April 2020 Basketball Wiretap

NBA Could Allow Private Equity Firms To Buy Stakes In Multiple Teams

Apr 30, 2020 9:05 PM

The NBA is considering creating an investment vehicle that would allow private equity firms to buy limited partnership stakes, including investments across multiple teams.

It has become increasingly difficult for owners to sell limited partnership stakes due to the increase in valuations of professional franchises.

Limited stakes frequently come without a board seat or any real influence on how the franchise is operated. There's typically what's referred to as an LP discount of 10 percent to 25 percent.

Major League Baseball changed its rules last year to allow investment funds to acquire limited partnership stakes in multiple clubs.

Scott Soshnick/Sportico


NBA Players Agree To 25 Percent Reduction For May 15th Paycheck

Apr 17, 2020 3:17 PM

The NBA and NBPA have agreed on a withholding of 25 percent of each player paycheck beginning on May 15th.

The deal gives a gradual reduction in salary should the Force Majeure provision be enacted with the cancelation of the remaining regular season games.

Players will receive their May 1st checks in full. 

Adrian Wojnarowski/ESPN


NBA, NBPA Agree To Extend Moratorium On Transactions Indefinitely

Apr 10, 2020 2:08 PM

The NBA and NBPA have agreed to extend the moratorium on transactions indefinitely, sources tell Shams Charania of The Athletic.

This impacts contract agreements, trades and options for both players and teams.

Many players and teams have trigger dates that will be moved back to accommodate the NBA's suspension of the 19-20 season.

Shams Charania/The Athletic


NBA, NBPA Want To Avoid Financial Damage To 20-21 Season

Apr 9, 2020 3:42 PM

While the NBA wants to finish out the 19-20 season in whatever manner is available to them due to COVID-19, they also don't want to averse impact the 20-21 season financially.

"What about next season? What are you willing to do about next season? Because Adam (Silver) has several times, including his talk with Ernie Johnson this week, he mentioned about how he wants to protect next season," said Brian Windhorst on his podcast.

"In reality, guys, I mean I've talked to people who point this out to me: the NBA can restart this season whenever they want. If they had to wait until October and just restarted at the normal time and picked up where they left off from last year and finished the season at Christmas. And said 'okay, now we're going to have an abbreviated offseason and we're going to start again in the spring and play until the fall'. If they were willing to change their calendar a little bit, or have a very brief offseason. They could do it. There's nothing stopping them from doing it. But that would dramatically impact that season.

"Also, you could cut next season short. You could trim off some games to fit all into the calendar. But the fact that, at least until this point, Adam has made the point they don't want to affect next season backstops what the league can do this year.

"Now, where is that line of demarcation? Is it September 15th? Is it August 31st? I don't know. Nobody knows, really. But that's an important thing.

"When the union and the players, and they're going to come to an agreement most likely in the next week here on salaries: what they're trying to accomplish is to make a deal where the players give up salary and limit the damage to this year, so that the salary cap doesn't collapse next year. They're already making attempts to put up a wall to protect next season. Those are really important factors nobody is thinking about.

"And if you're an NBA player, okay, and I'm not saying that the owners of the Bucks or the owners of the Clippers or the owners of the Lakers are thinking this way, but if you're an owner of NBA team X who is not in the playoffs and you know that your team is not going to make the playoffs, or your team is not going to compete for the championship and you're not going to get any more revenue this season, you're not going to sell any tickets. You're going to have to refund all those things. There's not going to be any playoff money to you."

"There's playoff TV money," replied Tim MacMahon.

"Yeah, but the TV money could be guaranteed," said Windhorst in response.

Brian Windhorst/ESPN

Tags: NBA, NBA Misc Rumor, NBA CBA

NBA Players Will Receive Full Paycheck On April 15th

Apr 9, 2020 12:53 PM

The NBA and its 30 teams will send full paychecks to players on the next payment date of April 15th.

The NBA and NBPA have been negotiating withholding a percentage of salaries for players for upcoming paycheck dates. The league would keep a percentage of salaries based on canceled games.

The next payment due to players is on May 1st.

Shams Charania/The Athletic


Adam Silver Believed To Have Faith, Trust Of Entire NBA On Handling COVID-19 Decisions

Apr 9, 2020 12:00 PM

Adam Silver is believed to have the faith of the NBA's owners, executives and players in how he is handling the league's response to COVID-19.

"Let me say a couple of things that have come through as I've talked to people: coaches, players, executives, other wings that I will not say, but let's just say from top to bottom in the league," said Brian Windhorst on his podcast. "Number one: there's an incredible amount of support and trust and belief in Adam Silver. From the star players down to lower level employees to referees. They really do believe in him. 

"I've heard this time and time again: Adam will not let us comeback until we know we're safe.

"I'm hearing the same thing," said Jackie MacMullan.

"His equity within the league is excellent. And he's gotten a lot of credit for shutting the league down. I have sort of begrudgingly kind of.. He didn't have a choice. He had to shut the league down. A player tested positive and I want to point out that there were municipalities that had said 'no fans are going to games', yet there were fans in NBA arenas that night. So to say that the NBA was ahead of the curve is not really accurate. The Ivy League and the ATP tennis tour were ahead of the curve.

"Nonetheless, he did shut it down and showed good leadership in doing so. He didn't mess around. He shut it down and set an example for many other leagues to follow. But people value and trust in his leadership immensely.

"And so number one: he can use that to his advantage because I think people will follow in what he says, but he has to be very careful because they're trusting him and I think that's going to cause him to be very cautious."

Brian Windhorst/ESPN


NBA Proposes Players Take 50 Percent Pay Cut Beginning April 15th

Apr 3, 2020 4:15 PM

The NBA is proposing players take a 50 percent paycheck reduction beginning on April 15th.

The NBPA has counter-proposed a 25 percent reduction of paychecks starting in mid-May.

Players received their scheduled payment in full on April 1st, but it has been unclear how the NBA and NBPA would proceed for future payments.

The NBA has a Force Majeure clause in player contracts that they could trigger due to the COVID-19 pandemic. 

Shams Charania/The Athletic


NBA Could Withhold 25% Of Players' Remaining Salaries If Season Gets Canceled

Apr 1, 2020 1:31 AM

The NBA and the National Basketball Players Association are discussing several financial outcomes should the rest of the regular season be canceled, league sources told Adrian Wojnarowski of ESPN.

Up to 25% of the players' remaining salaries could be held in a league escrow if the season ends without any more games.

Players would lose 1% of their salary for every canceled game based on a force majeure provision written into the collective bargaining agreement, which includes pandemics.

Adam Silver and Michele Roberts are discussing how the likely cancellation of scheduled games would impact a percentage of lost salary for players.

If there is no agreement between the two sides on withholding players' salaries, player would receive a full paycheck on April 15th. Players would be required to pay back a portion of that paycheck under current CBA guidelines should games be missed.

The NBA has no current plans to cancel the season. 

If the league were to enact the force majeure provision, it would also give the NBA 60 days to reopen and renegotiate the current CBA.

The NBA has no interest in exercising this option, according to ESPN. 

Adrian Wojnarowski/ESPN