The NBA's "increasingly determined pursuit of an Upper Spending Limit" has been the No. 1 issue in their recent collective bargaining agreement negotiations with the NBPA. With the two sides nowhere close to a new deal, there will likely be an extension of the December 15th deadline for either side to opt out of the current agreement.

The league does not appear to be using the Upper Spending Limit, which is effectively a hard cap, as a negotiation tactic in order to gain concessions in other areas.

There is belief that a new system is needed for competitive balance.

"There will be a lockout before there’s a hard cap," one sources on the players' side told Marc Stein in October.