First and foremost, I wanna apologize to the 4 people who like reading my On The Fritz posts for not posting the last 2 weeks. I know that might be an exaggeration but thanks for the continued support Mom, without it I wouldn’t be here writing an ignorant blog post about the inevitable NBA Lockout. The fact that the NBA Players Association is still (still) fighting for money is no longer annoying, it’s down right stupid. I used to respect Derek Fisher, I really did, and as much as I love the thought of Delonte West working at Home Depot, I can’t just stand idly by while this lockout becomes a reality. I MUST ADDRESS THIS ISSUE TO THE 4 (2?) OF YOU!
Hit the jump.
The basis of all of this is that the players don’t understand that the NBA isn’t just a giant ATM that’s here to support their entire extended families and childhood best friends extended families. No sir it is not! It’s a business, and in order for a business to run it has to function like one. Let’s try to break this ATM-state-of-mind by running through some shitty illustrations I did to show Derek and sheepish pro athlete friends why they need to shut the hell up about how much money they’re making.
Bearing in mind that the NBA is a business, let’s compare it to more simple business. A carwash. God damn I’m glad I don’t work at a car wash anymore like I did when I was a kid.
Theo Joe works at the car wash. It sucks. He makes like $5 an hour and on some days when it’s not raining he has to actually get off his ass and put cars through the tunnel. It’s much less fun and lucrative than flying around the country hooping in front of 10′s of thousands of people every night, but that’s beside the point. The car wash is a business that was put in place by the owner of it to A) Make money and B) Brag about at the country club.
In owning the car wash (or any business, including an NBA team), the owner has expenses, and paying Joe his $5 an hour is just the beginning of it. He has to pay for things like soap, electricity, sexual harassment lawsuits, taxes, and plenty of other bullshit. All these things cost money, and if the owner can bring in more money than all these things cost him… he’s profitable! Yippee. What a novel concept.
Assumptions are dangerous, but so is speaking out about things that you’ve done little or no research on (like this), so let’s make a few:
- All the car washes expenses, including paying Joe, come out to $100 per day.
- A car wash costs $10.
This means that in order for the car wash to break even, that is bring in enough money to pay all its expenses, it must wash 10 cars per day. If the car wash only washes 8 cars, the grumpy old owner has to reach into his pocket to pay Joe for that particular day. This could happen from time to time and that’s fine, but when it happens over and over again, this is known as “operating in the red”. If you don’t know what that means, it means this:
If the car wash owner continually doesn’t bring in enough revenue to pay his employee and all his bills, then he should probably make a change. He has to figure out how to make his business break even by cutting costs and/or increasing revenue. Lucky for Joe, the owner can’t pay him less than minimum wage. On the other hand, if the car wash can’t break even, it’ll probably have to close. It’s not because Joe is a bad guy, or isn’t skilled, or doesn’t work hard (though it certainly could be for any of those reasons), it’s just because the money isn’t there.
Just like the car wash, every NBA team is a business. It earns revenue, has expenses, and is a business. Fortunately for the players who aren’t as resourceful as Delonte West, having to take a pay cut doesn’t mean earning less than minimum wage. It means that they’ll have a little bit less money sitting in their bank accounts, and in exchange they’ll still be able to continue earning said money.
Anybody who knows me knows I’m not a huge sports fan. That being said, I do like basketball and am particularly fond of putting on a Whiskey jacket and walking down the street to catch Blazer games every now and then. Pull it together NBA.
Special shout out to the moron agent who wrote that letter telling the players to hold their position on the matter. I guarantee that guy was the Team Manager who just wanted to be cool in High School.- Landforce