Union: NBA’s Economic Woes ‘Inflated and Inaccurate’

by June 14, 2010

According to a podcast obtained by Yahoo!, Billy Hunter is telling the folks he represents (ie. NBA players) that the League’s claims of woe are nowhere near accurate: “In a podcast distributed to his union membership, NBA Players Association executive director Billy Hunter called commissioner David Stern’s claims that the league has suffered losses of $400 million ‘inflated and inaccurate.’ Hunter is trying to rally the players against a commissioner and ownership that he believes is determined to stage a lockout during the 2011-12 season to deliver unprecedented givebacks and cost certainties with a new collective bargaining agreement. ‘We believe that the NBA owners may have actually been profitable over the past several seasons,’ Hunter said … ‘We are mindful of the potentially negative impact that last summer’s NBA’s cap predictions had on the offers made to the 2009 free agent class and our staff attorneys are currently considering whether the union should file a claim of collusion against the NBA,’ Hunter said. Hunter cited several indicators of why the union believes the NBA is fabricating team losses as it pushes for massive givebacks by the players in CBA discussions. One of the main contentions of the union comes with owners who also possess arenas and television networks, and how money is shuffled around to show losses. Hunter offered Dallas Mavericks owner Mark Cuban’s legal battle with minority investor Ross Perot Jr. as an example.”