If you want to see Derrick Rose and the Bulls take on Dirk Nowitzki and the defending NBA champion Mavericks on Nov. 1, you'll have to fire up a video game.
That delicious matchup — as well as all teams' regular-season games from Nov. 1 to 14 — were wiped off the schedule late Monday, casualties of a lockout that could get uglier by the day.
When a seven-hour negotiating session failed to bridge significant differences over a new collective bargaining agreement, Commissioner David Stern canceled those games and warned any future negotiations with the players association would have "to account for the losses we are incurring."
Along those lines, Stern said owners have dropped a proposal from last week's talks offering players a 50-50 split of basketball-related income to 47 percent. Worse, Stern and Deputy Commissioner Adam Silver said Monday's session centered on system issues such as the salary cap, luxury tax, contract lengths and annual raises, and "a gulf" separates the sides on all.
"We remain very, very apart on all issues," Stern told reporters in New York. "With every day that goes by, there will be further reductions on what's left of the season."
For now, the Bulls lose the season opener in Dallas, a Nov. 2 game in New Orleans, the Nov. 5 home opener against the Hawks, home games Nov. 8, 10 and 12 against the Clippers, Thunder and Kings and a Nov. 13 road date in Washington. Season ticket holders will be refunded with interest.
Though the schedule will be redone now that games have been canceled, the Bulls' website currently shows the team opening with the difficult annual "circus trip" in Portland.
That's as cruel as Monday's events making the 2011-12 season just the second in league history to lose regular-season games to labor woes. In 1998-99, 50 of 82 games were played.
"It's disappointing," Bulls swingman Kyle Korver said.
Korver said he planned to attend a regional players association meeting Thursday in Los Angeles. Stern and Billy Hunter, executive director of the National Basketball Players Association, said no further negotiations are scheduled.
"I continue to believe that we've been more than fair and reasonable in our approach," NBPA President Derek Fisher said.
Beyond the major differences on system issues, the union also is seeking 53 percent of league-related income. Players received 57 percent under the previous collective bargaining agreement. Dropping their take by 4 percent, players would give back roughly $160 million to owners who claim that 22 of 30 teams lost a combined $300 million last season.
Stern said any future cancellations would come in two-week increments. This represents a pay cycle for players, who typically receive their first paychecks Nov. 15.
Most observers speculate the league would need three weeks from the time an agreement is reached to prepare for the regular season. This would involve lawyers signing off on the deal, players voting for it, a hectic free agency period and a brief training camp with possibly an exhibition game or two.
All of that seems miles away after Monday's events.
"Everybody's waiting for the players to cave," Hunter told reporters in New York. "I'm saying that's going to be a horrible decision."
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First 2 weeks of NBA's regular season canceled
All games scheduled from November 1st through November 14th are canceled
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