One thing to remember
Everyone seems to be forgetting something: Some of the players are close to being broke. They live paycheck-to-paycheck, just like many of us do. When they start losing paychecks - their first check is Nov. 15, I'm told - that's when this is going to hit home with the players.
This time last week, the tone of the negotiations changed. Their was optimism. Maybe the NBA season would start on time. Then they met this week and that optimism went down the dumper.
Some players - no names please! - are starting to freak out. They need money to survive and continue to live their lavish lifestyle. There's a lot of money at stake. The owners want to prove their point and make sure they get the upper hand.
That's why there's a good chance games will now be lost. The owners better be sure they know what they're doing. Public opinion is not necessarily on their side.
Many agents think the players' best course of action is to decertify. Union head Billy Hunter said he's not even thought about decertification. Why hasn't he? Observers say if the players decertify, Hunter will lose his job.