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Thursday, September 15th, 2011 at 9:25 am  |  16 responses

Lakers Owner Jerry Buss in Favor of Hard Salary Cap, Revenue Sharing?


According to the OC Register, Jerry Buss is on board (and probably not by choice) with other NBA team owners to have a hard salary cap and revenue sharing within the next Collective Bargaining Agreement. And that’s potentially bad news for the Los Angeles Lakers’ future: “Although cash can’t buy championships (see Knicks, New York), there’s no disputing how high the Lakers’ payrolls have been as they’ve been winning lately. Kobe Bryant’s league-high $25 million pay aside, Buss is set to spend $34 million next season on Pau Gasol and Andrew Bynum – and then another $9 million on Lamar Odom just to back those two up. NBA commissioner David Stern went so far as to invoke the Lakers’ name Tuesday in explaining why owners are entrenched in getting a hard cap from the players during collective bargaining. ‘A team like the Lakers with well over $100 million in payroll and Sacramento at 45, that’s not an acceptable alternative for us,’ Stern said. ‘That can’t be the outcome that we agree to.’ As much as Buss loves his rum and Coke, he has held a Molotov cocktail with the NBA’s limited revenue sharing and soft salary cap. It has allowed Buss and his minority investors to make a lot of money and feel comfortable spending a ton of it on great players others can’t afford. But dramatically increased revenue sharing will inhibit the Lakers’ spending. A hard cap will flat-out prevent the Lakers from spending. It’s lose-lose when Buss is 77 years old and determined to come from behind the Boston Celtics in total championships, 17-16. Yet the Lakers have accepted it. Why? For the greater good. And you can’t play in a league of your own anyway. However much he leads his unfettered, playboy lifestyle – his latest summer vacation to enjoy was through Europe – Buss is married to these other NBA owners, for better or worse. So with their days of shopping alone on Rodeo Drive ending, the Lakers intend to go out gracefully – and loyally to Stern, for whom Buss has always had an appreciation. The many specifics of revenue sharing still need to be worked out – and progress is expected on that front Thursday in the NBA’s board of governors meeting in Dallas – but Buss is fully accepting that his pockets will be where most of the grabs go. He’s hopeful the revenue-sharing system leaves him some protection, but wherever the details of the sharing and capping go, Buss considers himself – bottom line – a team player on the owners’ side.”

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  • http://cnbc.com JTaylor21

    Revenue sharing sounds like a great idea but I still don’t understand the need for a hard-salary cap. Baseball continues to thrive without a hard-salary cap or any salary cap at all, so I don’t see why the NBA can’t do the same.
    People love to talk about there being parity in the NFL, which is BS. Over the past decade it’s the same teams at the top (Colts, Pats, Ravens, Steelers and Eagles), every now and then, a team like the Packers and Bucs surprise folks but a majority of the time, it’s those aforementioned 5 teams that are on top. The NBA should not try to duplicate the NFL’s model because it’s a totally different game with different circumstances and a much larger fan base.

  • Ricky

    This post makes it seem like the Lakers have an advantage in money but when you compare the net worth of the various owners, Jerry Buss would probably fall in the middle of the pack. As a matter of fact, the Lakers were lucky to sign the TV deal with Time Warner cable. Without it, they would have had to sell the Lakers.

    A hard cap gives the Lakers an advantage because everyone will have to offer the same contract but only one is located in Southern California (and for a storied franchise).

  • LA Huey

    I can understand the owner’s reluctance to revenue sharing to a point. Why would the Lakers, Bulls, and Knicks want to effectively subsidize Charlotte, New Orleans, Sacramento? But really, LA, Chicago, and NY should just consider the formers their farm teams. I lived in KC for a minute and know the Royals were exactly that to the Yankees and Red Sox.

  • http://www.slamonline.com UNFROZEN CAVEMAN LAWYER

    DAMMIT HUEY, WHY DID YOU HAVE TO BRING UP THE ROYALS?? YOURE RIGHT THOUGH.

  • http://Slamonline.com Caboose

    Jerry Buss: The Bizzarro World version of Donald Sterling.

  • bull22

    i would hate for my team to lose players because of a hardcap and revenue sharing, but if will allow other teams to compete for a title evenly and equally iam all for it. but the problem is if this change is made and the heat star players get grandfathered in, then its a bad idea…

  • http://www.slamonline.com UNFROZEN CAVEMAN LAWYER

    HEY BULL, WHAT ABOUT THE LAKERS? BULLS? MAVS? THUNDER?

  • bull22

    @unfrozencavemanlawyer, neither of those teams has anything like the heat bro. bulls-only derrick rose produces on a consistent level, lakers only a two headed monster in bryant and gasol, thunder- has only a two headed monster in durant and westbrook. you go beyond those players on each respective team they would not be able to lead a team out of the cellar.
    but iam sure the three teams you mentioned will lose key supporting players.

  • LA Huey

    Bull, would you be saying the same thing about the grandfathered contracts if Chi managed to sign 2 of Miami 3 last summer?

  • jayb

    i am all for rev sharing especially since the big market teams have their own networks anyway. have the revenue share but no need for a hard cap..if the big teams go over soft cap like the yanks pay the lux tax. what is the issue.i hate the dan gilberts of the world. he bought a team in cleveland …sorry! all is not created equal. this aint an eastern block country. no one told him to p[ay a mid tier player 50 mil. no one put a gun to his head! lets get a deal done. if we lose preseason..who cares!!!!

  • bull22

    @lahuey, i would see you point if i actually wanted any of those players in chicago, the only one i was hoping we would get was bosh until he made the dumb statement i want to be the cornerstone of the franchise, i was never high on lebron and wade and i know you know this because i said they would not win nba title this season.. true chicago fans know that winning a title is a long and ardous process. NO SHORTCUTS (SEE MAVS AS EXAMPLE)

  • LA Huey

    @Bull, to your first point:I find that hard to believe. Moving on, no shortcuts? (Please refer to ’08 Celtics)

  • http://www.bulls.com Enigmatic

    I find it hard to believe too. There were plenty of Bulls fans who didn’t want LeBron, or at least said they didn’t.
    But who didn’t want Dwyane Wade? Hometown guy coming back home to form the illest backcourt in the L? Come on now.

  • bull22

    @lahuey and @enigmatic, you both have valid points. the celtics are the exception and i can only attribute what they did as incredible coaching and teamwork because never seen anyone pull a turnaround like that before. (very rare, 26 years of basketball and i only seen it done once. yeah its hard to believe i was not high on james or wade (never thought he was that serious about the bulls anyway, when you are around riley, you will pick his deceptive tricks) i always had confidence in rose since day one and i always felt that he did not need another star player this early in his career to hinder his development and iam not only chicago fan who felt that way…

  • http://www.bulls.com Enigmatic

    Nah, you’re right. There were plenty others who felt the addition of an established star would hinder Rose’s rise. But the vast majority wanted at least one of the big free agents.

  • http://thetroyblog.com Teddy-the-Bear

    Everyone says they wouldn’t have wanted LeBron and/or Wade on their favorite team. It’s all a load of crap. Lakers and Bulls fans would have built LeBron and Wade a statue if either of them went to their favorite teams…

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