Mid-October is the rare time on the calendar where nearly every sports fan can help themselves to a piece of the pie.
The baseball playoffs are nearing the Fall Classic.
The NFL is one month old.
College football is beginning to separate the BCS contenders from pretenders.
An NHL puck is being dropped at arenas around the country.
As of today, the only fans being locked out are those of the NBA.
Earlier this week Commissioner David Stern announced the cancellation of the first two weeks of the regular season.
Thursday, TNT basketball analyst Charles Barkley painted a much darker picture of the season.
TNT analyst Charles Barkley on ‘Big Guy on Sports’
“I told people last year I didn’t think they would play at all this year,” Barkley explained to Brad Cesmat on “Big Guy on Sports.” “Unless they give the owners what they want, they’re not going to play, period.”
Barkley insisted the Commissioner is intent on protecting the league and keeping the NBA balanced.
“David Stern is trying to do what’s best for the small-market teams,” Barkley told Cesmat. “Two years ago we were held hostage by the LeBron James situation. Last year it was Carmelo (Anthony). You already heard all last year ‘where’s Chris Paul going?’ ‘Where’s Dwight Howard going?’ Stern’s not going to let that happen. That’s why he’s the best commissioner in sports.”
With the season in jeopardy, many players have signed contracts overseas, while others, like Knicks All-Star Amare Stoudemire, have hinted at creating their own league.
“We can’t just sit around and do nothing,” Stoudemire explained. “So we just have to figure out ways to continue to play basketball at a high level against top competition. So, that’s the next step.”
The always out-spoken Barkley says this concept doesn’t stand a chance.
“That’s one of the stupidest things I’ve heard…right up there with new Coke,” he said. “That’s not going to work.”
As for the lockout, Stern said the players and owners are nearing a crossroad and if a deal isn’t struck by early next week, he doesn’t envision any games before Christmas.
Before the work stoppage, the regular season was set to tip off November 1.
–Some other notes from Charles Barkley’s conversation with Brad Cesmat–
[Kevin] Kolb is adjusting to the system and the lock-out hurt the NFL. It has been a long time since we’ve had this many season ending injuries…but I am a Kevin Kolb fan, just give him a chance. Fans have become so brutal. Be a little patient. You have arguably the best wide receiver in football. I love football.
[Obama in 2012]…we are going to win. Not many guys can beat us. I was a big Chris Christie fan, but he has decided not to run. And Sarah Palin would be good eye candy.
“The one thing that separates me from these other idiots. I am a man and going to make mistakes. I’ve made mistakes and will make them, but that is when you find out who your friends are.”