FanPost

Over / Under on the lockout?


I'm going with 4 1/2 games. I think that puts the owners in a position of strength, but also that they'll start losing some of that strength if they move beyond that. 

It's been my long-held belief that the owners won't get serious about negotiating until they feel they're negotiating from a position of strength. My perception of the previous CBA is that the owners (particularly Mike Brown and Ralph Wilson) felt that they gave away too much, because they were negotiating in fear of disrupting the offseason and losing the salary cap. It doesn't take a genius to figure out that you're never going to get a good deal on anything when you're negotiating out of fear, or your back's against the wall - have you ever bought a car after your existing one got wrecked and you had to have one ASAP? I have, and let me tell you, it's not fun. the next time I purchased a car, I was much better prepared, took a lot longer to look for a car, and got a much better deal.  Everything the owners have done since then has helped keep them from getting into that sort of position again: Shedding the salary cap this season without over-spending on players, trimming personnel and cutting costs, negotiating a TV deal that ensures some revenue during the lockout, etc. The way the owners leverage the strength they've built will be to put some hurtin' on the players, and that's not really going to happen until they start losing game checks. I'm sure they'll talk a good game about finishing a CBA in time for training camp, but think about it this way: Why would they not execute a strategy they've prepared for so carefully, and which seems likely to be an effective one at that? It simply doesn't make sense from the owner's perspective to not at least try carrying the lockout into the regular season, if only to see if they can't get a better deal than whatever the players put on the table during the offseason.

 

That said, I think 4 games is as far as the owners will take it. negotiating from a position of strength is great, but you've got to know when to back off and not push it too far. once you get into the regular season, the fans get pissed off, the PR could potentially swing to the player's side, and you start losing viability for playing an abbreviated season. 4 weeks would leave time for a 12-game season - you could still squeeze in all of your divisional and conference matchups, leaving a level playing field for all teams to make the playoffs. 

Anyhow, That's my own personal wild-@ss guess - what's yours?

This is a Fan-Created Comment on MileHighReport.com. The opinion here is not necessarily shared by the editorial staff of MHR

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