SBD/January 21, 2013/Leagues and Governing Bodies

Nets' Deron Williams Speaks Out Against Billy Hunter, Calling For NBPA Change

Williams believes players are split over support for Hunter

Nets G Deron Williams on Friday became the league’s "first high-profile player" to call for the "ouster" of NBPA Exec Dir Billy Hunter, according to Ken Berger of Williams said, “I think change is needed, top to bottom." Williams’ comments come after the publication of a 469-page report released Thursday which absolved Hunter of criminal liability but "blasted him with a meticulous assault against what it characterized as questionable stewardship of union finances, failure to properly manage conflicts of interest ... as well as a litany of acts that displayed poor judgment and served his personal interests above those of union.” Williams: "I don't think things were getting voted on like they should have been. I'm sure there's guys that are still with Billy, and some guys that aren't. We've just got to figure out what the next step is." Hawks G Kyle Korver said, "I think everyone's got to read the information, and we've got to make the decision together. I think where all this can go wrong is when people start throwing out their opinions. We all have the information now. In the past, we didn't always know. ... We need some of the higher-caliber players to kind of step up and bring some guys together" (, 1/18).

HUNTING SEASON? In Boston, Gary Washburn wrote the question now is "whether major structural changes are in store" for the NBPA. Whether Hunter retains his position will be "determined by the powers in the executive committee and Board of Representatives." A source said that there are "two factions in the union -- those who are supportive of and loyal to Hunter, and those who are not and believe he has lost the past two labor negotiations." The report "demonstrated that more players need to be involved in the union's business structure and decision-making -- or it could weaken even more or even dissolve" (BOSTON GLOBE, 1/20). USA TODAY's Jeff Zillgitt cites a source as saying that many agents will be "satisfied as long as Hunter is not involved in the next round of collective bargaining negotiations" (USA TODAY, 1/21).
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