimony to values and beliefs if they do. Here’s hoping those of us who love the NBA can take something special from this and also change some minds along the way. Peace.

    • Avatar chogokin says:

      Yea, even for as corrupt and horrible a matchmaking system as boxing has, at least it’d be pretty hard for them to blackball any individual boxer (they’re all closer to independent contractors than employees of a league). What happened to Kaep was so blatantly messed up that I’m super bummed out that both he and Eric Reid settled their lawsuits w/ the NFL out of court – I REALLY would’ve liked to have seen some discovery of documents and depositions take place.

  • Avatar chogokin says:

    Another update: https://www.espn.com/nba/story/_/id/29759939/nba-announces-playoffs-resume-saturday

    “In every NBA city where the league’s franchise owns and controls its arena property, team owners will work with local officials to turn those arenas into voting locations for the 2020 general election, giving constituents a way to vote in person during the coronavirus pandemic.”

    This seems like a good, common sense, first step for owners to take, and it basically costs them nothing – the arenas are already there and built, why not use them for some good? Glad to see the NBA taking this seriously, glad to see that the players’ (temporary) strike got a ton of media attention, and also obviously glad to see games resuming. Hope this is the start of a larger movement for good that lasts.

    • Avatar ajk777 says:

      I agree. Now if the other leagues could follow on that idea of stadiums being open to voting and voting booths.

      I’m also glad the strike was temporary. Please let there be no more interruptions from this point on.

  • Avatar TheGreatestShowman says:

    So many interesting Clippers related stories over the past 48 hours – the team voting to leave the bubble, Kawhi speaking out, Bev calling out the union, Ballmer establishing the Forum as a voting place, etc. It’s obviously too dynamic an environment for new articles. Wonder if there’s a better forum/format to engage on this? Or is it just go on to Twitter, which I can’t stand BTW.