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NBA Lockout: A look at what lies beyond Saturday's tentative agreement

WHAT'S NEXT — There's still court appearances, a re-certification and votes by both sides ahead before the NBA can get back to playing basketball.
By JOHN ROHDE, Staff Writer, Published: November 26, 2011

* Once all issues are settled, a vote is taken. For approval, it requires simple majority from both parties. There are approximately 435 players and 15 of the 29 league owners (the NBA owns the New Orleans Hornets) must vote "yes." Stern said it could take 3-7 days before this vote occurs.

* If the new CBA is approved by players and owners, training camps will open Dec. 9. The free agent process will begin the same day and teams will be able to sign players. Opening day will be Dec. 25. "We're optimistic that will all come to pass, and that the NBA season will begin on Christmas Day with a tripleheader," Stern said.

Key points to the tentative agreement to end the NBA lockout

NBA owners and players have reached a tentative agreement to end the 149-day lockout and plan to begin the delayed season on Christmas Day.

Here are some highlights:

* The deal: Largely completed around 3 a.m. EST Saturday, then announced. More details still must be tackled including dismissing all pending lawsuits, making the National Basketball Players Association an actual union again and voting by both the players and owners to ratify the agreement.

Key dates: Dec. 9 (free agency opens, camps open), Dec. 25 (games begin).

Owners' biggest win: Reducing the players' guarantee of basketball-related income to no higher than 51 percent after they received 57 percent under the previous collective bargaining agreement. With each BRI point worth about $40 million based on last season's revenues, that's a swing of at least $240 million annually, erasing most of what owners said were $300 million in losses last season.

Owners' biggest loss: The NFL style hard cap and non-guaranteed contracts they sought. The system is in fact similar to the old one, just with harsher luxury tax penalties to limit spending.

Players' biggest win: The preservation of the midlevel exception — though in a reduced form — and various trade rules for teams over the luxury tax, keeping the biggest market teams in the running to bid for them, even if they can't pay as much as they used to.

Players' biggest loss: Money. They're transferring more than $1 billion in salary and benefits to owners in the first six years of the deal.

What's next: Look for talks early this week on a preseason schedule, the dismissal or settlement of pending lawsuits, then movement toward getting the entire CBA written.

The Associated Press

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