Friday, November 4th, 2011 at 2:15 pm  |  68 responses

Michael Jordan, Other Owners Refusing Anything Less Than 50% of League Revenues?

Things were already going to be inevitably tense at this Saturday’s NBA labor meeting, but now, the tension and bad blood promises to be off the charts. The NY Times reports on Michael Jordan (*cough cough*) and other team owners who will not back down from the 50/50 BRI split, no matter what: “A faction of 50 N.B.A. players is threatening to dissolve the union if it compromises further on player salaries. The league is facing an equivalent threat from a trenchant group of owners, who are vowing to oppose any deal that gives players more than 50 percent of revenue. The owners’ faction includes between 10 and 14 owners and is being led by Charlotte’s Michael Jordan, according to a person who has spoken with the owners. That group wanted the players’ share set no higher than 47 percent, and it was upset when league negotiators proposed a 50-50 split last month. According to the person who spoke with the owners, Jordan’s faction intends to vote against the 50-50 deal, if negotiations get that far. Saturday’s owners meeting was arranged in part to address that concern. A majority of the 29 owners are believed to support a 50-50 deal, but they are reluctant to move further. ‘There’s no one who’s interested in going above 50 percent,’ said the person who has spoken with the owners.”

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  • manu

    jordans a greedy little piece of s

  • http://dodgers.com Joey E.


  • Jeff

    I’m sorry but I just don’t see how the players who are the whole reason for revenues should get the same amount as the owners? Just offer the players 51 or 52% and let’s move on. It’s still a huge increase from having 43% before.

  • LA Huey

    Jordan’s competitive streak wants to crush the opposition more than he cares about what actual figures are. I say Gilbert’s his Pippen. Who would be Kukoc or Cartwright in this dispute?

  • Heals

    MJ, Mj, mj. I get why, but that doesn’t mean it still isn’t a weak move. Looks like we need to add a new Jordan to the classic Gatorade commercial; Bobcats owner MJ. He doesn’t have same lift, range or first-step, but don’t be fooled cause he’s more cutthroat than the UNC, Chi and DC versions. I wonder what Chi or DC Jordan would think of Bobcat MJ’s way of doing business…

  • Kent

    Michael Jordan u supposed to be for the players, man. What da hell wrong wit u? U were fighting on the other side (Players) years ago and understand what was going on and u know most of the owners are asking for to much. Owners would rather ruin the game for their own personal gain. I believe even David Stern wanna slap the F outta some of the unreasonable owners.

  • http://www.optimabbc.be Max

    Damn MJ, doesn’t he allready make like more than 1 mil a day?

  • http://slamonline.com nbk

    Huey, probably Sarver & the Maloofs. — Stern is Reinsdorf.

  • Mo

    Funny Tweet by an NBA writer: Michael Jordan to Abe Pollin (Wizards owner) in 1998 negotiations: “If you can’t make a profit, you should sell your team.” MJ to players in 2011: “Bail us out!”

  • http://www.nba.com Gman

    They should get 50% its their teams, players dont advertise themselves with money do they? Im sure they dont fly themselves with their money either.

  • http://www.twitter.com/nflem41 Nicolas Fleming

    In my mind, I just punched Gman.

  • http://cnbc.com JTaylor21

    Aight guys like Bron/Wade/Kobe/Howard/Rose/etc. should go to another league and let’s see how many fans come to watch MJ smoke a stogie in his luxury box. The NBA wouldn’t be sh*t without star players to attract the public’s money.

  • bike

    Tit for tat, tit for tat.
    Players threaten to decertify, owners won’t budge.
    Now it ‘aint nuthin more than a grudge.
    Players want 52, owners say no.
    Players scream “we ‘aint no ho”.
    Season on the brink, nba down the sink.
    Headed for the fridge, pour myself a long drink.

  • http://www.slamonline.com Cheryl

    You know what? F^ck it, I’m going to watch college ball until March and then find some other sport to fall in love with. F^ck ‘em all!

  • Heals

    Mo Money!!!


    @Mo, too funny! MJ should sell the Bobcats man.


    The hardline “woe is me” small market teams need to be made an offer they can’t refuse by a federal judge.

  • shaolin23

    wow…mj dont make enough money from dwade, melo and cp3..i would be ticked if i were them!! mj makes a ton off of retros..concords drop in dec..stop being a grinch!! i know the ex took you to the cleaners but you were a player once..what the heck! your in charlotte not chicago…get real !!!

  • http://www.gil1906.com Pve_2

    Ha the reference to the 1998 CBA was nice.

  • bike

    Awesome Cheryl!

  • DieselMechanic

    Just like his playing days Mike always tried to shoot for > 50%.

  • Mo

    The problem I have is that MJ was saying the same sh** back in ’98 that the players are saying now. But “NOW” he’s singing a different tune. And I understand why because he’s an owner now. But the rules don’t change for you (MJ)just because you switched to the other side now. Especially when the players have come down from 57% of teh BRI to address the majority of the owners losses.

  • http://slamonline.com nbk

    Jordan has barely owned the team for ONE YEAR. Why is he allowed to spearhead a movement of change? You BOUGHT INTO THIS situation. Plus and I quote “If you can’t make it work economically, you should sell the team.” – Michael Jordan. and fin

  • thecomputerdude

    What’s funny is they wanted MJ to say something but now that he has he is a jerk now…lol. People are funny….smh

  • http://slamonline.com nbk

    no it’s that MJ is a complete hypocrite and obviously only interested in his own benefit, rather then what is fair.

  • http://www.needforsheed.com JP NEWTON

    I think if he had a superstar on his team he would sing a different tune

  • http://cnbc.com JTaylor21

    No more buying Js. Well…I won’t go that far, after the 3s and 11s drop, I might think about it.

  • http://www.slamonline.com Cheryl

    I’m really not surprised. Dude is a competitor, he just plays for the other side now. 50/50 ain’t “winning”.

  • Mo

    Another MJ quote from ’98 lockout: But perhaps the best waffle in Jordan’s stack can be found in a quote published in August 1995 in the Chicago Tribune. MJ and the other decert club members lashed out at David Stern’s bad deal.

    “All [Stern] has to do is evaluate the deal he has proposed to us from a player’s standpoint,” Jordan said. “He wouldn’t recommend that; he wouldn’t accept that deal from a business standpoint so why would he ask the players to do that?”

    And on the subject of fighting for the younger players, the future of the league, MJ?

    “I can see Clyde Drexler, I can see Charles Barkley, I can see David Robinson and I can see all these stars saying, `Great, it’s a good deal,’ ” he said. “Yeah, it’s a good deal for us–for the superstars. But for these young players who are going to move forward and make this league and make the game of basketball as popular as it is today, it’s not a good deal for them. That’s why we’re making this stand.”

    My, how one’s assets dictate one’s interests.

  • matt

    go look up jordan’s salary before chicago pissed him off by trying to get rid of phil and scottie. He was getting paid 4 million in his PRIME, but making a great deal of money off of endorsements. He is about the players, but he’s also a business man.

  • http://deweynortonmba.wordpress.com/ nbk

    He made 35 million dollars his last season. spare me

  • jake

    I support the owners in this. There’s no reason a player should get a bigger share of revenue than the owners.if you are a great player, you’ll get endorsements. Maybe, the players should learn how to budget their money. They wouldn’t have to worry about going broke then. Live within your means!

  • LA Huey

    Maybe, the owners should learn how to manage their teams. They wouldn’t have to worry about operating at a loss then. Operate your business within your means!

  • http://cnbc.com JTaylor21

    You do know that there are more than 300 players in the NBA, right? Those guys have to divide up their slice over 300 ways while the owners have to divvy up their share only 30 ways. People that support the owners are funny because there’s no logic behind their reasoning.

  • @Deknowz

    I say WE-as in WE the people who BUY the tickets, jerseys, sneakers, league pass lock the owners out! The owners are being tyrants and the players are acting like children-but atleast they’re actually trying to NEGOTIATE. I’ve never gone to an NBA game to see an owner play. Most people didn’t know Dan Gilbert’s name until he started crying that LEBRON JAMES left town. MJ just doesn’t want to lose, but this isn’t a game. His ego drives me crazy!

  • EJ

    Players need to go play in another league. It’s not like NBA is great cause it’s the NBA, they just have the best players. Now that they don’t want to pay them, go play in some other league and that league becomes the best. Simple. No need to start a new league like Amare said.
    Would be a good way of telling the owners that you’re not their b*tch.

  • clos1881

    I dont see why anyone should be suprised MJ has always been a selfish asshole. I remember when people were getting robbed and shot for Jordans I never heard mike say anything matter of fact he RAISED the prices lol Mikes all about the bottom line that benefits himself the players are the bread winners I dont even know half the owners in the league.

  • Groves

    i’m keen for some basketball related competition. come on owners! D-fence, D-Fence!

  • jayb

    pretty lame!! i agree with jtaylor21…take away bron, wade, kobe, drose, durant, and a few others…what is the nba…yeah its the d-league!!!! i know mj wants to make some coin but dont he make enough from swoosh..wtf?? give the players 51.5 and lets get the ballin rollin…no pun intended!

  • O

    It makes perfect sense that MJ wants as much of the BRI as possible. I mean seriously, who the hell WANTS to sign with the Bobcats? They’ll sign cause they’ll have monster cap room, but you’re in Charlotte and the name is kinda wack (Bobcats) – sounds like a college team at best. MJ knows he’s going to lose money for the foreseeable future. So he might as well stick it to the players now. Sad to be honest. You’d think he’d show SOME loyalty to the group he once fought for. At least support a 50/50 take. But nope.

  • Blakos

    Tension at Jodan brand meetings now?

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

    Jordan is such a douche he won’t even change the name of the Bobcats–who were named after Bob Johnson. You know what that tells you?
    Even Bob Johnson isn’t as big of a douche as Jordan.

  • Jake

    My logic is in the fact that without the teams to play on, the players have nothing. Does my company give myself and my fellow employees a 60-40 split of our income? I WISH! I’d be a millionaire by now. In essence, the owners are trying to create a more realistic work environment by taking down inflated salaries, and obviously the players aren’t happy with it. If I was being overpaid for the last 10 years and someone came knocking at my door to tell me that they were knocking my wages down I’d be pissed. But, like I said in the first place, the players need the teams. There will always be enough talent to fill spots vacated by whoever doesn’t want to deal with lower wages. Would you as an NBA player rather make 2 million dollars at home with your family or 500,000 dollars overseas in a country where you know no one? Fans might not forget about KG,LBJ,DWade and Kobe but they WILL forget about Stephen Jackson, Jerome James, Travis Outlaw, Hedo Turkoglu, Chris Mihm, Eddy Curry, Austin Croshere and the gaggle of other players who have made WAY too much money. Sure, a lot of the blame needs to be left with the owners for making bad financial decisions but the agents and players need to be blamed to. Idiots that only play hard when it’s time for a new contract and then slack off when the second, third or fourth year of that contract comes. Do you think MJ enjoys having to pay Desagna Diop 8,000,000 bucks to be a fat waste of space on the end of his bench? Does that make any sense to anyone???? NBA contracts should be Based upon performance and non guaranteed. You play bad, you get paid less. You play good you get paid more. Case closed problem solved.

  • http://myspace.com/gametimeweezy Gametimeweezy

    ***please dont bring MJ into this.. the greatest PLAYER ever is not to be trashed like the current “OWNERS” …thats not a fair assesment***

  • Exile

    Don’t agree with all Jake’s logic, but for someone (JT) to state that there is no logic behind supporting the owners is wrong. All these arguements are based on a sense of entitlement within a business construct… Support who you want (I tend to lean towards the owners)but realize that both sides are largely “right” when they make a stand based on their own needs. Emotional one-sided arguments can only hurt this process.

  • Justin

    It is absolutely amazing how many moronic statements are made on this site. So, because Michael Jordan makes a bunch of money with his other endorsements and the Jordan brand he’s not entitled to get as much out of this as he can also? Are you guys serious? It’s BUSINESS! Do you think the other owners around the league only own their team and don’t make money elsewhere? Since a lot of players make millions off of endorsements I guess they should be asking for less too right? And once again JTaylor, I’d say your reasoning has no logic. You say the big names should go play in another league? You realize of course if they did that then they wouldn’t be making nearly the money they do now right? These players wouldn’t be sh*t without the NBA either

  • slamnation

    cosign Jake


    Charlotte Bobcats<Charlotte Jumpmen
    Just sayingthey need a name change

  • Heals

    Whitlock is just killing it right now. Head over to Foxsports and take pleasure in Jason roasting his airness. One of the wealthiest players ever and possibly the most inept at personnel decisions ever turned Benedict Arnold (sp?). I lived in Chi-town leading up to the first Bulls run, so I don”t wanna say it, but Kobe would never pulls this shht in same position. Looks like I’m rocking LRG instead of Jumpman for a bit…

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

    @ Jake: And why do you feel the players are in the wrong when even you “wish” YOUR company gave a greater share of its profits to workers (and rightly so)? Who told you the idea of workers determining their own fate and actually–gasp!–owning a stake in their companies was unreasonable or unjust or unrealistic?

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

    Okay, I do agree with you that players who under-perform and are thus overpaid can be a nuisance to the league. And I understand that if a regular employee were to under-perform, they’d likely be fired or demoted.
    Keep in mind though, that in the NBA the players ARE the product. The NBA is just a brand name. Think about it this way: if Apple were suddenly to disappear off the face of the planet, what would happen? People would buy from other brands. But they’d still be buying the same (or similar) product–ie. tablets, smart phones, etc.
    Also, they’d probably come to appreciate other brands more because iTunes rips you off and doesn’t actually give you full “ownership” of the music you download… but that’s another story. lol.

  • Heals

    Jake please explain how your job resembles that of an NBA Player as well how the company you work for resenbles the NBA. I have no idea what you do, but doubt that there are enough parallels to make the comparison accurate. MJ shouldd’t have agreed to Diop’s deal t begin with, so what now? We already covered that NBA contracts don’t have to be guaranteed, if you don’t know that by now you shouldn’t be commenting as such. Jake I’d flip your comment around and say the teams are nothing without players. If you disagree feel free to watch AAU teams in NBA uni’s all you want. Wouldn’t be shht huh, Justin if you feel that way say the commentors names so they have a chance to defend themselves…

  • http://slamonline.com Allenp

    The problem with performance based contracts is determining good performance. Do you use star or team success? Either one means certain players will get shafted. Do you have owners decide r players decide if they me expectations? Use third party arbitration?
    Pay as you go works in the NFL because the owners don’t have to pay if you overperform. They just have the ability to cut you if you suck.

  • VanCityBBall

    anybody else notice that the only side giving up a little bit of way are the players? first they tried sticking to 57, then they went down to 53 and now 52.5… its not “negotiating” if only one side is willing to bargain

  • Jake

    Teddy, there is a difference between wishing and actually thinking it’s going to happen. Would I start an uprising if I was an NBA player making 6,000,000 a year to play a game? Hell no I wouldn’t. The owners are the ones putting their financial futures on the line for 30,40 years at a time when they are responsible for putting a marketable product on the floor year in and year out.

    Heals, A job is a job. Pay structure is the same almost everywhere. The head of a company gets the biggest cut of the pie( Steve Jobs, Bill Gates, Donald Trump) so and and so on. How it is dispersed beyond that is dependent on the company. MJ agreed to Diops deal because he believed that Diop had the talent to succeed in the NBA, which is what almost every contract is based off of these days instead of the players previous body of work. That needs to change. Also, I’ve been watching the NBA since the 80′s. There are always more stars out there waiting for their chance. One crop of overpaid, under-performing players isn’t going to turn the NBA into a forsaken wasteland. Do you really think Bob Cousy, Wilt the Stilt, Kareem, or any of the old legends feel bad for the players? NO, because they remember what it was like to make pennies on the dollar, ride to games on buses and sleep in a Motel 6 with some mice as roommates. A good majority of the players these days have adopted the Latrell Spreewell mentality, screaming “I got kids to feed!!” As they sit in their brand new Bentley, in a $20,000.00 suit. Spare me. My initial and overall point is that the workers of a company don’t get to and shouldn’t be able to decide how that company divides it’s earnings, as we are seeing now.

  • Heals

    Exactly Allen, Hunter brought his up. He said since the owners wanted player accountability for underperformance in the form of giving back salary that’s fine. With that though he said that players who were overacheiving should have an equal right to outside arbitration and of course the owners wanted nothing to do with the whole concept then…

  • Heals

    Jake – appreciate the response man, but we just see things differently. I asked for examples and you gave me a job is job. Do your place of business have a TV contract, are you part of union, what’s your pay structure in comparison to your fellow employees, do people pay to see you perform you job, are there other jobs (with their own employees) dependent upon you performing your job at certain places at a certain time, do people wager on the outcome of your companies performance versus another, is your business in marketing contracts with other businesses, are you featured in advertisements for your profession and company, do you perform charity work for your company, can you be traded to a competing company, does the media cover your job performance and for any major publications or outlets, does your company monitor and possibly punish your actions outside of the workplace? Please don’t simplify the situation…

  • Heals

    And MJ believed incorrectly in Diop’s ability (and Morrison’s, and Kwame’s, and MattCarol’s and not in Rip Hamiliton’s, and Gerald Wallace’s,). His punishment is less cap flexability, a poorer performing team, less fan interest in the franchise and thus less revenue generated. His reward shouldn’t be that player concede below 50-50. You claim to watch the league since the 80′s and use Latrell and an example for your average NBAer. Latrell is an exception in it’s most extravagant form and you must have forgotten how cocaine alomost ruined Pro-ball in 80′s. Their not deciding how the “company” divides it’s earning their fighting to maintain stake representative of their contribution to that “company.” Regardless though you got a POV and we are better off for you sharing it…

  • Heals

    If anything the “stars” of today are the antithesis of everything you hate. The league is closer to it’s Gloden Age now than it has been for years. I think your still refering to the mid to late 90′s funk of oevrpaid underachievers (KAnderson, VinBAker, Antoine, any tall white center). Kobe is grinder, KD a gym rat, CP3 a life source of a city, DW3a stuntman, LBJ the embodiment of what is and can be, DHoward the lovable giant, DRose the windy city savior, BGriff the Daredevil, The New3 and RR reenergizing and once dead franchise. I dunno man if you can’t get on board with this crew it’s your loss…

  • Jake

    Alright, if Spree is an extravagant exception…how do you explain Stephon Marbury, Steve Francis, Jalen Rose, Larry Hughes, Eddie Jones. They were all wild complainers that complained their way into getting exorbitant contracts. I’m not saying that the players don’t deserve their fair share, BUT I am saying that a 50/50 split is more than fair. If you think it would be good for the NBA to give more than that to the players, look at the NHL. How many of those franchises are floundering year after year because the players are making 55,56, even 57% of the revenue brought in by the league? It leaves less money for marketing, which leaves less room for the league to grow and attract new fans. 5% might not seem like a lot, but when you are talking in terms of billions, its a big chunk of change for the owners to give up. I’d rather have under-paid players than a bankrupt NBA.

  • Jake

    Oh and here’s some more food for thought…Kobe is the only one worth writing home about on the entire list. If these guys made half of what they do now it would enable the teams to attract more solid talent and expand their fan base, increasing revenue.

    Michael Redd, MIL 252 $3,712,735 $18,300,000
    Rashard Lewis, WAS 144 $6,961,039 $19,573,711
    Gilbert Arenas, ORL 172 $5,914,274 $17,730,694
    Eddy Curry, N/A 493 $913,154 $11,596,822
    Peja Stojakovic, DAL 248 $3,800,181 $14,034,483
    Vince Carter, PHX 121 $7,958,008 $17,522,375
    Kobe Bryant, LAL 7 $15,450,923 $24,806,250
    Andrei Kirilenko, UTH 90 $9,531,563 $17,823,000
    Troy Murphy, GS/BOS 263 $3,484,494 $11,657,324
    Kenyon Martin, DEN 102 $8,888,593 $16,545,454

    Being realistic, do any of these guys deserve nearly that much money in accordance to their level of play?

  • Heals

    Nope, none. But who signed them, where’s their accountability? Other than Bryant, from the first day those contracts were signed those players had no chance of living up to them. I can just as easily list several players in their rookie deals that are grossly overperforming their deals, so where does that get us? NBAPA offered amnesty cluases for teams which would allow all the contracts mentioned above to be erased from their books, but the owners declined. The fact that Kobe is the only player of the ones I listed that you deem worthwhile says alot (to me) about your interest in the game as a whole. That’s 6 players (we both know you could have gone on longer) over a maybe a 7-8 year span (so somewhere around 45-50 players out of 2,400+, I’ll take that percentage). Once again totally agree that the NHL’s financial restructuring has greatly benefited the leagues viability, but the NBA is on a different level. The TV contracts are with bigger networks and for much more money(The NHL still can’t get every Stanley Cup final game on NBC). Look at any list rating the financial worth/marketability of athletes and you’ll not only see many more NBA Players, but the gap in earnings (from advertising/marketing not salary) between them and their NHL counterparts is significant. I agree no one wants a bankrupt league, but I believe 52.5-47.5 will achieve that. Even you have to agree if 50/50 was cool 2-3 days ago then why is it necessary for a minority group of owners to now push for 47-53 at the highest? Props on the back and forth…

  • Jake

    Haha no problem, a friendly argument is never a bad thing. I do agree about the owners being idiots at this point…it’s almost like seeing school children fight. The fact that the best mediator in the history of mediation quit means bad bad things. I just hope the L comes back soon, so we can get back to arguing about the things that matter, like who’s dunk should have been number 1 in the top 10 on ESPN.

  • Yesse

    If MJ was still playing, i bet he wouldn’t think like this.

  • http://www.slamonline.com Cheryl

    Capitalism sucks.

  • @Deknowz

    @Cheryl- I agree, but it’s a double edged sword…

  • Heals

    Good place to leave off Jake. Now there’s something we can both agree on…

  • aj

    Why do people keep saying that players are the product so they should receive a huge chunk of BRI? The fact that they are paid MILLIONS, have their healthcare taken care of, and can make money from endorsements is enough! They should receive some of the BRI, but 50/50 is a fair offer. In what other occupation could they make as much as they do in the NBA?

    You can’t keep referring to the 57% split that they received from the previous CBA. It was extremely player friendly and not a good business model. The owners are guilty of signing outrageous contracts, but the market dictates what the going rate is for players. It’s just like buying a home in California per se. You know an outdated ranch home is not worth $975K, but if you want to continue to live in California, you pay what the market dictates.

    Owners have an obligation to keep their franchises competitive. If they dont pay a player a certain amount, they will sign with a different team and the team gets a reputaion of being cheap and no one wants to play for you. SO yes, the owners are guilty of being stupid for making the market this way, but how can you fault them for trying to correct the mistakes they made and keep the NBA viable?