Jared Dudley has built a reputation for being one of the more outspoken players in the NBA, as he is honest and will give his opinion on anything that is asked of him.
For example, Dudley came out and said the Los Angeles Lakers have the most chemistry of any team he has ever been on and currently more than any other group in the league. That kind of statement is bold, but he has not been one to sugarcoat things.
In regards to the coronavirus (COVID-19) pandemic that put the 2019-20 NBA season on hold, Dudley has repeatedly said there needs to be ample time to train and proper safety protocols in place before players feel comfortable returning.
Meanwhile, in appearance on Spectrum SportsNet, the veteran also explained why players who may not be as eager to return should be aware of financial ramifications:
“If we do not play, and there is no season, that means the TV money from Disney and ESPN, they don’t have to pay that money. That money then gets taken away from the BRI, which is the Basketball Related Income that sets the cap number. So if that money is not in there. The following season with no vaccine, and that money not being in there, that cap of being able to pay $120 million for players, goes down almost in half, if not 40%.
“So that 120 goes down to what, $70 million? So now you have to form a Lakers team, a Bulls team, a Phoenix Suns team under $70 million where everyone’s salary gets cut in half. So my thing is this, If they say for safety reasons we can’t play this season, I’ll be the first one to understand it.
“But then what’s the difference next season? There is no vaccine coming guys, so we have to be able to do safety now, the same way this year we will next year. I tell them there’s financial ramifications. There’s the league, they can force majeure, which means they can cancel the CBA and do a whole new one.”
The NBA has several national television deals that it relies on for basketball-related income, so if games are ultimately canceled then the league misses out on that revenue which directly affects things like the salary cap. Less BRI means less money for free agents, so the motivation for wanting to return is an obvious one.
However, the league has been adamant that they will not bring games back until they have a clear-cut plan, so players and fans will have to continue to wait on a decision. Furthermore, NBA commissioner Adam Silver reportedly has not decided how he may handle teams already out of the playoff picture.
Of course, Silver could borrow a page from Dudley and remind all players of the financial implications ahead.