But for the most powerful and influential stars in a sport that is locked out, I wonder what all of these appearances, globe-trotting promotional tours and threats of signing with rinky-dink overseas teams are doing for the strength and resolve of the players association and its ability to unleash strong, meaningful voices against the owners' demands. Why have the loudest voices in the sport suddenly gone silent?
"They should be talking about how horrible the owners' deal is and how little it's changed over two years of negotiations," one prominent player agent said. "The deal's horrific. It's draconian in what they're trying to do. I would be emphasizing that as much as possible. That I don't get; I would think they would just be hammering every chance they get."
Instead, they're traveling the world selling shoes and apparel, tweeting about the Cowboys and emitting glorious twitpics of their view of the Pacific Ocean during breakfast.
Tom Brady, Peyton Manning and Drew Brees made headlines by attaching their names to a lawsuit as they fought back against being locked out. Carmelo Anthony poses for a photo with a panda. Which one is the more effective labor negotiation tactic?
Except for their t-shirt solidarity, the NBA players haven't really done much.
Kevin Durant's comments sum up the lax attitude:
"No doubt, no doubt. It's a tough situation," Durant said of the current status of the NBA. "I want to play, every NBA player wants to play in the regular scheduled time so we'll see what happens … I think right now it really hasn't hit all the players yet that we're having a lockout right now, but once September hits that's when we're really going to start to know, feel the effects of the lockout."
Consider this a collective slap upside the head to the players and their union leaders.