Blog Entry

Report: NBA players fed up with Billy Hunter?

Posted on: November 1, 2011 6:43 pm
Edited on: November 1, 2011 6:54 pm
 
Posted by Ben Golliver

derek-fisher-billy-hunter

Taking a break during a protracted negotiation is supposed to allow for a reassessment period, to provide time for a rethinking of positions and, perhaps most importantly, to allow space for cooler heads to prevail.

Instead, tensions are reportedly mounting, with frustration and impatience threatening to boil over.

Yahoo Sports reports that some portion of the the NBA's players are growing increasingly disenchanted with National Basketball Players Association executive director Billy Hunter because he has not yet delivered a deal for the entire union membership to vote on. 
From superstars to midlevel players to rookies, there’s an unmistakable push to complete the final elements of the system and take this labor deal to the union’s 400-plus membership. Beyond that, there’s an even larger movement to push Hunter, the Players Association’s executive director, out the door once these labor talks are done. All hell’s broken loose within the union, and no one is exactly sure how they’re going to get a deal to the finish line.

“Billy can’t just say it’s 52 or nothing, and walk out again,” one league source involved the talks told Yahoo! Sports. “That will not happen again. It’s time that the players get to make a decision on this, and there won’t be another check lost before they do.”
The site also apparently confirms previous reports of a developing rift between Hunter and NBPA president Derek Fisher, a rift that Fisher denied in a letter to NBPA members on Monday night.
“Right now, everyone has to choose sides: Billy or Derek,” one player involved in the labor process told Yahoo! Sports. “How the [expletive] did it come to this?”
What to make of this? Well, in the absence of actual meetings, which provide the potential for progress and thus the comfort of optimism, there are going to be a lot of hurt feelings. Panicking isn't an unreasonable response, especially if a deal was relatively close but now feels far away. Union members demand action and results from their leadership. Both Fisher and Hunter signed up for that.

For months now, as far as anyone can tell, the NBPA's strategy was to not blink for as long as possible and hope that the NBA's owners were bluffing about being willing to lose games so that they could overhaul the system. The owners never blinked even though they had multiple opportunities to do so. The strategy didn't succeed and the players are now quickly reaching the point where holding out becomes solely about principle rather than about economics. 

Whether it's time for a leadership shakeup -- or for the current leadership to publicly mend fences -- is a sideshow to the larger issue for the players: It's time for a new strategy. Holding out for the sake of holding out is self-defeating and will be, ultimately, very costly. The NBPA should be using this time away from the bargaining table to take the temperature of its members. As the calendar has changed, so too might have opinions about whether holding out is worth it. If the majority of the NBPA's members continue to endorse the current strategy, then Fisher and Hunter, together, should blanket the airwaves spreading that message, rather than letting rumors and innuendo undercut their authority. If not, what are they waiting for? Call a meeting and get it done.
Comments

Since: Nov 2, 2011
Posted on: November 2, 2011 5:38 pm
 

Report: NBA players fed up with Billy Hunter?

Go to www.nbafanifesto.com to express your discontent.  And spread the word!



Since: May 17, 2008
Posted on: November 2, 2011 4:32 pm
 

Report: NBA players fed up with Billy Hunter?

JonSenior,  no is asking to share "profits" with the owners, only to have the cap on revenues spent on some income "Basketball related" to be spent on salaries to players in the form of guaranteed contracts.
@setmetheball-- in my opinion this is exactly the problem, the players are not asking for a majority of the "profits" (thus taking the risk that there are no profits and thus no money to the players), they are asking for a majority of the "revenue" be given to them -- a "floor" (minimum) not a "cap" (the players are adamant against a hard salary cap that would put an upper limit on salaries, they want a lower limit).  The owners simply will not, and should not be expected to, continue to operate under a business model in which they are losing money.  Like it or not the NBA is a business and the owners want to make money, not lose it and that means reducing costs, including player salaries which last year were at least 57% of Revenue.  Keep in mind all the other expenses owners have to pay in addition to player salaries before they see a dime while the players' money is guaranteed.  If the players want to be partners then fine, they can pay the owners for  a portion of the teams and then only get paid if the team makes money rather than guaranteed salaries up front.



Since: Dec 8, 2006
Posted on: November 2, 2011 1:20 pm
 

Report: NBA players fed up with Billy Hunter?

Where is the story about the thousands of underpaid poor people who have lost there jobs as a result of millionaires and billionaires arguing over 2 percent?




Since: Oct 6, 2009
Posted on: November 2, 2011 1:01 pm
 

Report: NBA players fed up with Billy Hunter?

This whole situation is just too frustrating to watch.  The owners are doing what they have always done to make money, they are being businessmen.  I personally don't have a problem with them negotiating from that point of power.  The players make ALOT of money to play the game.  Of course they are at the whim of an injury or slump and no longer in the league.  But they do make a pretty good amount of cash in their time there.  As a player educate yourself a bit more with what you should do with that cash when you are playing.  Maybe do away with a little bit of the severe bling and put some of that cash away...



Since: Feb 11, 2011
Posted on: November 2, 2011 12:47 pm
 

Report: NBA players fed up with Billy Hunter?

Wake up NBA players...52% of Nothing Equals Nothing.....50% of a large amount Equals a Large amount.....



Since: Dec 4, 2010
Posted on: November 2, 2011 12:41 pm
 

Report: NBA players fed up with Billy Hunter?

I see that TNT is running a Bones marathon to replace the cancelled NBA games.  Seems appropriate since the players do not like the 50/50 bone thrown to them by the owners to chew on.  More meetings? Hmmm.  First paychecks are due when?  Let the disenchantment begin indeed!



Since: Nov 10, 2006
Posted on: November 2, 2011 12:24 pm
 

Report: NBA players fed up with Billy Hunter?

"If my only other optiion for employment was Burger King instead of the high life of the NBA, even at half the salary, I'd be upset too."

BEST comment of the day. Thank you sir.

I think the gap is closing and we should have a deal within the next 2 weeks or so. Aside from the superstar players, I'm sure the average NBA player is starting to feel the brunt of the lockout/missed paychecks.  I know the union is supposed to show "solidarity", but cracks are already working there way into that.



Since: Nov 2, 2011
Posted on: November 2, 2011 12:23 pm
 

Report: NBA players fed up with Billy Hunter?

Players fed up?  Fans are even more pissed, as evidenced by the site nbafanifesto.com, where fans are talking with their feet usng the power of the purse to push both parties towards agreement.



Since: Sep 27, 2006
Posted on: November 2, 2011 12:06 pm
 

Report: NBA players fed up with Billy Hunter?

If my only other optiion for employment was Burger King instead of the high life of the NBA, even at half the salary, I'd be upset too.




Since: Aug 17, 2006
Posted on: November 2, 2011 12:03 pm
 

Report: NBA players fed up with Billy Hunter?

JonSenior,  no is asking to share "profits" with the owners, only to have the cap on revenues spent on some income "Basketball related" to be spent on salaries to players in the form of guaranteed contracts.    T
he what gives them the right is the majic of collective bargining, especially to set the salary and contract limitations on plays not even in the "Union" yet.  


I do agree that shorter contracts and more performance pay would be a huge help to the league and help with the competative balance problem which the owners barely think is a problem (NFL style revenue sharing) and the players do not appear to think is a problem.  


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