New York, NY – To say that significant progress was made in Thursday's NBA labor talks would be misleading, although representatives for the owners and union members met for nearly 5 1/2 hours for a second straight day.
The two sides will meet again on Tuesday, but this time in a bigger group as they try to made inroads on a new collective bargaining agreement to try and end the lockout.
"I don't really know that it's positive or negative, I just know that it's time to bring the parties into the room who are going to be responsible for either making a deal or deciding if there shouldn't be a deal," NBA commissioner David Stern said of the larger meeting.
"It's one thing to try and gain as much traction as we can in smaller group settings, but at some point before you can try to make any attempt at a large progress, you have to involve all your respective members that are ultimately going to make the decisions," union president Derek Fisher of the Los Angeles Lakers said.
Both sides wouldn't discuss what progress was made, but as the calendar moves forward the owners and players will be meeting separately later next week, the owners in Dallas and the players in Las Vegas, both next Thursday.
"I do think there will be an effort, at least from our part, to have some type of feeling about where this is going by the time we go and talk to our players on Thursday in Las Vegas," Fisher added. "I can't assume that's what commissioner Stern and the league is going to do, but it's a fair assumption."
Although there's still more than enough time to get a deal done before the regular season begins on November 1, the preseason is creeping up with the first contests scheduled for October 9. Training camps are slated to open October 3.
The NBA locked out its players on July 1 after the most recent labor deal between the two sides expired. The sides didn't meet until a month later and Wednesday marked their first face-to-face meeting since August 1.