NBA, players finalize new Feb. 8 deadline for CBA opt-out

NEW YORK (AP) — The NBA and its players now have until Feb. 8 if either side wants to opt out of the current collective bargaining agreement, after the league’s board of governors on Wednesday approved a plan to push the deadline back.

The original opt-out deadline was Thursday. The sides agreed last week to push the date back and allow more time for talks with hope of getting closer to a new CBA deal.

There are “ongoing efforts to reach a new agreement,” the league and the National Basketball Players Association said Wednesday. The deadline could be pushed back again if the sides deem it necessary. If either side opts out, the current CBA will expire on June 30.

Among the issues that the NBA and the NBPA have been discussing in recent weeks is a return to letting players enter the draft straight out high school without waiting a year — that move is expected to be included in the next CBA — along with what the league considers an “upper spending limit” that would significantly tighten the rules on how much teams can spend each year on their roster.

There has not been a labor-related stoppage in the NBA since 2011, when a lockout lasted just over five months and saw the 2011-12 season reduced from 82 to 66 games.

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