By Frank Hanrahan
Despite lengthy talks and even a federal mediator in tow, the NBA laborissue still has not been settled and the lockout continues on as owners and players remain apart on a new agreement.
The two sides spent the past three days with mediator George Cohen, basically trying to figure out how to divide basketball-related income and how to structure the salary cap.
NBA deputy commissioner Adam Silver after negotiations broke off Thursday night: "We have certain core beliefs that we think are absolutely necessary. At this time, we have no further discussions scheduled."
Silver added: "Ultimately we were unable to bridge the gap that separates the two parties. We understand the ramifications of where we are. We're saddened on behalf of the game."
NBA players union rep Derek Fisher insists that the players did not walk out on talks Thursday. Fisher called NBA claims they are not willing to make a deal "upsetting and frustrating."
According to NBA players union head Billy Hunter, the owners want a 50-50 spot on revenue sharing which the union will not accept. "Philosophically, it's a real large gap between the groups." Hunter added the NBA wants a pre-condition of 50-50 BRI to meet again.
The first two weeks of the seasonhave already been cancelled and more games will likelybe lost. The end does not appear to be soon.
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