HIGHTOWER: The NBA's Unsportsmanlike Conduct

Let's go to the Sports Desk [sports theme] for Hightower Radio's "Wide, Wide, Wide, WILD World of Sports!"Today's feature: a double-dribble foul by the National Basketball Association, in which the billionaire owners and millionaire players are killing the sport. After years of jacking up prices on everything from ticket prices to front-office overhead, the average fan has been priced out of actually going to a game, leaving the arena to front-row celebrities and skybox corporate clients.The greedhead owners, reaching for even more of the rich NBA pie, have tried to put a slick move on the guys who actually play the game, demanding a bigger slice for themselves at the expense of the players. The playersÜBig Surprise!Üsaid "no," so the owners have proceeded to shut down the games, locking out the players.Fine. Who cares about the squabbles between billionaires and millionaires? But wait [referee's whistle]!There are real working people whose jobs and economic security are being trifled with hereÜthe people who service the games: the beer man, the cheerleaders (who get maybe $75 a game), the ticket takers, the waiters in those skyboxes, the janitors who clean-up afterwards, and all the others in and around the arena.Then there are those outside the arenaÜbartenders at sportsbars, makers of T-shirts, taxicab drivers, restauranteurs, and so many more who literally are cut off when games are eliminated. Learning of the lockout, Sy Gottlieb in Boston said, it "brings tears to my eyes." Not just because he loves the sport, but because he owns parking lots around Fleet Center, where the Celtics used to play.This is Jim Hightower saying . . . The NBA owners have magnanimously refunded money to the wealthy elite in the skyboxes who are missing games they paid for . . . but what about those workaday folks who rely on the income they make from servicing the games?

Enjoy this piece?

… then let us make a small request. AlterNet’s journalists work tirelessly to counter the traditional corporate media narrative. We’re here seven days a week, 365 days a year. And we’re proud to say that we’ve been bringing you the real, unfiltered news for 20 years—longer than any other progressive news site on the Internet.

It’s through the generosity of our supporters that we’re able to share with you all the underreported news you need to know. Independent journalism is increasingly imperiled; ads alone can’t pay our bills. AlterNet counts on readers like you to support our coverage. Did you enjoy content from David Cay Johnston, Common Dreams, Raw Story and Robert Reich? Opinion from Salon and Jim Hightower? Analysis by The Conversation? Then join the hundreds of readers who have supported AlterNet this year.

Every reader contribution, whatever the amount, makes a tremendous difference. Help ensure AlterNet remains independent long into the future. Support progressive journalism with a one-time contribution to AlterNet, or click here to become a subscriber. Thank you. Click here to donate by check.

DonateDonate by credit card


Thanks for your support!

Did you enjoy AlterNet this year? Join us! We're offering AlterNet ad-free for 15% off - just $2 per week. From now until March 15th.