After NBA lockout talks broke for Rosh Hashanah on Wednesday, NBA commissioner David Stern told reporters that this weekend -- when sides will resume negotiations -- represents a "key moment" for the league. From CBS Sports' Ken Berger:
"There are enormous consequences at play here on the basis of the weekend," Stern said [...]. "Either we'll make very good progress, and we know what that would mean - we know how good that would be, without putting dates to it - or we won't make any progress. And then it won't be a question of just starting the season on time. There will be a lot at risk because of the absence of progress."
It's unclear if the mere cancellation of games is what Stern is warning players about, or whether he's implying that if the sides don't reach an agreement to preserve the scheduled Nov. 1 start of the regular season, the owners' proposal will become more draconian and painful to players.
More than a dozen of the league's team owners and a group of players including All-Stars are slated to join the talks on Friday. Traditionally in these talks, the larger the group negotiating has been, the less progress has been made. Let's hope that pattern changes.