The NBA players rejected the league’s latest offer Monday and have begun the process to disband the union.
The decision likely jeopardizes the 2011-12 NBA season.
“We’re prepared to file this antitrust action against the NBA,” union executive director Billy Hunter said. “That’s the best situation where players can get their due process.”He said players were not prepared to accept NBA commissioner David Stern’s ultimatum, saying they thought it was “extremely unfair.”
“This is the best decision for the players,” union president Derek Fisher said. “I want to reiterate that point, that a lot of individual players have a lot of things personally at stake in terms of their careers and where they stand. And right now they feel it’s important — we all feel it’s important to all our players, not just the ones in this room, but our entire group — that we not only try to get a deal done for today but for the body of NBA players that will come into this league over the next decade and beyond.”
Fisher, flanked at a press conference by dozens of players including Kobe Bryant and Carmelo Anthony, said the decision was unanimous.
Hunter said the NBPA was in the process of converting to a trade association and that all players will be represented in a class-action suit against the NBA by attorneys Jeffrey Kessler and David Boies. The two attorneys were on opposite sides of the NFL labor dispute — Kessler working for the players, Boies for the league.
“We think that we’ve got a stellar team,” said Hunter, who added that Kessler and Boies may file their suit as early as later Monday and likely “sometime within the next two days.”
Hunter said the NBPA’s “notice of disclaimer” was filed with Stern’s office about an hour before the news conference announcing the move.
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article courtesy of ESPN.com
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