Sources: NBA, players association close to new CBA

NBA commissioner Adam Silver is working to keep labor peace. (Getty Images)
NBA commissioner Adam Silver is working to keep labor peace. (Getty Images)

After a Wednesday meeting in New York, the National Basketball Association and National Basketball Players Association have pushed close to a new Collective Bargaining Agreement, league sources told The Vertical.

NBA commissioner Adam Silver and NBPA executive director Michele Roberts have led negotiations over several months and now have moved the league to the cusp of a new multiyear CBA of labor peace, league sources said.

The owners and players believe a finalized deal is inevitable within the next few weeks, with sides already agreeing upon most of the major issues in the deal, league sources told The Vertical. There are still talks left on smaller provisions of the CBA, league sources said.

The NBPA will need its players to ratify a new deal, but union player leadership is eager to sell the rank-and-file on the terms of a deal that’s nearly complete in its negotiations, league sources said.

The NBA and its union will avoid a possible work stoppage in 2017. The NBA and NBPA have the ability to opt out of the current 10-year deal on Dec. 15, but a new agreement will be in place before then, league sources said.

The NBA’s 30-something stars – including NBPA president Chris Paul, vice president LeBron James and executive committee member Carmelo Anthony – will benefit from the changing of the 36-and-over rule that now prohibits players from signing a five-year maximum contract if their 36th birthday occurs within the life of the deal.

The NBA and union have tentatively agreed to change the rule to over 38, league sources told The Vertical, which would have significant financial implications for superstars in the twilight of their careers.

Among the principles in agreement, the NBA’s Basketball Related Income (BRI) split will remain unchanged in a new agreement, league sources said. The players receive a share in the range of 49 to 51 percent of the current BRI.

The NBA will raise rookie-scale, veteran minimum and free-agent exception deals in the new agreement, league sources said. Rises in those salaries could come in the 50 percent range over current numbers, sources said.

The NBA will keep its “one-and-done” rule with college basketball, retreating on its original desire to make college players wait two years after high school graduation to become eligible for the NBA draft, league sources said. Two-way contracts between the NBA and NBA Development League will offer teams the chance to add 16th and 17th roster spots, and pay players differently based upon their assignments in either the league’s minor league or as part of the parent team, league sources said.

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