The NBA and the National Basketball Players Association have agreed to extend the deadline for CBA negotiations until Nov. 9, according to The Athletic’s Shams Charania. This is the fifth time that the two sides have agreed to postpone the deadline and give themselves more time for discussion.
In a statement released to Charania last week, the NBPA wrote, “The NBPA is actively engaged in discussions with our players in an effort to be able to reach agreements with our League and team partners to address these signifiant and complex issues. Each of us has a stake in doing what’s fair, what’s best for our business and what respects the rights and interests of all stakeholders. We are confident we will get there.”
Earlier this week, the two sides solved their biggest issue by tentatively coming to an agreement to begin the 2020-21 season on Dec. 22. The players were initially not fond of the league’s 72-game, pre-Christmas proposal due to how quick of a turnaround it would be from last season, but they eventually gave way, in large part due to financial concerns.
Also on the economic front, big topics of conversation have been the salary cap and luxury tax levels. As it stands, both of those are expected to remain flat — that is, simply carrying over last season’s numbers of $109.14 million for the cap and $132.63 million for the tax threshold, respectively. In addition, there’s also an escrow situation to figure out.
The escrow is the amount of money withheld from the players in case the league does not meet revenue projections. Usually they get that money back, but it’s unlikely that would happen this season due to lost revenue from the shut down and the inability to have fans in arenas. While agents were originally “bracing for the possibility of up to 40 percent of the escrow being withheld from players,” according to a report from ESPN last month, the latest number being discussed is 18 percent.
Furthermore, the league and the players will have to come to an agreement about the offseason process, which will be extremely condensed. Free agency is expected to begin as soon as possible following the draft on Nov. 18 so that players signing with new teams will be able to join in time for training camps sometime in early December.