NBA Lockout: Players Wanted System Issues, Willing To Meet Owners On Revenue Split

Matt Bonner, the San Antonio Spurs' sharpshooting forward and a member of the players' union's executive board, told Mike Monroe of the San Antonio Express News that in NBA lockout talks on Saturday, players had been willing to compromise their position on the revenue split if the owners would concede on some key salary cap system issues.

The owners were unwilling to do so, talks fell apart and NBA commissioner David Stern issued an ultimatum.

For Bonner, it was a lost opportunity.

"That's what we were hoping would get a deal and we really thought the approach we took was going to get it done. But when [federal mediator] George [Cohen] came back after taking our offer to the owners, what he came back with was five or six changes in system things, and all but one were what the owners wanted. It was basically their deal."

The salary cap system issues that remain at play include the mini mid-level exception for luxury tax teams, the ability of tax-paying teams to use the sign-and-trade, and escalated penalties for teams over the tax line multiple times in a five-year span.

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