During yet another controversial meeting between the NBA owners and players union, three arbiters made a dramatic plea for the two sides to stick together for the kids. The owners and players seem further apart than ever, and the arbiters feel the relationship falling apart altogether. “Clearly things have hit a breaking point,” said union rep and Lakers point guard Derek Fisher. “How can we still be together, let alone in the same stadiums as these people? Do you know how betrayed we feel?” The owners also adamantly refuse to apologize. “Apologize? Us? Know what it’s been like dealing with them for years?!” The children, Kyle, Jackson and Leslie, 11, 8 and 4, respectively, were in ear shot of the owners who immediately grabbed their mouths. “We didn’t mean that guys.” Jackson ran out of the room while Kyle blamed himself.
The arbiters showed the two sides photos from their inception over 50 years ago, their young trysts with the ABA as young adults, the highs of the 80’s and Jordan era, and even the rough times from the ’99 lockout. “It was certainly emotional,” said arbiter Ray Cole. “But we aired it all: the good and the bad. Hopefully they’ll remember there are three little guys at home who need them.” The children have been quite the afterthought in this whole process. Kyle speaks mostly for the children, who have long sought higher salaries as well as increased competitive balance. All three are young and confused and not sure whom to side with.
The players union firmly stick with their stance the children should stay with the NHL for a while. “NFL just got through some things, so no need to mess with them. The NHL is having a few difficulties and could use a distraction.” When asked if MLB was an option: “Those guys? Think their too good for everyone. We know what happened in ’94 even if they pretend it didn’t!” The owners think sending the kids to the NHL is a bad idea and cancelled another week of games as a result.
– Mike Sweeney