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SBD/December 14, 2011/Leagues and Governing Bodies
Some Veteran Players Not Happy With After Effect Of NBA Lockout
Published December 14, 2011
CAN'T TAKE THE HEAT? In Phoenix, Paul Coro writes Suns Managing Partner Robert Sarver "squirmed as he was portrayed as a hard-liner willing to sacrifice a season in collective-bargaining-agreement negotiations." Sarver said that his "actions were quite to the contrary during 50 committee meetings over the past two years." He said, "I was consistently at the forefront of trying to get a deal done, knowing it was important for our fans to see NBA basketball again this season." Sarver "disputes how reports, some coming from anonymous players-union sources, painted him but sees how a divide could have been formed during negotiating." He said that his "approach and desires in owners meetings did not always match what he said in negotiations because he was then representing the entire ownership group and not just his viewpoint." NBA Commissioner David Stern said of Sarver, "I would want him with me on anything important, as far as anything with business, directives, integrity or creativeness" (ARIZONA REPUBLIC, 12/14).
IS THE TIME RIGHT FOR STERN TO LEAVE? SportsNet N.Y.’s Jonas Schwartz said the fact the NBA "had that lockout 12 years ago and they didn't get any issues fixed -- just got worse -- has people wondering about it -- is it time for David Stern to retire?” WFAN-AM’s Joe Benigno said, “For all the time they lost, what was gained in this lockout? I don't get it. It seems to be pretty much the same as it was before and it's happened with the Lakers now vetoing the Paul trade, vetoing the Paul trade to the Clippers? … I think it's time for Stern to be out.” N.Y. Daily News columnist Bob Raissman said, "If you look at his whole body of work, it far surpasses what's going on now. This guy brought a lot to the league. Now, he's easy to kick out the door at this particular time when things have gone awry. Even I said it looks like a circus, like it's rigged, but I really think you got to look at the whole picture.” N.Y. Daily News columnist Tim Smith: “You also have to consider that sometimes when someone is in a job for so long, you need someone else to come in with a fresh set of eyes" ("Daily News Live," SportsNet N.Y., 12/13).