As any football fan now knows, we are officially in a ‘lockout’ as the players and owners could not come to an agreement on a new collective bargaining agreement this past Friday. While there is still a chance the lockout could be lifted due to a temporary injuction appeal filed by the players, it is likely that this will be settled in the courts and that’s not good. Unless you’ve been living on Mars, the United States legal system is not exactly a smooth-running machine. With appeals, hearings, disclosures, etc. this thing could easily stretch into the season costing us games. Bottom line is that by the time appeals are decided on just the injunction, it could already be May or June and THEN they’ll start actually working through the courts on a new CBA.
So where does the blame fall here? Both sides are guilty. The owners have pledged honesty and transparency but were reluctant to provide it. The players almost seemed more interested in taking this through the courts than actually striking a deal. My initial thoughts at the proposal was that it was a fairly genuine offer by the League, which would have required the players to take a paycut in the neighborhood of 15%. That cut would have been used to help fund benefits for retired players and also help set up lifetime benefits for current players. I can understand the players scoffing at any form of paycut especially as it looks like the owners ‘get richer,’ but players also need to understand the world we live in right now. Make no mistake that the vast majority of fans who buy the tickets, buy the apparel, and go to the training camps are struggling financially too. Everyone is seemingly being asked to sacrifice more and more, just ask Wisconsin. With that said, I get what the players are fighting for. Their occupation is unlike any other and has a shelf-life unlike any other and I can appreciate that so it really can be comparing apples and oranges, but that doesn’t mean they’ll get any sympathy just yet. So now we’re stuck with Tom Brady v. NFL in what could be a sweeping anti-trust type of ejudication. Let’s just hope Brady gets a haircut and for the love of God, pray that he doesn’t dance on the witness stand.
One other thought… Looks like the NFLPA is urging those young men that expect to be drafted in the first round of next month’s draft to stay away from New York City and perhaps not even do interviews with either ESPN or NFLN. Frankly, a lot of the interviews suck anyway so I wouldn’t miss them that much, but it’s the point being made here by the players. They seem certain in willing to play hardball.
THE FINAL SPEW: Words don’t do the events in Japan justice. Thoughts definitely with the people of the Pacific area today…. Did Donald Trump violate federal election laws before even deciding to run? A Ron Paul supporter thinks so…. These satellite photos from high above Japan are amazing. The devastation is overwhelming…. Mike Tyson for your iPhone anyone?…. The T-Wolves’ Kevin Love saw his double-double streak end last night at 53. When you really think about it, this was not as easy as you’d think… You know all those clips of excited teams getting their tourney invite? Ya, ummm, here’s Colorado. Who didn’t….. Today’s video is from “Cheers.” Classic Cliff and his ‘squeaky shoes.’