Adam Silver On Hard Cap, Lottery, CBA

Earlier today the NBA’s Board of Governors voted against changes to the draft lottery, with only 17 teams voting to change the current system, which was six short of the required 23 votes needed to pass the reforms. NBA commissioner Adam Silver addressed the vote and other issues during a press conference this afternoon, the highlights of which were relayed by Ken Berger of

  • Silver indicated that one third of the league’s franchises are losing money, notes Berger. This is significant because this is happening despite the owners getting the players to accept a 12 percent reduction in their share of the league’s revenues during the last labor negotiations. It could also be the league setting up their bargaining stance for 2017’s pending negotiations.
  • Berger asked Silver if all 30 teams aren’t making a profit on July 1, 2017, the date that the current CBA can be opted out of, is that reason enough for another lockout? Silver responded by saying, “No. No, because the caveat has always been, if well managed. And I would also say, if you don’t have a hard-cap system, for example, one of the teams that isn’t profitable are the Brooklyn Nets. That’s an election they’re free to make under our compensation system. They’ve elected to be unprofitable. My preference would be to have a harder cap, where teams couldn’t elect to spend so much more than other teams.”
  • When asked if achieving a hard cap in the next CBA will be a take-it-or-leave-it issue, Silver said, “No, not at all. There’s gradations of hardness in terms of the cap as well. I wish our current cap system was harder. It’s what we proposed last time around, but we compromised.”
  • Silver called the perception that teams are tanking, “corrosive perception,” notes Ira Winderman of The Sun Sentinel (Twitter links). Silver also added that if lottery reform eventually is adopted, it will come with teams being, “appropriately on notice.” That statement seems to indicate that if any changes were adopted they wouldn’t necessarily take effect for the 2015 draft lottery.
  • Silver also briefly addressed the possibility that either the players or the owners would opt out of the current CBA in 2017, saying, “It’s premature for even me to be concerned,” Winderman tweets. It would appear that the league should be at least a little concerned, as the new NBPA head Michele Roberts has already hinted that the players would choose to opt out in light of the new $24 billion TV deal that will begin in 2016.

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