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Oh, the humanity!

After two days of pronounced optimism and positivity from both sides, NBA labor negotiations came crashing down again today, and commissioner David Stern announced the cancellation of games until November 30. Any dreams of a full 82-game schedule? Gone. So close, yet so far away.

More.....

Derek Fisher is leaving NYC, so any hopes that they'll try to kiss and make up tomorrow are also dashed. Instead, they'll go back to their neutral corners for a few days, at minimum, and then start this whole dysfunctional process all over again. Howard Beck of the New York Times (yes, I do have a man crush on him; I think he's great) breaks it down for us here.

In fact, since the union and owners are doing such a poor job in failing to deliver a new CBA and torching their own potential earnings in lost games in the process, I'd like to take this opportunity to thank those who are performing admirably through this mess: NBA beat reporters, who are reporting on the scene in hotel lobbies and, in at least one case, out on the sidewalk, to bring us the latest windbaggery and doublespeak from the negotiating parties. In addition to Beck:

Ken Berger of CBS Sports

Adrian Wojnarowski of Yahoo Sports

Brian Mahoney of the Associated Press

David Aldridge of nba.com

Sam Amico of Fox Sports

Links are to their Twitter feeds, from which you can learn anything else you want to know about how this sausage is being made. The work they're doing is keeping us all informed, even if the news is crappy so far.

All is not lost here. The parties will be back at it again soon and we'll have a season. As Suns fans, we can be grateful that the 82-game season idea is kaput. Can you imagine Steve Nash trying to play a tightly condensed 82-game schedule? When all is said and done, it will still be a tightly condensed schedule, but at least only a 50-70 game length.

In the meantime, hey, quite a baseball game going on here tonight!


Today Could Be the Day!

Yahoo Sports' Adrian Wojnarowski is one of many who thinks there is an excellent chance the NBA achieves labor peace later today.

We'll be all over it here at BSotS when there is something firm to announce. In the meantime, cross your fingers, rub your lucky rabbit's foot, pray if you're so inclined. We need real basketball!


Billy Hunter believes the players and owners are “within striking distance” of a deal, but as Derek Fisher cautioned, “It gets tougher towards the end.” Every NBA fan must be...

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On this day three years ago, ValleyoftheSuns.com joined the basketball blogging community. We can only hope that David Stern and Billy Hunter decide to give us the gift of ending the lockout after...

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Buckle your seat belts because the roller coaster is soaring back up. Owners and NBPA representatives have been meeting in New York City since 12 PM EDT today and are still meeting as of 1 AM EDT. Several NBA reporters have tweeted encouraging reports, including this one from Sports Illustrated's Chris Mannix:

@ChrisMannixSI: One source briefed on the talks Wednesday said agreement by the end of the week "very possible." "Lot of real progress tonight," source said.

Talks today have focused on system issues, including salary cap and luxury tax, with the implication that the basketball-related income split will follow once those are resolved. Union chief Billy Hunter didn't explicitly reject the concept of a 50-50 BRI split when talks broke off last week, as long as some of the other issues were agreeable to the players. And the owners have publicly offered the 50-50 split, so a deal isn't so far away. According to the New York Times' Howard Beck (his full story can be found here):

@HowardBeckNYT: When talks broke last week, union said they needed to know what system was before they'd even entertain 50-50.

All sounds promising, yes? It does, except that we've been here before in the last few weeks. The sides will likely meet again Thursday, after I'd assume they sleep in after what must have been an exhausting day today. And, maybe again Friday. Talks could come crashing down at any point and leave us as frustrated as we were the last time, and the time before that.

Keep the seat belt buckled and try not to let the roller coaster make you nauseous. Hopefully it'll be over soon, and we can get some cotton candy and deep-fried Twinkies.


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