In Pittsburgh, Carl Prine reports the NFLPA "has been sacked with a federal lawsuit brought by some retired athletes." Five former players -- Bernie Parrish, Bob Grant, Clinton Jones, Walter Roberts III and Marvin Cobb -- claim the NFLPA and its for-profit Players Inc. subsidiary "defrauded thousands of former players of lucrative royalties when video games, apparel companies, football-card manufacturers and others used their images." The class-action lawsuit was "filed Wednesday in federal court in Los Angeles but has gone relatively unnoticed" (Pittsburgh TRIBUNE-REVIEW, 4/19).
THINK IT THROUGH: In N.Y., Harvey Araton writes after the "best opening weekend of NBA playoff basketball since the invention of the shot clock," Commissioner David Stern's "first order of NBA business Monday morning should have been a memo to all owners agitating for apocalyptic labor confrontation this summer at the potential expense of the 2011-12 season." Stern should have written, "From the desk of your humble Commissioner: maybe we should rethink this draconian position." Araton writes, "After all the public-relations hits Stern's league has taken through the years, is next season really the time to risk shutting it down? The other day, Stern did speak of a new proposal for the players. Memo to owners: sit down, hammer out a reasonable deal and maybe all of you wind up smelling like a rose" (N.Y. TIMES, 4/19).
A FRESH PERSPECTIVE: In L.A., Jim Peltz wrote as Randy Bernard begins his second year as IndyCar CEO, he "leaves no doubt he's in charge and willing to make changes in hopes of reviving a series whose popularity has tumbled from the days when it dominated U.S. racing." Bernard: "My job is to bring notoriety to the sport. We've got to grow our fan base. ... We have to redefine our sport. If (fans) were once passionate about open-wheel racing, why can't they be again?" IndyCar driver Dario Franchitti said, "He's coming at it from a completely different angle as a promoter, and he's always looking for that way to create a better show" (L.A. TIMES, 4/17).