- Associated Press - Monday, March 14, 2011

WASHINGTON (AP) - The top spokesman for NFL players says the union and league were not very close to agreeing to a new labor deal last week.

George Atallah said in a conference call with reporters Monday: “The perception is that we were really, really close. The reality is: We really, really weren’t.”

Negotiations broke off Friday. The union dissolved itself and players sued the league in federal court; owners imposed a lockout.

New Orleans Saints quarterback Drew Brees says the owners’ final proposal Friday “was all a show, with no real intent to get a deal done.”

The two main sticking points: how much money owners would get up front before dividing the rest of $9 billion in annual revenues with players, and the union’s demand for full financial disclosure.

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