Fast Break Thoughts: Still No Progress…

Phillip Barnett —  September 22, 2011

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Today, the Owners and Players Association met again today, and as Adrian Wojnarowski said in the tweet above, not a lot of progress has been made. While this news isn’t particularly good, it seems as if there was something in the 5 and a half hour meeting that prompted both sides to meet again as early as next week. At this point in time, there aren’t a lot of details surrounding the details of what went on in the meeting, so we’ll have to wait for reports to surface for the time being.

If you haven’t checked out already, ESPN’s 5-on-5 discussed the lockout and how it affects both Kobe and Lebron.

The Wages of Wins’ Devin Dignam takes a look at the Pau Gasol v. Juan Carlos Navarro Eurobasket MVP debate in two posts.

Navarro’s teammate Pau Gasol was clearly the best player in the tournament. In addition to being tops in terms of total wins, Gasol was also the most efficient player (as measured by EWP/40) in the entire tournament. The fact that Gasol lost out to his teammate is a travesty. But overall, the all-tournament team did pretty well. Of the five selections, the only one I have an issue with is Navarro. Which isn’t too bad – it’s not like he won the MVP or anything.

Hoop Speak’s Beckley Mason presents a 1999 lockout chronology timeline.

Brian Windhorst of the Heat Index explains how some teams, most notably the Heat, can take advantage of an amnesty clause if such a clause (which is expected) should be in the new collective bargaining agreement.

For months there has been speculation that a new CBA would contain such a clause, which was first used as part of the last CBA deal in 2005. It’s a mechanism to help phase in new rules and create a bridge for teams who are stuck with bad contracts. Six years ago it was used to help teams avoid a more penal luxury tax. The highest profile player to be released was Michael Finley, who the Mavericks waived to save more than $30 million in luxury-tax payments at the time.

This week the Portland (Ore.) Oregonian reported that there’s a consensus among owners to include another amnesty clause in the new CBA that would help clear space in what are expected to be more restrictive salary caps. Of course no one can predict the future but the signs continue to indicate the new deal will have some sort of amnesty option in it.

Kelly Dwyer of Ball Don’t Lie reports that Yao Ming is still doing humanitarian things despite hanging up his sneakers.

Yao is asking his fellow countrymen to stop eating shark fins, and while his words may not make much of a dent in changing a centuries-old Chinese tradition, this is a very good thing. Because the practice of securing shark fins is a terrible, terrible thing.

Shark fin soup is considered a delicacy in China, and though the price of a fin can be more than exorbitant, that doesn’t stop the massive consumption of the dish. A dish that, frankly, is more show than substance.

Phillip Barnett

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