Lockout sees NBA postpone camps and cancel preseason games

The National Basketball Association (NBA) lockout made its first major inroads into the sport’s calendar on Friday as the league postponed training camps indefinitely and axed 43 preseason games.

Ahead of the lockout the players’ union (NBPA) reduced its counter proposal to 54.3%, the equivalent of $100 million per year of additional revenue to the owners over a five-year term. However, with NBA commissioner David Stern having warned that the league will make a $300 million loss in the 2010-11 season, the two sides were still $7 billion apart in their demands over a 10-year CBA.

Friday’s news sees the cancellation of all games scheduled for October 9-15, while the training camps were set to begin on October 3. “We have regretfully reached the point on the calendar where we are not able to open training camps on time and need to cancel the first week of preseason games,” NBA deputy commissioner Adam Silver said in a statement. “We will make further decisions as warranted.”

The league dropped the remainder of its preseason schedule on October 6 in 1998, when the regular season was reduced to 50 games due to the NBA’s last work stoppage. This remains the only time the league has lost regular season games and commentators indicate that agreement on a new CBA will be needed by the middle of October if the new season start date of November 1 is to be retained.

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