NBA Scraps Early Start of Upcoming Season

Posted October 10th, 2011 at 11:45 pm (UTC-5)
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The National Basketball Association has cancelled the first two weeks of the 2011-'12 regular season, after franchise owners and players failed to settle their dispute over a new collective bargaining agreement.

The league announced the cancellations Monday after a seven-hour negotiation session in New York. NBA Commissioner David Stern told reporters the two sides are so far apart on the issues that “we just have a gulf that separates us.”

The owners are calling for shorter player contracts, a firm salary cap and a bigger share of annual revenues. They recently offered the players' union an even split of revenues.

All games between November 1 and November 14 are being scratched, including the opening day contest between the Chicago Bulls and the Dallas Mavericks, the reigning NBA champions. The dispute could threaten the entire 82-game regular season, as well the growing popularity of the NBA, which enjoyed record television ratings and revenues last season.

A similar stalemate over a collective bargaining agreement cost the NBA 50 regular season games during the 1998-'99 season.