Employment Contracts and the NBA

What happens when employees can’t negotiate their own employment contracts? You could potentially lose a whole N.B.A. season. For months now, owners and players have been negotiating a new labor deal to satisfy various concerns raised by members of the National Basketball Association.

On October 27, 2011, negotiations seem to be looking more promising. The N.B.A. is hopeful that they will be able to have a full 82-game season schedule, despite starting the season a month late. In the event negotiations are not completed soon, the game schedule could be reduced as was done back in the 1998-1999 season, which season only contained a 50-game schedule.

The current pre-season has been completely cancelled and if the negotiations end soon, the regular season would begin December 1, 2011 and continue until sometime in April, 2012 to secure the full 82-game schedule.

Employment contracts protect the players’ interests as well as the interest of the owners, and negotiations aim to satisfy all parties involved while allowing for players to move freely between teams and to allow teams to be able to hire top players in order to compete favorably in the market.

After hours of negotiations and many hours ahead, the future of a favorite American sport will depend on employment law issues.