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OKC Loud Links: New Mediation Steps?

The NBA and NBPA sought out the sage wisdom of federal mediator George Cohen to try to help bridge the gap, and unfortunately Cohen failed. Now, a new man is being mentioned that may be able to help. His name is Jim Quinn, and he is quite familiar with the NBPA's history.

Both Sides Reach Out to Deal Maker Jim Quinn | CBS Sports

A new deal maker may be coming on the scene. 

That person is Jim Quinn, who for nearly 20 years served as lead outside counsel for the National Basketball Players Association and who helped broker the deal that ended the 1998-99 lockout. Quinn's unique perspective as a longtime, formidable and respected adversary of commissioner David Stern covers multiple collective bargaining agreements as well as the landmark antitrust lawsuit spearheaded by Hall of Famer Oscar Robertson in 1976.

Could a Mediator Save the Season? | Sports Illustrated

If Quinn's assistance doesn't work out, the next step might be a celebrity divorce attorney. Or at least listen to Kanye and get a prenup next time.

Mediation Could Begin Next Week? | CBS Sports

George Cohen, the federal mediator, may step to the side if the Minnesota magistrate judge decides to appoint a new mediator to oversee things.

Changes Could Result in Stronger Pay-for-Play Paradigm | SB Nation

Ziller hits on an important facet of competitive balance. You cannot make teams 'competitive.' You can only incentivise them to pursue a competitive model, which involves chasing players who have a desire to be competitive. 

The Basketball Jones OKC Podcast | The Basketball Jones

Skeets, Tas, and their band of merry men made their way to Oklahoma City. 

Perkins Reflects on Playing, Friendship With Rondo | CNNSE

Kendrick Perkins opened up a bit on his close friendship with Rajon Rondo and how the impact of the trade has affected them both.

Meta World Peace Challenges Jordan to 1 on 1 | CBS Sports

Erstwhile Ron Artest is still bringing the intensity, and even promises he can beat Jordan while holding an In n Out Burger in his right hand, which is the ultimate trash talk. 

This throw-down also reminds me of this infamous story, where a young Ron Artest once broke Michael Jordan's ribs during summer league. Jordan's response?

"I love Ron Artest."

Why Isn't It Simple? | Blazers Edge

This post deals well with the idea that the players have the right to fight for what they have, and why even small gaps are still insurmountable.

More links after the jump.

Obama Classic to Feature Stellar Lineup | SB Nation

Of course, I bet you didn't realize that Hamady Ndiaye was an all-star.

Cavs Lose Video Production Editor to WWE |

I think it would be so great if Vince McMahon staged his own "Decision" infomercial to commemorate this.

Tulsa 66ers Set Opening Day Roster | Our Sports Central

The Thunder's D-League team the Tulsa 66ers are preparing for the beginning of their season.

Deron Williams Scores 50 |

Deron Williams finally decided to play like the all-star that he is.