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ARE NBA OWNERS SET TO RE-OPEN CBA IN MEETINGS ON MONDAY?
Published March 20, 1998
NBA owners will vote Monday to "void the final three years" of its CBA, "setting the stage for a potential lockout at the end of the season," according to officials cited by David Moore of the DALLAS MORNING NEWS. The league's Board of Governors will officially meet in Dallas on Monday, and each of the league's 29 teams received the report by the Labor Relations Committee appointed by NBA Commissioner David Stern. The 17-page document "strongly recommends the owners exercise a trigger clause" to re-open the CBA and the "owners are expected to embrace that recommendation." League officials have "canvassed clubs" on the vote and "indicate that at minimum of 21 or 22 teams" will vote to re-open. A simple majority of 15 votes is required to re-open (DALLAS MORNING NEWS, 3/20). NBPA Exec Dir Billy Hunter told USA TODAY's Greg Boeck that he expects owners to vote to re-open the CBA: "This doesn't come as a surprise to me" (USA TODAY, 3/20). WHAT THEY WANT: On ESPN SportsZone, David Aldridge writes that league "[p]eople I've talked to in the last couple of weeks don't sound like they want to crush the union or force huge player concessions. They sound like businessmen who want to make a deal that's good for them. But not one that's horrible for the players." Among issues owners "have to have relief on" include reducing the percentage of income spent on players salaries; redoing the rookie cap and three-year contract for draft picks, and modifying the 20% rule where salaries rise a maximum of 20% over the previous season (ESPN SportsZone, 3/18).