Matt Moore of CBSSports.com on things that should get you pumped about next year: “Let’s start with the Thunder. Durant will have had the entire lockout to stew over that playoff loss, to struggle with the first real failure of his professional career. He and Russell Westbrook will either align agendas and form some sort of altered version of Jordan-Pippen or they’ll explode in some sort of Marbury-KG inferno. Harden is the third piece, ready to take over the third wheel function and complete the Big 3 for OKC. They’re still young, Perkins will be healthier, and they’ll still be young.”
Tracy Graven of HoopsHype on if small markets can even survive a lockout: “OKC’s unemployment rate is one of the best in the nation; of course, that’s before an extended lockout will cost people their aforementioned jobs. They are in the Top 15 at only 4.9 percent. Those who normally reap the benefits of Jazz games are the next closest to Oklahoma City in unemployment rate at No. 98.”
I read the comments on my CBSSports.com piece on a hard cap and small markets. I don’t think I’ll do that again.
The Thunder underpays their players? No, not in a real sense, just in terms of the Thunder gets the most bang for their buck.
J.A. Sherman of Welcome to Loud City gets into the lockout discussion: “Given that the new owners bought their respective teams knowing that 1) a lockout was likely; and 2) a new deal was a primary facet of their acquisition, why on earth would they capitulate to the players’ demands after only a few months? I’m not arguing that the owners are right or wrong in their position, but if you examine the question from viewpoint of their primary self-interest, they’ve already taken into account the cost of a lost season and are ok with it, if in the end they achieve their desired goal of a new deal.”
One Philly writer doesn’t have much sympathy for either side: “I don’t care about the numbers. You’ve got multimillionaire players fighting with multibillionaire owners over how to equitably divide billions of dollars in profits. With the majority of Americans struggling to enjoy the basic necessities of life and maybe have an occasional indulgence, like a family vacation, I couldn’t care less who wins this fight. When it is all said and done, the owners are still going to be multibillionaires and the players are still going to be multimillionaires. Excuse me if I still see that as a win-win situation for both sides.”