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OKC Loud Links: New Week, CBA News In Store?

The CBA negotiation is scheduled to resume today, and unlike last time, the major players will be involved. Honestly, I doubt that very much will get resolved today, because I don't think they yet feel like they need to resolve anything. Perhaps I'm being cynical, but I tend to look at today's meeting as an outward showing by the league and NBPA to convey that, yes, we're still trying to hammer out a deal. Maybe so. I doubt it.

NBA, Union to Meeet Today | ESPN

A quick rehash here as to how far apart both parties are in finding a comfortable middle-ground. At this point, I think the greater negotiation is between union head Billy Hunter and the players he supposedly represents.

Reggie Jackson Clears the Air | NewsOK

New Thunder draft pick Reggie Jackson provides his take on what happened during draft night, and does his best to put to rest the rumors that OKC or any team had promised to draft him.

FIBA: NBA Players Can Go Overseas | ESPN

FIBA announced Friday it would clear NBA players under contract to play in its leagues during the work stoppage, provided the deals they sign come with opt-out clauses.

In a ruling that paves the way for players to earn a paycheck, FIBA agreed with NBA and players' association officials that players are free to sign anywhere but do so at their own risk of injury.

NBA General Manager Rankings | SB Nation

SB Nation's Mike Prada ranks all 30 franchise GM's. OKC GM Sam Presti comes in at #2, ranked behind only Pat Riley. You will never guess who is last.

Presti's Place Among GM's | Daily Thunder

Young comments on Prada's ranking above, noting that one of the things that Presti has been able to do is get everybody to buy into his system. In 2008, we saw the Boston Celtics ride a philosophy called "ubuntu," which helped bring them together as a team. In a sense, the Thunder's philosophy goes even deeper, because it stretches up even to management. 

Will Amnesty Clause Help Competitive Balance? | Wages of Wins

This is a great post on the difference between "competitive balance" and "balance sheet balance." No matter how the money gets redistributed, there is no antidote for the fact that there is a scarcity of truly elite franchise-altering talent.

Moving Forward | Hardwood Paroxysm

It is the new golden age of point guards, but as this one writer notes, it also means the end of a brilliant stretch from some great power forwards, led by all-time great Tim Duncan.

More links after the jump.

Sonics Celebration Night Goes Down in Seattle Mariners History | Seattle PI

In case you missed it, the MLB team Seattle Mariners hosted "Seattle Sonics" night this past Friday. Apparently the NBA was aware of the event, and it was in fact being entirely promoted by the Mariners ball club.

A Mariner's and Barber's Tribute to the Sonics | Hardwood Paroxysm

Just for you, the top five Sonics hair-do's. Perms and Jheri-curls abound.

Kobe, Amare Most Overrated by TV, Fans | Wages of Wins

Here is a good examination of how far askew fans' perceptions are of individual players, in particular those who attend All-Star Games. There are a few Thunder players on this list, so give it a look.

NBA Ref Demonstrates Uncommon Humanity, Fans Don't Call Him Names (For One Day) | Ball Don't Lie

NBA referee Mark Wunderlich had his house burglarized by a friend. Instead of unleashing justifiable indignation, Wunderlich saw past his own emotions and had compassion on his perpetrator.  

Wachovia Chasing Stephon Marbury for $16 Million Loan | Deadspin

Put aside the fact that former NBA All-Star Stephon Marbury is in financial troubles, because that really shouldn't be all that surprising. Buried in this story is the fact that apparently Marbury had a $75 MILLION dollar real estate business. Just when I think the NBA lifestyle can't surprise me anymore, along comes guys like Stephon to renew my hope in expecting the unexpected.

Samaki Walker Gets Pulled Over, Tries to Eat Weed | Ball Don't Lie

Some things just have a way of explaining themselves over time.

Casting the New Arrested Development Movie, NBA Style | Crossover Chronicles

Mark Jackson, starring as Tobias Funke. I'm afraid I just blue myself.