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NBA Lockout: Players' Union Denies David Stern Offered 50-50 Revenue Split

At the conclusion of Tuesday's negotiations between the NBA's owners and players' union, David Stern told the media during a press conference that he had approached the union about a 50-50 split of revenue, which the players had rejected. It was an informal offer, Stern said, but a potential framework for a deal, and a sign that the owners were willing to budge from previous demands to end the lockout.

While an offer may have been made, sources tell's Chris Mannix that it wasn't quite a 50-50 split, and that officials within the union resent Stern's decision to discuss it with the media:

While admitting a private offer was made -- an offer NBPA executive director Billy Hunter did not acknowledge during a news conference -- union sources dispute the NBA's numbers. According to multiple sources, the offer was for a guarantee of 49 percent of the BRI with a max of 51 percent. Still, union representatives took the offer back to the group. A short time later, they countered with a proposal for a guarantee of 51 percent of the BRI with a cap at 53 percent. That offer, sources said, was rejected.

Union officials were furious that Stern publicly disclosed the offer. Some believe it was put out to drive a wedge between the union, which thus far has been largely represented by veteran players making mid-seven- or eight-figure salaries. And in some ways, it had that effect. Three role players told via text message that, while needing further details, a 50-50 split sounded fair.

Attempting to find common ground and seeding dissension are two completely different things -- and yet Stern has apparently managed to do both at the same time.