The entire NBA season is in serious jeopardy after the players rejected the owners’ latest offer – instead opting to disband and file a lawsuit against the League.

“We have arrived at the conclusion that the collective bargaining process has completely broken down,” NBPA executive director Billy Hunter said at a news conference in New York.

“As a result, within the last hour we served a notice of disclaimer on Commissioner (David) Stern and the NBA.”

A shift from the negotiating room to the courts also came during this year’s National Football League labor dispute, but NFL owners and players were able to reach an agreement before their season began and did not lose any regular season games.

The NBA, however, has already canceled the first month of a regular season that was scheduled to begin two weeks ago — and offered no assurance that further cuts can be avoided.

“There will ultimately be a new collective bargaining agreement, but the 2011-12 season is now in jeopardy,” Stern said in a statement.

The NBA, which claims it lost $300 million last season with 22 of its 30 teams in the red, locked out its players on July 1 given a disagreement over two major issues — the division of basketball-related income and salary cap structure.

The latest offer by the NBA called for a 50-50 split of basketball related income between the owners and players and would have provided for a 72-game season to start on December 15.

Players, who received 57 percent of basketball income in the previous contract, are also at odds with the owners’ over rules governing contracts and free agency.

“We will allow our legal team to really lead the charge and hopefully at some point assist us in getting a deal done that is fair to our entire body,” NBPA president Derek Fisher of the Los Angeles Lakers said.

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