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lostknight
04-26-2011, 12:02 PM
So I just finished up reading all 73 pages of Judge Nelson's ruling and a couple of things immediately popped up:

It's a extraordinarily defensive document. It's designed to keep the 8th circuit from having the leeway to reverse her injunction.
It cuts NLRBA completely out, eliminating the possibility of the NFL being able to negotiate with the NFLPA, even with a waiver. (the rejection of the NLRBA may be the one thing that might be grounds for reversal).
It basically gives the players everything they want. There is not a single bit of leverage the owners have at this point in any sort of CBA style negotiation. Where they are at right now is perfectly acceptable to the players, and there is nothing management can do about it.
It makes it very unlikely that we will ever have a labor stoppage go managements way in any sense in the future. If management can never lock players out, only labor will be able to effect work-stoppages and thus own all of the future leverage in negotiations.


Already you can see some - such as Dominick Foxworth - pushing for exactly this outcome. The players basically can get everything that they want, without having to truly negotiate since the judge has basically ordered the NFL to employ them.

But the judge can't order the conditions that they are employed under. Foxworth and others are still living in a bit of a lala-land that assumes that there is some sort of floor that keeps them and their salaries safe, where other free market companies have shown no conniptions about outsourcing, reducing benefits and cutting employee expenses to the bone.

In fact, in this environment, the only way that the NFL to survive in this environment is to embrace total free market policies, and then arbitrarily take advantage of the fact that in a free market economy, they no longer have player salary minimums or salary cap floors.

Will the NFLPA be smart enough to see that? Will the owners be humane enough not to do that? I doubt both. Which is why I am starting to think that this might be the last draft for a long long while, and even signing people from this draft will be pretty much impossible until the situation stabilizes. Especially given that:


If the court rules the draft illegal (which they have done in the past), then the top picks in the current draft can sell their services to the highest bidder.
There will never be any kind of salary cap - including a rookie cap - without a new CBA.


thoughts?

SonOfLe-loLang
04-26-2011, 12:04 PM
There will be one because its very popular. Nuff said. I dont think anyones gonna open this pandoras box.

lostknight
04-26-2011, 12:06 PM
There will be one because its very popular. Nuff said. I dont think anyones gonna open this pandoras box.

I would argue that it's already been opened - and everyone is going to be horrified at what's involved.

SonOfLe-loLang
04-26-2011, 12:08 PM
I would argue that it's already been opened - and everyone is going to be horrified at what's involved.

I still think its more for leverage purposes at this point than anything, and the players have a lot of leverage. I dont think they want to raze the entire system.

epicSocialism4tw
04-26-2011, 12:11 PM
So I just finished up reading all 73 pages of Judge Nelson's ruling and a couple of things immediately popped up:

It's a extraordinarily defensive document. It's designed to keep the 8th circuit from having the leeway to reverse her injunction.
It cuts NLRBA completely out, eliminating the possibility of the NFL being able to negotiate with the NFLPA, even with a waiver. (the rejection of the NLRBA may be the one thing that might be grounds for reversal).
It basically gives the players everything they want. There is not a single bit of leverage the owners have at this point in any sort of CBA style negotiation. Where they are at right now is perfectly acceptable to the players, and there is nothing management can do about it.
It makes it very unlikely that we will ever have a labor stoppage go managements way in any sense in the future. If management can never lock players out, only labor will be able to effect work-stoppages and thus own all of the future leverage in negotiations.


Already you can see some - such as Dominick Foxworth - pushing for exactly this outcome. The players basically can get everything that they want, without having to truly negotiate since the judge has basically ordered the NFL to employ them.

But the judge can't order the conditions that they are employed under. Foxworth and others are still living in a bit of a lala-land that assumes that there is some sort of floor that keeps them and their salaries safe, where other free market companies have shown no conniptions about outsourcing, reducing benefits and cutting employee expenses to the bone.

In fact, in this environment, the only way that the NFL to survive in this environment is to embrace total free market policies, and then arbitrarily take advantage of the fact that in a free market economy, they no longer have player salary minimums or salary cap floors.

Will the NFLPA be smart enough to see that? Will the owners be humane enough not to do that? I doubt both. Which is why I am starting to think that this might be the last draft for a long long while, and even signing people from this draft will be pretty much impossible until the situation stabilizes. Especially given that:


If the court rules the draft illegal (which they have done in the past), then the top picks in the current draft can sell their services to the highest bidder.
There will never be any kind of salary cap - including a rookie cap - without a new CBA.


thoughts?

Taking your analysis at face value, this judge essentially hit the "detonate" button and let the bottom fall out.

cmhargrove
04-26-2011, 12:12 PM
Very interesting points - I haven't actually read the document, and probably wouldn't have the legal knowledge for proper interpretation.

What would this do to the Clarett rule? Could they also sign a kid right out of high school if they wanted?

lostknight
04-26-2011, 12:13 PM
Taking your analysis at face value, this judge essentially hit the "detonate" button and let the bottom fall out.

It's not quite that bad - if everyone behaves like adults. Even if they don't, the owners can do things that the NFLPA doesn't really want the too.

It's basically the football equivalent of Mutual Assured Destruction.

TheReverend
04-26-2011, 12:18 PM
There will be one because its very popular. Nuff said. I dont think anyones gonna open this pandoras box.

^

The ratings value of the draft is now higher than the MLB playoffs.

That's money that both the owners AND the players don't want to miss out on.

broncosteven
04-26-2011, 12:22 PM
^

The ratings value of the draft is now higher than the MLB playoffs.

That's money that both the owners AND the players don't want to miss out on.

I wish they would move it back to the Weekends though.

I have too much to do with my daughter during the week. I am going to have to DVR Thursday and miss all the drama because of her concert and soccer practice.

lostknight
04-26-2011, 12:24 PM
^

The ratings value of the draft is now higher than the MLB playoffs.

That's money that both the owners AND the players don't want to miss out on.

Why you say players? What do you mean? Remember that there is no mandated players. That means a top talent - say Cam Newton - can choose to directly approach teams, and there is nothing that anyone can do about that.

TheReverend
04-26-2011, 12:26 PM
Why you say players? What do you mean? Remember that there is no mandated players. That means a top talent - say Cam Newton - can choose to directly approach teams, and there is nothing that anyone can do about that.

The less money the owners make, the less they can spend. And if the players start taking chunks out of their pocket books with things like the draft vanishing, there will be retribution.

lostknight
04-26-2011, 12:31 PM
The less money the owners make, the less they can spend. And if the players start taking chunks out of their pocket books with things like the draft vanishing, there will be retribution.

That's kinda my point.

Boomhauer
04-26-2011, 12:34 PM
So I just finished up reading all 73 pages of Judge Nelson's ruling and a couple of things immediately popped up:
...
thoughts?

I've learned to ignore almost everything you say and have no reason to think you actually read, much less understood, the ruling. As such, I didn't read the rest of your post and will wait for others to reply for opinions on the matter.

oubronco
04-26-2011, 12:38 PM
Can the owners let them all come back and then fire every fuggin one of them and then be the boss they are supposed to be and run the NFL how they want?

lostknight
04-26-2011, 12:40 PM
Can the owners let them all come back and then fire every fuggin one of them and then be the boss they are supposed to be and run the NFL how they want?

No. Their current contracts protect them.

But they can hire people for 50k a year, then choose not to renew a new player.

RhymesayersDU
04-26-2011, 12:45 PM
I've learned to ignore almost everything you say and have no reason to think you actually read, much less understood, the ruling. As such, I didn't read the rest of your post and will wait for others to reply for opinions on the matter.

Hilarious. Glad we have football threads for gems like this!

lostknight
04-26-2011, 12:46 PM
We have all the tools we need to keep trolls at bay:

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gyldenlove
04-26-2011, 12:51 PM
I always found the draft an interesting prospect from a CBA standpoint given that the players who enter the draft are not part of the NFLPA until after the draft.

The draft will continue, that I am sure of. The players are obviously swinging for the fences right now, they want to get as much leverage as possible and put the owners under as much pressure as possible, but ultimately I don't think it is in anyones interest go eliminate the draft, it generates huge revenues and frankly is the only thing the NFL has going during the NBA and NHL playoffs.

DrFate
04-26-2011, 12:55 PM
I believe that Smith wanted nothing less than to re-write the way the NFL does business. While the draft is tremendously popular, I think Smith wants a total 'highest bidder' model. The NBA has two rounds of their draft - it used to be many more. The next logical step for a union is to abolish the draft and the mandatory contract length. Once the union forces the NFL to guarantee contracts, it's good night to what we know as the NFL now. We'll have teams trading contracts (ala the nonsense we see in the NBA) and small market teams will simply fold.

tsiguy96
04-26-2011, 12:55 PM
I always found the draft an interesting prospect from a CBA standpoint given that the players who enter the draft are not part of the NFLPA until after the draft.

The draft will continue, that I am sure of. The players are obviously swinging for the fences right now, they want to get as much leverage as possible and put the owners under as much pressure as possible, but ultimately I don't think it is in anyones interest go eliminate the draft, it generates huge revenues and frankly is the only thing the NFL has going during the NBA and NHL playoffs.

its still amazing to me that they want to put their employers under their thumb, how they can get this level of leverage on their bosses is incredible...

DrFate
04-26-2011, 12:57 PM
It's a extraordinarily defensive document. It's designed to keep the 8th circuit from having the leeway to reverse her injunction.
[/LIST]


Can you elaborate? The talking heads have used the term 'appeal proof' - and I'd like to know what is meant by that. How is it written to make appeal difficult?

If she's wrong on the law, there isn't any such thing as 'appeal proof'.

(and I'm not sure I could read the whole thing and retain what little sanity I have)

Drek
04-26-2011, 12:59 PM
The less money the owners make, the less they can spend. And if the players start taking chunks out of their pocket books with things like the draft vanishing, there will be retribution.

I'd bet on retribution now.

No salary cap and no salary floor. No vet minimum salary. Now every contract is based on an agreement between each individual player and the team, not an agreement within a collectively bargained framework.

Whats there to stop teams from cutting all the mid to low tier guys on their roster and bringing in a bunch of CFL imports and the like for a fraction more than what they make in the substandard leagues?

It legitimately allows the owners to run replacement players out there with no recourse for the mid to low tier guys who will get displaced. Picture a GM telling a UDFA who's on the bubble "well, we're deciding between you and this guy. He'll sign for 60K. Will you take 50K?" Sure as hell he will. But what if they tell the first guy "well he'll take 50K, you willing to come down to 40K?"

The talent gap between the bottom half of the NFL and guys in the CFL, Arena League, or hell, bagging groceries, isn't big enough for low end salaries to withstand real competitive negotiations.

gyldenlove
04-26-2011, 01:02 PM
its still amazing to me that they want to put their employers under their thumb, how they can get this level of leverage on their bosses is incredible...

It is not that difficult when your bosses are acting outside the law.

tsiguy96
04-26-2011, 01:03 PM
I'd bet on retribution now.

No salary cap and no salary floor. No vet minimum salary. Now every contract is based on an agreement between each individual player and the team, not an agreement within a collectively bargained framework.

Whats there to stop teams from cutting all the mid to low tier guys on their roster and bringing in a bunch of CFL imports and the like for a fraction more than what they make in the substandard leagues?

It legitimately allows the owners to run replacement players out there with no recourse for the mid to low tier guys who will get displaced. Picture a GM telling a UDFA who's on the bubble "well, we're deciding between you and this guy. He'll sign for 60K. Will you take 50K?" Sure as hell he will. But what if they tell the first guy "well he'll take 50K, you willing to come down to 40K?"

The talent gap between the bottom half of the NFL and guys in the CFL, Arena League, or hell, bagging groceries, isn't big enough for low end salaries to withstand real competitive negotiations.

i wonder if tom brady et al cared about this. but as long as the top 1% get their super mega million salaries....

DrFate
04-26-2011, 01:03 PM
It is not that difficult when your bosses are acting outside the law.

And how exactly were they doing that?

BroncoLifer
04-26-2011, 01:09 PM
It's a extraordinarily defensive document. It's designed to keep the 8th circuit from having the leeway to reverse her injunction.


But that means nothing. In actual practice the higher Court can review and remand or vacate her decision for any reason, or for no tangible reason at all.


It cuts NLRBA completely out, eliminating the possibility of the NFL being able to negotiate with the NFLPA, even with a waiver. (the rejection of the NLRBA may be the one thing that might be grounds for reversal).


When I read that portion cutting out the NLRB, I also thought "judicial error."

Also, bear these two things in mind:
- The order granting the NFLPA's motion for a preliminary injunction does not necessarily imply that the NFLPA has a winning case on the merits of their case regarding free agency, etc. -- something she repeats quite a few times. The NFL might still win the bigger case -- her ruling is that they just can't respond to the union decertification in the manner that they did. I understand that that proviso may not amount to much in the end, but it is worth considering.

- Most importantly of all in the long run, Congress can always change the anti-trust laws and their applicability to the NFL at any time. I think it likely that Congress would act if confronted with a "blown up" NFL that left their constituents unhappy.

tsiguy96
04-26-2011, 01:09 PM
It is not that difficult when your bosses are acting outside the law.

the entire draft process is outside the law, but the players agreed to it for 40+ years. when hte owners didnt did something the players didnt like, the players said "i no longer agree with the terms weve had for 40+ years" and decertified as a union, making everything about the draft and the NFL process illegal. its only outside the law because the players decertified to get leverage and MAKE it outside the law.

lostknight
04-26-2011, 01:11 PM
Can you elaborate? The talking heads have used the term 'appeal proof' - and I'd like to know what is meant by that. How is it written to make appeal difficult?


Ruling can be constructed in such a way as to defer to a higher court for a ruling. Typically, when you are in a new area of law, a judge will do exactly that. Since the burden of proof for a appeal is abuse of discretion, a ruling written in that way invites judicial oversight.

In this case however, the judge wrote it as if everything were settled law (which you can make a really strong argument that it's not), and also rejected any involvement by the national labor relations board.

There is no such thing as appeal proof, but the judge wrote it in such a way that any appeal here will be a slap at her - something that circuit courts are rarely willing to do.

(and I'm not sure I could read the whole thing and retain what little sanity I have)

It's not that bad. The money quotes are around the NLRB and wither they have any appropriate authority.

That One Guy
04-26-2011, 01:12 PM
i wonder if tom brady et al cared about this. but as long as the top 1% get their super mega million salaries....

That's where the divide will occur. Heck, they could sort it out right now by making that the point. "Yes, the superstars will make more but the average player will make less" and then open up to negotiations with ANY player association that comes forth. Get the majority of the players, the Superstars will eventually come.

lostknight
04-26-2011, 01:17 PM
But that means nothing. In actual practice the higher Court can review and remand or vacate her decision for any reason, or for no tangible reason at all.

No, the standard at this point is "abuse of discretion". On a general appeal, then you can apply a more general standard of wrongly decided.


When I read that portion cutting out the NLRB, I also thought "judicial error."


It's a pretty expansive view of judicial power.

Most importantly of all in the long run, Congress can always change the anti-trust laws and their applicability to the NFL at any time. I think it likely that Congress would act if confronted with a "blown up" NFL that left their constituents unhappy.

This is true.

mkporter
04-26-2011, 01:31 PM
the entire draft process is outside the law, but the players agreed to it for 40+ years. when hte owners didnt did something the players didnt like, the players said "i no longer agree with the terms weve had for 40+ years" and decertified as a union, making everything about the draft and the NFL process illegal. its only outside the law because the players decertified to get leverage and MAKE it outside the law.

The owners were the ones that said they no longer liked the terms of the agreement, and decided to pull the plug, if you recall. They also were fully prepared to lock the players out and sit out a season if need be. They wrote it into their TV contracts.

My feeling is that the players "union" will again agree to the draft, and the two sides will eventually agree on a new CBA, the players will re-unionize, and football will pretty much go on like it has for the past 18 years or so. There will likely be a slotted rookie pay scale, and the payment structure will change a little, and the owners will take home a little more money then they would under the previous CBA. All the other stuff is posturing. The only adults in the room (Judge Nelson, and the appointed mediators to date) see this, and will continue to push for a mediated resolution. Remember that the current CBA is based on the settlement agreement from the big free agency lawsuit back in '92.

Could things go sideways? Yep. But I think in the end both sides know that they shouldn't kill (or maim) the golden goose.

TheReverend
04-26-2011, 01:37 PM
And how exactly were they doing that?

Anti trust exemption

Drek
04-26-2011, 01:43 PM
i wonder if tom brady et al cared about this. but as long as the top 1% get their super mega million salaries....

Pretty much. And the elite players will still get paid.

Look at MLB. The best of the best make $20M plus. But the rookies and other young players? ~150K. Less than half of the NFL minimum. Minor leaguers make more like 30-50K. Sure top picks make good money in bonuses. Elite players have fat contracts. But a lot of the guys who toil away for five or six years in the minors only to play two or three years in the bigs end up retiring having made ~500K or so for 8 years work. I know a lot of people who beat that and aren't unemployed with no marketable skill set for another career.

ant1999e
04-26-2011, 01:56 PM
its still amazing to me that they want to put their employers under their thumb, how they can get this level of leverage on their bosses is incredible...

Can you say unions?

enjolras
04-26-2011, 02:51 PM
I always found the draft an interesting prospect from a CBA standpoint given that the players who enter the draft are not part of the NFLPA until after the draft.


It works because the NFL and NFLPA have entered into collective bargaining. As long as the NFLPA continues to represent the majority of players they have the right to negotiate on behalf of all players (current and future) under labor law.

Although with no collective bargaining entity now, the status of the draft gets a LOT more interesting. It would be entirely possible for an individual player to challenge his draft status in court. If someone doesn't like where they end up, they can absolutely challenge the whole notion of the draft. Since the NFL lost its anti-trust exemption the minute the players decertified (which is what about 50% of Nelsons ruling was dealing with) a challenge is entirely possible.

Boomhauer
04-26-2011, 02:59 PM
It works because the NFL and NFLPA have entered into collective bargaining. As long as the NFLPA continues to represent the majority of players they have the right to negotiate on behalf of all players (current and future) under labor law.

Although with no collective bargaining entity now, the status of the draft gets a LOT more interesting. It would be entirely possible for an individual player to challenge his draft status in court. If someone doesn't like where they end up, they can absolutely challenge the whole notion of the draft. Since the NFL lost its anti-trust exemption the minute the players decertified (which is what about 50% of Nelsons ruling was dealing with) a challenge is entirely possible.

Care to comment on why this hasn't already happened with players that chose not to be part of the Union?
Just sayin AZ, FL, GA, KA, LA, NC, TN, TX and VA are all right to work and your theory hasn't occured before.

lostknight
04-26-2011, 03:18 PM
Although with no collective bargaining entity now, the status of the draft gets a LOT more interesting. It would be entirely possible for an individual player to challenge his draft status in court. If someone doesn't like where they end up, they can absolutely challenge the whole notion of the draft. Since the NFL lost its anti-trust exemption the minute the players decertified (which is what about 50% of Nelsons ruling was dealing with) a challenge is entirely possible.

Without a CBA, the draft itself is illegal. Any team and any player have every right to make any offer to the other.

The draft was ruled illegal as part of the last round of litigation that the NFLPA engaged in.

Mountain Bronco
04-26-2011, 03:24 PM
Your reasoning suggests that the players don't want to voluntarily negotiate a new CBA. If they do that, this ruling means nothing and the NLRB has jurisdiction again. The only reason they don't know is because of the decertification. If the players file for certification and negotiate a new CBA your whole dooms day BS goes out the window.

Not as bad as you portray it, but not a good ruling for the NFL. I will also say that circuit judges hate it when lower courts try to hamstring them and if they want to find a way to overrule, they will.

chrisp
04-26-2011, 04:05 PM
Whilst some of the current machinations and manuverings are insanely complicated, revolving, as they do, around the finer points of the law, the fundamental issues remain quite simple (as I understand it in any case..).

The fundamental issue the league faces is the same one that it has always faced: namely that operating as a league in the first place is illegal - if the clubs work together to agree on anything more that the rules of the game then they are operating as a cartel, which is illegal. That simple fact leaves them wide open, from a legal perspective, to antitrust lawsuits from players. The only thing that can defend them from such lawsuts legally speaking is a collective bargaining agreement with the union.

This fundamental issue - which has always been the case - gives the union a hell of a lot of leverage off the bat. Previous disputes and strikes etc have merely clarified the law, they haven't changed it as far as I know. But the move by the league to lock the players out is a new one, and it was always one I struggled to understand. On what basis, exactly, were the players being locked out? Previous 'stoppages' were strikes by the players. Nice and simple. What the league seemed to be doing here was going 'on strike' in the same way that the players had done previously, saying that they had exactly the same right to withdraw their labour if they didn't like the terms of the deal.

Without getting into the deep detail of the ruling (and I have no desire to either), I get the feeling that this ploy has failed, primarily becuase antitrust legislation is designed specifically to protect individual employees from companies, so it doesn't work the other way around. In other words, the work stoppage when instigated by the league, is seen as an act of collusion by a cartel and is therefore illegal. The law sees the league as a very different kind of animal to the players, and doesn't aknowledge this move as a valid negotiating tactic....

This then gives the league two simple choices for the next way forward:

1) Strike a deal - despite all of the claims and counter-claims both sides probably know what they need to do to get a deal done with the other, they just haven't been prepared to do it up untill now. The new ruling could change this, it all depends upon how much the league were banking on the lockout having validity as a negotiating ploy, or whether it was just a delaying tactic

2) Fight it out - the last player's strike ended without a deal - the CBA was hammered out as a resolution to a bunch of antitrust lawsuits going on in the courts in the wake of said strike. So, the league could be hoping to do the same thing again but get a better outcome. Quite why they would expect this is hard to fathom, as the law hasn't changed, but if they thought the previous deal wasn't fair then they maybe think this is the best way to get a do-over

I don't think there are any other realistic options - I don't see they players going on strike as they are probably better off turning up for work, getting paid, and then suing the hell out of the league in their spare time as a nice little sideline. The league for their part probably think that even if they end up with a CBA very similar to the last one then at least they had a shot at improving their side, and whilst the antitrust lawsuits threaten damages, those damages probably aren't any more scary to the owners than the thought of a CBA much like the last so they probably think they migth as well go for it.

Bottom line, I think we get football, and free agency, albeit not untill just after the draft which will be a little odd, but not that damaging. I feel that this dispute is about to simmer down into the boring legal issue that it always should have been and the only winners will be the lawyers...but lets see. I don't claim to be an expert on any of this stuff, I just know that i know a hell of a lot more about it than I did in December of last year.....

BoulderBum
04-26-2011, 07:29 PM
The fundamental issue the league faces is the same one that it has always faced: namely that operating as a league in the first place is illegal - if the clubs work together to agree on anything more that the rules of the game then they are operating as a cartel, which is illegal. That simple fact leaves them wide open, from a legal perspective, to antitrust lawsuits from players. The only thing that can defend them from such lawsuts legally speaking is a collective bargaining agreement with the union.
Just curious... why did the NHL players not do something similar? Could you expect similar actions from NBA players if they get locked out?

FireFly
04-26-2011, 07:35 PM
If this were the last draft it would damage the NFL more than I care to imagine. THe balance that it brings can't be replaced.

The players are upsetting me...

lostknight
04-27-2011, 08:09 AM
And the players just asked quote "for a new system that does not violate anti-trust laws", ie, no Draft, not Free Agency, no Trades.

Welcome to the new NFL.

DrFate
04-27-2011, 08:15 AM
And the players just asked quote "for a new system that does not violate anti-trust laws", ie, no Draft, not Free Agency, no Trades.

Welcome to the new NFL.

No Cap, no minimum, etc.

gyldenlove
04-27-2011, 08:33 AM
the entire draft process is outside the law, but the players agreed to it for 40+ years. when hte owners didnt did something the players didnt like, the players said "i no longer agree with the terms weve had for 40+ years" and decertified as a union, making everything about the draft and the NFL process illegal. its only outside the law because the players decertified to get leverage and MAKE it outside the law.

No, what is outside the law is locking out employees who are not unionized and making league wide rules that restrict the ability of unemployed players to seek employment with any team they wish.

Those things were only accepted because they were negotiated through a CBA, now that there is no CBA those things are illegal, the owners took a gamble and did it anyway in an attempt to force the players to accept a lesser deal than what they have knowing that if the players see it through the court case could catch up to negotiations and become very expensive for the owners given that players could in the end win large punitive damages.

DrFate
04-27-2011, 09:06 AM
No, what is outside the law is locking out employees who are not unionized

This ignores the fact that the decertification is a sham

chrisp
04-27-2011, 09:23 AM
Just curious... why did the NHL players not do something similar? Could you expect similar actions from NBA players if they get locked out?

Curious myself! have to be honest I'm a brit who follows the NFL so I read a lot about the NFL stuff but I don't really follow other US sports so I don't pick up anything on those.....theoretically the exact same laws apply in the exact same way, but a lot depends on what has been agreed in the past. I don't claim to be an expert on the NFL but I do at least feel like I have a grasp of what's going on. I definitely know nothing about the labour situation in other sports though...

TheChamp24
04-27-2011, 10:11 AM
What would stop owners from completely lowering contracts for all players, even the high target guys?
Say Phillip Rivers becomes a free agent and wants $15 million, but no owner will give him more than $5 million?
I could see collusion, but couldn't the owners say basically they only want to spend certain amount for a particular job?

DrFate
04-27-2011, 10:15 AM
What would stop owners from completely lowering contracts for all players, even the high target guys?
Say Phillip Rivers becomes a free agent and wants $15 million, but no owner will give him more than $5 million?
I could see collusion, but couldn't the owners say basically they only want to spend certain amount for a particular job?

Didn't work for MLB...

http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Baseball_collusion

oubronco
04-27-2011, 10:17 AM
What would stop owners from completely lowering contracts for all players, even the high target guys?
Say Phillip Rivers becomes a free agent and wants $15 million, but no owner will give him more than $5 million?
I could see collusion, but couldn't the owners say basically they only want to spend certain amount for a particular job?

Exactly what I wanted to know if they all got together and worked together they could really screw the players

DrFate
04-27-2011, 10:19 AM
Exactly what I wanted to know if they all got together and worked together they could really screw the players

The baseball owners already did this - that's what collusion is.

http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Baseball_collusion

If the NFL owners get in a room and say 'we will keep salaries down', the players sue and the owners have to pay treble damages. It never ends well.

"The owners agreed to pay the players $280 million, with the MLBPA deciding how to distribute the money to the damaged players"

That figure would be in the billions for NFL owners (20 years later to boot, think of how salaries have increased since 1990)

(i'm not saying it's right/wrong, i'm saying it's what would happen)

oubronco
04-27-2011, 10:21 AM
How could they sue them without something in place stating so

DrFate
04-27-2011, 10:27 AM
If Pepsi and Coke got together and set the 'going price' for soda - that's illegal too. The entire premise behind antitrust law is that suppliers/employers can't get together and rig the prices.

The entire concept of antitrust is that it prevents competition. As I understand it, professional sports leagues are exempt because 1) congress says so and 2) they have an agreement with NFL unions.

If the owners got together and tried to 'fix' salaries (beyond what is agreed upon in the CBA by the union) - that's lawsuit city.

Beantown Bronco
04-27-2011, 10:31 AM
Exactly what I wanted to know if they all got together and worked together they could really screw the players

All it takes is one disgruntled or rogue owner to mess up everything though. Just one.

It amazes me that owners would ever get caught colluding. If done by anyone with half a brain, and presumably billionnaire owners would have half a brain, it should be impossible to prove.

oubronco
04-27-2011, 10:32 AM
But there is no cba or union in place right

tsiguy96
04-27-2011, 10:33 AM
No, what is outside the law is locking out employees who are not unionized and making league wide rules that restrict the ability of unemployed players to seek employment with any team they wish.

Those things were only accepted because they were negotiated through a CBA, now that there is no CBA those things are illegal, the owners took a gamble and did it anyway in an attempt to force the players to accept a lesser deal than what they have knowing that if the players see it through the court case could catch up to negotiations and become very expensive for the owners given that players could in the end win large punitive damages.

those things are NOT illegal because there is no CBA, they are illegal because the players DECERTIFIED. you said it yourself:
what is outside the law is locking out employees who are not unionized

the REASON the players decertified was to make it illegal thus giving them legal grounds to sue. so when something happened to the players they didnt like, they said we will no longer be a union to sue.

Tombstone RJ
04-27-2011, 10:45 AM
Why you say players? What do you mean? Remember that there is no mandated players. That means a top talent - say Cam Newton - can choose to directly approach teams, and there is nothing that anyone can do about that.

Yah, I think the players want to do away with the draft so that they get the benefits of FA right out of college. If the players didn't have to deal with the draft, then their services go to the highest bidder.

That being said, if the highest bidder only offers said player (Cam Newton, for example) $1 million and a 5 year contract, then what can Cam do? Why can't the NFL act like a cartel to control their costs? It's a double edge sword.

The only way a player like Cam can increase his leverage, is to start a whole new league.

This judge is playing with fire.

DrFate
04-27-2011, 10:53 AM
But there is no cba or union in place right

that doesn't matter

if all the pizza shops in NY got together and said 'we will only pay pizza chefs X dollars' - it's still considered anti-competitive and illegal.

In theory, without the CBA or the union, the draft is illegal, free agency is illegal, etc. Anything that makes player movement in the NFL different than employee movement in the car wash industry or the electrician industry or whatever.

DrFate
04-27-2011, 10:53 AM
Why can't the NFL act like a cartel to control their costs?

Cartels are illegal in this (and most) countries

mkporter
04-27-2011, 10:57 AM
Yah, I think the players want to do away with the draft so that they get the benefits of FA right out of college. If the players didn't have to deal with the draft, then their services go to the highest bidder.

That being said, if the highest bidder only offers said player (Cam Newton, for example) $1 million and a 5 year contract, then what can Cam do? Why can't the NFL act like a cartel to control their costs? It's a double edge sword.

The only way a player like Cam can increase his leverage, is to start a whole new league.

This judge is playing with fire.

They could try but they would be opening themselves up to a pretty massive liability.

bronco militia
04-27-2011, 11:02 AM
I could live without the draft....some of you go full retard this time of year

DrFate
04-27-2011, 11:06 AM
Imagine what the landscape looks like...

(some of the agents have already said 'why should we have a draft?')

Players can try to sign whatever contract they want with whatever team they want, whenever they want. There is no 'free agency period'. I'm not sure how they could keep out college players (or high school players, for that matter).

Cam Newton can call 32 GMs and ask 'what will you give me?' He can take the highest offer, the longest offer, or the offer from his favorite team. It's no different than me taking a different IT job (for whatever reason I choose)

You might get a 1 year deal, you might get a lifetime deal. Once your deal is up, you shop yourself again. There is no 'getting released', because the contracts will be as binding as any in the business world. There are no trades (you can't exactly trade the guy in the cubicle next door in the real world).

Being an NFL player is no different than being a lawyer or an electrician. Jerry Jones can spend as much money as he has, and the Bengals/Cardinals/Bill can spend as little as they want.

oubronco
04-27-2011, 11:15 AM
Imagine what the landscape looks like...

(some of the agents have already said 'why should we have a draft?')

Players can try to sign whatever contract they want with whatever team they want, whenever they want. There is no 'free agency period'. I'm not sure how they could keep out college players (or high school players, for that matter).

Cam Newton can call 32 GMs and ask 'what will you give me?' He can take the highest offer, the longest offer, or the offer from his favorite team. It's no different than me taking a different IT job (for whatever reason I choose)

You might get a 1 year deal, you might get a lifetime deal. Once your deal is up, you shop yourself again. There is no 'getting released', because the contracts will be as binding as any in the business world. There are no trades (you can't exactly trade the guy in the cubicle next door in the real world).

Being an NFL player is no different than being a lawyer or an electrician. Jerry Jones can spend as much money as he has, and the Bengals/Cardinals/Bill can spend as little as they want.

In that case it would be a terrible product and the fans would stop caring and spend their money on a better product cause who wants to see the same 3-4 teams win it every year

DrFate
04-27-2011, 11:35 AM
In that case it would be a terrible product and the fans would stop caring and spend their money on a better product cause who wants to see the same 3-4 teams win it every year

I tend to agree with you. Although not 100% identical, this is what MLB has seen. They have guaranteed deals, no cap, and no minimum (that I'm aware of)

While it's true some small market teams have done well, it's also true that the Pirates haven't had a winning season in 18 YEARS. Teams like PIT, KC, MIL, etc. will never compete with the Yankees and Red Sox.

Tombstone RJ
04-27-2011, 11:45 AM
Cartels are illegal in this (and most) countries

The health insurance industry is a cartel (at least this is what I have heard about them). Why does the government allow this?

OPEC is a cartel.

DrFate
04-27-2011, 06:56 PM
The health insurance industry is a cartel (at least this is what I have heard about them). Why does the government allow this?

OPEC is a cartel.

I'd need more information about the health industry to comment (although it does seem to be a racket) :)

OPEC is a cartel (but they aren't subject to US law). I don't think OPEC is made up of companies per se, but rather governments of oil-rich nations.

http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Cartel

OPEC is the best example of how a group can control production/rig prices with no competition.

Rabb
04-27-2011, 07:52 PM
Hearing that the judge denied the stay, ****'s gonna' get real here in the next 24 hours kids

TheChamp24
04-28-2011, 07:38 AM
NFL is close to be going down the wrong path.
I mean, look at other sports. These terrible teams bring up good talent, but trade them away before they have to pay them top dollar and get more young talent to groom. Kansas City, Pittsburgh, these teams are like the farm teams to the big teams.
Also, if there is no draft, what would be stopping NFL owners going to college athletes during their freshman, sophomore seasons and trying to get them to an agreement before they are eligible?
Also, goodbye to teams like Cincy, Cleveland maybe, Buffalo, etc ever being competitive again.
It'll be like the NBA where we've had like 5 different NBA champions the past 20 years.

bendog
04-28-2011, 07:56 AM
If the owners wanted a cba all they had to do was offer the players the same cba they had in 2010. It's not the players rewriting anything. Fool yourselves all you want. That's the reality of it. It may be that the owners aren't lying about the possibility that somewhere down the road some team like Car will lose money, but even the owners are not claiming some owner actually loses money.

bendog
04-28-2011, 07:58 AM
If Pepsi and Coke got together and set the 'going price' for soda - that's illegal too. The entire premise behind antitrust law is that suppliers/employers can't get together and rig the prices.

The entire concept of antitrust is that it prevents competition. As I understand it, professional sports leagues are exempt because 1) congress says so and 2) they have an agreement with NFL unions.

If the owners got together and tried to 'fix' salaries (beyond what is agreed upon in the CBA by the union) - that's lawsuit city.

You misunderstand it. Only MLB has an antitrust exemption. The NFL is only exempt from antitrust because the players union agreed not to sue them and accept in exchange the cba that the owners no refuse to renew under the terms bargained by Tagliabobo and Upshaw.

DrFate
04-28-2011, 10:26 AM
You misunderstand it. Only MLB has an antitrust exemption. The NFL is only exempt from antitrust because the players union agreed not to sue them and accept in exchange the cba that the owners no refuse to renew under the terms bargained by Tagliabobo and Upshaw.

I've also read that only MLB has a 'full' exemption, whatever that means.

The NFL has something (that may well be predicated on a union/CBA)

I wish there was an 'antitrust for dummies' i could buy

:)