Free Agents Advised to Prepare for Lockout

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Players and owners have the ability to opt out of the current collective bargaining agreement after the 2016-17 season, and the memo is the most telling sign yet that one or possibly both sides may exercise.

Specifically, the letter – which was written by interim executive director Ron Klempner – advised players who are free agents to use a provision which allows them to be paid over 18 months instead of 12 during the course of a season. The provision was negotiated into the current collective bargaining agreement during the negotiations that ended the 2011 lockout.

“We suggest that you consider including this provision in any multi-year contract you negotiate, specifically for the 2016-17 season,” Klempner wrote. “An 18-month payment schedule for 2016-17 will allow a player to continue receiving paychecks throughout the 2017-18 season, even if the players are lockout that season.”

via Sam Amick of USA TODAY Sports on Twitter