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"The reason I bring up 2026 is that the players failed this cycle. They didn’t ask for enough, and what they asked for that was significant they gave up on quickly. Their current positions simply extend the last CBA with different numbers, as opposed to meaningfully update the compensation structure to reflect modern career paths. Their positions don’t push teams to compete harder for wins or for players. They simply can’t win this cycle no matter what. So take the deal that’s 2% worse than the one you are offering, spend the next five years knowing the 2027 season may not be played, and try to get your case through to the league and, to a lesser extent, the media and fans.