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NBA AND ITS REFS STILL AT AN IMPASSE
Published October 24, 1995
Negotiations between the NBA and its refs "remain at an impasse," according to today's N.Y. TIMES. The sides have not met since October 12, and as of yesterday, no new sessions had been scheduled. If a new agreement is not reached before the regular season opens November 3, the league plans to continue using two-man replacement crews of college & CBA refs (Clifton Brown, N.Y. TIMES, 10/24). THE DETAILS: The sides are "far apart." Under terms of their last contract, first year refs earned $68,000/ season, with salaries increasing to $177,000 for those refs with 24+ years in the league. The NBA refs want the range increased to $82,000 for rookies in the first year of the deal, with that introductory salary increasing to $112,000 by the final year of the deal. Refs with 20+ years would earn up to $304,000. The league has countered with a 10% across-the-board salary increase this season, followed by 5% increases across the board for the remaining years of the deal. NBA General Counsel Jeffrey Mishkin: "We feel the referees deserve a salary increase, but we can't do what they're asking." Agent Fred Slaughter, who is representing the refs: "We've budged three times on our proposal. The league has not budged yet. Meanwhile, the integrity of the game is being threatened" (N.Y. TIMES, 10/24).