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Berger: full labor session “not likely before August”

NBA & NBA Players Association Announce New CBA

SAN ANTONIO - JUNE 21: (L-R) Billy Hunter, President of the NBA Players Association, looks on as NBA commissioner David Stern speaks at a press conference announcing that the NBA and the NBA Players Association have agreed in principal on a new 6-year Collective Bargining Agreement (CBA) prior to Game 6 of the NBA Finals between the Detroit Pistons and the San Antonio Spurs on June 21, 2005 at SBC Center in San Antonio, Texas. NOTE TO USER: User expressly acknowledges and agrees that, by downloading and/or using this Photograph, user is consenting to the terms and conditions of the Getty Images License Agreement. (Photo by Brian Bahr/Getty Images)

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The invaluable Ken Berger of CBS.com has the story:

While the basketball world was obsessed Tuesday with the release of an NBA schedule that may never happen, CBSSports.com has learned that the owners and players may not convene for another full-blown collective bargaining session until August.

It is up for interpretation, however, whether that would put the two sides behind the negotiating pace set during the 1998-99 lockout. Back then, it was 37 days between the imposition of the lockout on July 1 and the next bargaining session on Aug. 6...

...It is possible that the two staffs could negotiate again next week, but sources said it does not appear likely that a full session -- including Stern, Hunter, Kessler, owners and players -- could occur until sometime in August. Though this technically would put the two sides behind the pace from 1998-99, when the lockout resulted in a shortened 50-game schedule, it is possible that the smaller meetings could create some much-needed momentum before the heavy hitters become involved in the process again.


Sigh. There are still a lot of big issues that have to be resolved before basketball actually starts up again. All we can do as fans is hope that all of this gets worked out by the time the newly released schedule says that the season will begin.