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NBA Lockout: Billy Hunter Urges Union To Stand Firm In Letter To Players

On the very night that the NBA season was originally scheduled to start (the Cavaliers were slated to start Wednesday night in Boston), NBA players’ union executive director Billy Hunter sent a letter imploring members to stand strong and united.

Hunter lashed out specifically against David Stern’s negotiating tactics:

“We will not be intimidated by public threats, ultimatums and manufactured drop-dead dates. We will stand firm in our resolve to negotiate a fair deal for our current membership and those who will join our ranks in the future,” Hunter said.

Basketball-related income remains the chief dealbreaker, and Hunter outlined specifically why he refuses to accept the supposed half-and-half deal of 50/50 that the owners have proposed.

“By comparison, we received 50 percent of total revenue under the previous CBA, and our 53-47 proposal would reduce the player share to 46.4 percent of total revenues,” he explained. “In addition, compared to our former 57-43 split, the owner’s proposed 50-50 shifts more than $300 million per year to the owners, which equates to more than $3 billion over a 10-year deal,” Hunter explained.

You can read the full text of Hunter’s 1,225-word letter to the players here.

Photographs by spatulated, Triple Tri, and chrischappelear used in background montage under Creative Commons. Thank you.