NBPA members are in "no rush to hire a search firm to help select a new executive director," according to Hank Kurz Jr. of the AP. NBPA VP Jerry Stackhouse said that the focus is on "getting more players involved in union activities." The nine-member exec committee is hoping to "get former players to help make the union's importance known to the current membership." The committee also is "finding out what current players consider their priorities." Stackhouse mentioned Basketball HOFers Julius Erving and Bill Bradley as "examples of former stars whose input would be sought and said those efforts would begin once the NBA Finals are over." Nuggets F Andre Iguodala said, "What we're trying to do is get as many guys as we can to come together and understand how important this is to buckle down and take on some responsibilities." Stackhouse hopes the attendance at the August players meeting in Las Vegas "will show that the players understand." He said, "We've got to educate guys about the union and make them understand that the day's going to come when you're not going to be able to play this game anymore" (AP, 6/16).
Leagues and Governing Bodies
News Corp. Chair & CEO Rupert Murdoch "is exploring an ambitious plan to create a summer football competition featuring Europe's top clubs, including English Premier League sides," with matches to be played in cities from L.A. to Shanghai, according to Sweney & Gibson of the GUARDIAN. The idea would "see a 16-team competition run for 10 years with a potential start date of 2015 in the close season when clubs traditionally play exhibition matches." Matches would be "aired on Sky and by Murdoch's other broadcasters worldwide." A source described the plan as similar to the "Formula One-isation of football," with cities "bidding to host tournament matches." Approaches have been made to a number of cities by execs from Murdoch subsidiary Fox Int'l to "explore partnerships to host the exhibition-style tournament matches" (GUARDIAN, 6/14). In London, Josie Ensor reported the "idea to start a European super league has previously been attempted with little success." News Corp. in '11 also made an "unsuccessful attempt to take control" of F1 (London TELEGRAPH, 6/16).