The 44th President of the United States is facing many thorny problems. Somewhere on this list of issues, presumably very far down, is the dearth of NBA basketball in his life.
Barack Obama weighed in on the NBA Lockout during a visit to Jay Leno's late-night talk show on Tuesday, drawing comparisons to the recent NFL labor dispute.
"Well, look, if you look at the NFL, they were able to settle theirs, and I think they understood. Players were making millions of dollars. Owners, some of us are worth billions of dollars," he said. "We should be able to figure out how to split a $9 billion pot so that our fans, who are allowing us to make all of this money, can actually have a good season. And I think the owners and the basketball players need to think the same way."
Obama went on to say that he's "concerned" about losing a full season.
"They need to remind themselves that the reason they are so successful is because a whole bunch of folks out there love basketball. Basketball has actually done well, but these types of lockouts a lot of times take a long time to recover from."
This wasn't the first time Obama has discussed the lockout. Earlier this month, he told attendees at a fundraiser in Orlando that he was "a little heartbroken" over it.
A lifelong basketball fan and participant, Obama won a state championship while playing for his high school team in 1979. Last August, he played in a pick-up game at the White House with several NBA all-stars, including LeBron James and Carmelo Anthony, to entertain visiting troops.
When Leno asked the President who he was pulling for in the World Series, Obama refused to take sides. "My White Sox are not in there so I just want to see a good game. I do not take sides unless it's my side," he said to laughs.
Although there are more pressing concerns for him to deal with, perhaps Obama could help bridge the divide between the players and the managers. After all, he's had ample experience trying to broker consensus between two antagonistic bodies during his presidency.
How much formidable than John Boehner can David Stern really be?
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