You might not know it based on the negative headlines, but the new NBA labor deal is actually pretty close to being done.
The deal is about 95 percent complete, reports Howard Beck of The New York Times. Even though talks have broken off multiple times, most of the pieces have fallen into place. But that last 5 percent is threatening to take away the rest of the 2011-12 NBA season.
The final fight is over league revenue. The players and owners are reportedly fighting over approximately $4 billion with the league wanting a 50-50 split and the players wanting 52.5 percent.
The difference is about $100 million, which is a lot of money, but in the grand sceme of the negotiations, it is relatively small. At one point, the two sides were divided by 20 percent and hundreds of millions.
The players, who last season earned 57 percent, have already agreed to a harsher luxury tax, shorter contracts and smaller raises. They have made concessions on most major items in the new collective bargaining agreement.
The final deal is expected to heavily favor the owners but the players will gain an easing of trade rules and relaxed regulations on restricted free agents.