Every morning, we compile the links of the day and dump them here… highlighting the big storyline. Because there's nothing quite as satisfying as a good morning dump.
"Each side is going to meet with the mediator on Monday, and if there's a breakthrough, it's going to come on Tuesday," Stern said in an interview for NBA TV. "And if not, I think that the season is really going to potentially escape from us, because we aren't making any progress … how many times does it pay to keep meeting, and to have the same things thrown back at you? We're ready to sit down and make a deal. I don't believe that the union is. Hopefully by Tuesday, aided by the mediator, they'll be ready to make a deal. Certainly I'll bring my owners ready to make a deal."
Stern said it was "awful" that fans have had to miss out on potential games, and that people who work in the league's arenas may lose income or their jobs. "And that's why I'm delighted that the mediator is in, because he does represent the President's view — he is a presidential appointee — and maybe with his moral suasion, we might be able to make a deal."
I've tried to remain optimistic through this entire process. But that's because I thought the owners cared the tiniest bit about fans and the game. They don't. They care about profits.
As for the federal mediator, I doubt he will have an impact at all. Mediation only works if both sides agree to allow the mediator to make the final decision. This guy has no power. He's going to review the situation, make some suggestions and leave.
If you want a smack upside the head, check out these quotes from union chief Billy Hunter:
“David Stern promised me a lockout three years ago. We had a private meeting and he told me at that time that he told the owners he would get them what they wanted as long as they agree to a lockout of at least a year.”
"I think there are some owners who probably feel that they would do better if the entire season was lost so they could put more money in their pocket. I think the damage that would be done to the game would be insurmountable and I don’t think we would recover from it," said Billy Hunter.
“I think they want to break us. I think they want to break us. I can’t say it any louder than that. They have to break us if they’re planning on running the table. They have to break us.
Hunter gives you that warm and fuzzy feeling, doesn't he?