SBD/November 6, 2013/Leagues and Governing Bodies

PGA Tour Continues Fight To Dismiss Vijay Singh Lawsuit Following Doping Suspension

Singh's agent claims the PGA Tour singled out his client for doping
The Oct. 24 oral arguments on the PGA Tour's motion to dismiss the lawsuit filed by golfer Vijay Singh "turned into a back-and-forth on who has the power: the Tour administration headed by commissioner Tim Finchem, or the players themselves," according to Garry Smits of the FLORIDA TIMES-UNION. Singh's attorney Peter Ginsberg said that the Tour "has made 'exception after exception' in the administration of its Anti-Doping policy and player disciplinary action, and claimed the Tour singled Singh out when it suspended him in February." Tour attorney Jeffrey Mishkin said that a characterization in Singh's lawsuit that Tour players "have no input into its rules and policies was wrong." Singh claimed that players have no “bargaining power,” such as unions in other pro sports. Michkin said, "The players themselves govern the Tour, control the Tour." Smits notes player control is "required under the legal definition of a 501 (c) (6) non-profit." But Ginsberg said that the PGA Tour "'dictates every step of the way' and that Singh was compelled to sign the membership agreement or be denied an opportunity to make a living." Ginsberg: "The PGA (Tour) isn't like the NFL or Major League Baseball ... because those sports organizations have a counterbalance to management -- there are collective bargaining agreements and there are unions and there are negotiated procedures. Those don’t exist with the PGA (Tour)." Ginsberg added that the Tour "monopolizes professional golf." He also said that the Tour was "irresponsible for not testing Deer Antler Spray soon enough" (FLORIDA TIMES-UNION, 11/6). Meanwhile, Tiger Woods said, "I may have been tested five times this year. That's usually about the number for most guys." He added, "It's incredibly random and it's frustrating and annoying at times, but I guess golf's now a pretty big sport and should fall in line." However, Woods said, "I don't think I have ever been tested on the European Tour" (SCOTSMAN.com, 11/5).
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