The Dallas Mavericks are keenly aware that there is a chance, if the 2011-12 season ever starts, that any one or more of their free agents that includes Tyson Chandler, Caron Butler, J.J. Barea, DeShawn Stevenson and Brian Cardinal -- all contributors to the championship run -- might be playing elsewhere and won't be around to celebrate the raising of the banner.
After Monday's events in which the players walked away from the owners' latest labor proposal and the NBPA disbanded to send this prolonged process into a murky legal battle, the season, as commissioner David Stern suggested, is in serious jeopardy.
Both Terry and Kidd are to enter the final years of their contracts. Terry, who would be entering his eighth season in Dallas, risks losing $11.7 million if there is no season. Terry, 34, says he wants to retire with the Mavs, and the team has said they want the same. But, once in free agency, anything can happen. Kidd stands to lose $9.6 million in what would be his 18th NBA season and possibly his last. The sure-fire Hall of Famer has said he would like to play into his 40s -- he turns 39 in March -- but, again there are no guarantees.
Particularly if there is no season. Kidd has said that a total wipeout of the season could end his career because it would be too difficult to fire up the body after not playing for a full year.
Back in March, I surveyed 14 Mavs players, asking if there would be a lockout and, if so, would it last at least six months, putting a resolution date at Dec. 1.
One player answered no, that a lockout would be averted. The player? Jason Kidd.
Perhaps it was wishful thinking for the point guard who would go on to silence his doubters by having a spectacular postseason in winning the first championship of his career.
Interestingly, back in March, players were more optimistic that a lockout would not last long. Only four of the 14 players surveyed said that the lockout would last at least six months. It now appears they were right.
And with the fight going to the courts, the entire season could be lost. That means whenever basketball returns and whenever the Mavs finally get to raise the franchise's first championship banner to the American Airlines Center rafters, the list of players who no longer will be in a Mavs uniform could grow by two.