The NBA and the National Basketball Players Association expect to finalize terms on a new collective bargaining agreement “just after Thanksgiving” or in “early December.”
Adam Silver and Michele Roberts have “a relationship built on mutual respect and trust,” said a source — and that respect has gone a long way. Both sides also agreed early on to keep the Basketball Related Income split the same, with 49 percent to 51 percent of the share going to the players.
While the split will remain the same, the players have done a better job in expanding the definition of BRI.
They “went through the couch cushions,” said a source, “and found a number of areas where owners in the past were able to keep some parts of revenue out of BRI.”
Revenue from things like luxury suits for non-NBA events wasn't included in BRI.
“The union has effectively argued those things belong in BRI. They’ve expanded the definition,” said the source. “So in addition to the game just growing overall, they’ve increased the pie themselves.”
NBA players received 57 percent of BRI before the 2011 lockout, but with a bigger pie, and changes to the BRI definition, the end result is roughly a $1.7 billion increase for the players, according to a source.
If the players’ union argued for 52 percent or 53 percent, “they wouldn’t then have gotten the extended definition of BRI,” said a source. “The union probably got their way on 70 to 80 percent of the issues.”