Sports Illustrated’s Zach Lowe reports that the NBPA’s charge of unfair labor practices and failure to negotiate in good faith has “finished investigation into (the) union’s complaint.” Final briefs are expected next week.
The odds of a different result than the NFL garnered are pretty small, but the effect would be devastating for the owners… for about thirty seconds before they appeal and this thing enters legal purgatory. The owners can’t lose this fight, so they’d have to keep appealing, which would be costly. Then again, they’ve literally stopped their business, so what’s a few more million on top of it?
Meanwhile, everything continues according to plan, with both sides following the same playbook legally they were expected to. And that’s really been part of the issue. Both sides continue to follow the playbook line by line with no deviation. If there’s going to be a season, something’s going to have to deviate from the expected pattern, otherwise both sides are just charging headlong into losing the entire year.
The swiftness and decisiveness of the decision may give us some insight into how organized the Union is at this point.