SUPREME COURT ANNOUNCEMENT MAY TRANSLATE INTO NFL LABOR WOES
The Supreme Court could rule as early as today whether or
not it will hear a case for 18 current and former NFL players who
say they were unfairly represented by NFLPA-paid lawyers,
according to this morning's WASHINGTON POST. The suit seeks to
overturn a portion of a '93 U.S. District Court settlement that
led to the current CBA and prevents players from suing the NFL
for damages allegedly incurred from '89 to '92, when the NFL used
its Plan B system of restricting free agents. If the Supreme
Court declines the case and doesn't send it back to the 8th
Circuit Court of Appeals for further action, then it will die and
the NFL and the NFLPA can continue talks to extend the CBA. If
the Supreme Court takes the case and rules in favor of the 18
players, it could lead to hundreds of suits by players whose
contracts expired from '89 to '92. In addition, the NFL retains
the right to cancel the entire CBA if any court allows players to
opt out and sue. Dave Sell notes that whether or not the owners
would do so, and what would result if they did, is "unclear"
(WASHINGTON POST, 6/12).
OTHER WOES: Will McDonough reports in Sunday's BOSTON GLOBE
that the NFL is "getting nervous" about Malcolm Glazer having not
finalized the deal to buy the Bucs. Glazer has until July 14 or
the team becomes the property of the Culverhouse estate (BOSTON
GLOBE, 6/11)....The Falcons have sold fewer than 40,000 season
tickets this year and will start offering three-game packages to
pick up sales (Tim Tucker, ATLANTA CONSTITUTION, 6/11). The task
force of regional government and business leaders working to keep
the Bengals and Reds in Cincinnati plan to update OH Gov. George
Voinovich and OH Senate President Stanley Aronoff on Tuesday.
The group hopes to have a detailed plan to Bengals owner Mike
Brown within two weeks (AP/Baltimore SUN, 6/10).