The Mess Derek Fisher and Billy Hunter Find Themselves in

by November 02, 2011

by Marcel Mutoni@marcel_mutoni

This is how embarrassingly bad things have gotten for the NBA players’ side in this labor war: they went from fighting David Stern, public opinion, and the team owners. to fighting allegations that their leaders are now fighting amongst themselves.

Here’s the blow-by-blow of what’s taken place over the last 72 hours or so, a crucial period of time that could have otherwise been used to, oh gee I don’t know, negotiate to end the NBA lockout perhaps?

After it was reported that Derek Fisher had cut a side-deal with David Stern for the players to accept the 50/50 split on BRI, Fisher wrote a letter (which was of course leaked to the press) denying the whole thing. Another report came out that Billy Hunter was no longer in good standing within the union, which forced him to write his own letter — leaked once again — claiming that everything was rosy, and that everyone must stick together. Fisher then took things to another level by lawyering up in his latest missive claiming he’s not partnering with the League on any deals.

Got all that? Good.

For what it’s worth, David Stern says that he didn’t have a secret meeting with Derek Fisher, and that no side-deals have been cut. It wasn’t reported whether or not Stern was laughing uproariously at the ridiculous position the players’ union finds itself in now.

Ugh. What a disaster.

At the end of the day, it doesn’t matter who’s telling the truth between Billy Hunter, Derek Fisher and the media’s “sources”.

All that matters is that labor negotiations between owners and the union must renew, players have to somehow get out of this with a halfway-decent deal, and most importantly, NBA games need to start being played again, and soon.