This is a letter I've written to express my concerns about the ongoing labor negotiations. It was great to put all of my frustrations onto paper (so to speak). I suggest others do the same as it seemed to me to be the best way to let the league know that we're upset with what's going on. Who knows, maybe someone will actually read them. I've already sent a copy to the league office but if anyone has any other recommendations of where i could send/post.email it, it would be greatly appreciated.
Dear Commissioner Stern and the NBA,
As a long-time fan and supporter I am sincerely disappointed in the behavior that both you and the Player’s Union have shown over the past months. I am a fan that is not currently living in my team’s city, yet I have gone out of my way every season to watch the games. Whether it is at a sports bar or through League Pass, I have done everything I can to catch all of the games. I even try to make it to a few games every season even though I live several hundred miles away. I feel I have done everything a fan can do to show support for a sport he loves, emotionally and financially. So I feel hurt, frustrated and taken for granted when you and the NBPA can’t agree on how to split up the billions of dollars a year that you take in from people like me. I know it’s a much more complicated situation than what I’ve made it out to be, but I think you get my point. I understand, even sympathize with the situation from both perspectives. At the same time though, your petty arguing is affecting so many more people than just you. A family friend of ours owns a business at my city’s NBA arena where he depends on the games to make living and until the lockout ends he’s going to be out of work. The owners and players may be able to survive the months that it might take to get a deal done, but not everyone is lucky enough to be in their position. I wouldn’t feel so betrayed if I thought that both sides were trying their very best to make a deal, but that doesn’t seem to be the case. It reminds me less of a business negotiation and much more like a divorce. From the offhanded accusations both parties have been making, it feels like this is more about hurt feelings than it is about money. It is not professional and it hurts the reputation and professional integrity of both sides. It’s okay to be angry with each other, normal in fact, but bringing these accusations and insults to the public is detrimental to not only the talks but to my respect for the NBA and the NBPA. When this lockout eventually ends, chances are I will continue to watch games and support my team but I don’t think I’ll ever have the same respect that I did before this lockout. I am truly sorry that you can’t seem to reach an agreement and I hope one is reached soon. Since I have no representation in the ongoing negotiations this is the best way I can think of to have my voice heard.
Sincerely, Jesse F.