David Stern left the owners' NBA lockout offer -- what amounts to a 50-50 revenue split, the creation of a second, smaller mid-level exception for teams over the luxury tax and a restriction for sign-and-trades for teams over the tax line -- on the table until Wednesday. If it is not accepted by the players' union, the league will drop its offer to 47 percent of revenue for players and what amounts to a hard cap.
Reports from Saturday suggested that a majority of players may be willing to accept a 50-50 deal. But union president Derek Fisher told reporters after talks broke down Saturday that he would not be presenting the NBA's offer for a vote. Why? TrueHoop's Henry Abbott explains, with help from union lawyer Jeffrey Kessler:
Kessler explains the reasoning for the mechanism is because no union wants to let employers address workers directly. You don't want your opponents to have direct access to your constituents. The fully informed committee has an obligation to keep bad deals from the rank and file, who have entrusted the process to them. This protects players from accepting an offer that might sound good to them, but would, in the judgment of those who have analyzed it most thoroughly, actually be bad news.
Despite this, expect fans and some players to agitate for a vote before Wednesday. Whether they'll get it is another matter entirely.