Feb 8, 2010, 11:31 AM EST
Adonal Foyle has not played a single minute of NBA action all season, but he may very well be one of the most important players in the league. Not only is Foyle something of a Renaissance man, but he’s also the first vice president of the NBA Players’ Association (NBAPA). On a day-to-day, game-to-game basis, that may not mean all that much. But considering the collision course between the league and the NBAPA that is likely to delay the 2011 season with a lockout, Foyle is in a peculiarly powerful position.
In general, when Adonal Foyle speaks, you should listen. He’s as intriguing as NBA personalities get, and a generally enlightened human being. And when Adonal Foyle speaks on the negotiations over the collective bargaining agreement, you should listen, take notes, analyze, dissect, and digest every syllable. From Josh Robbins of the Orlando Sentinel, here’s Foyle’s response to the league’s latest posturing:
“I think doing that is probably the fatal flaw, because if there is
one way to unite the entire NBA against a single thing it would be to
go after everybody,” Foyle told the Orlando Sentinel before the Magic
tipped-off against the Boston Celtics at TD Garden. “I think what this
proposal has done has done us a favor. It has basically mobilized all
“Guys are calling. Guys what to know what’s happening and they want
to get involved. So, I am in a way happy that they [the owners] did
what they did, because I think now they have awakened not only the
players who have been constantly involved in these kinds of
negotiations, but they’ve awakened the guys that would have been on the
outside looking in.”
The NBA is not only demanding that the maximum salary and length of contracts be reduced, but that any changes from the new agreement be applied to ALL active deals. That means that every gaudy, overpaid former star is now up in arms and feeling wronged. Every apathetic role player with a long-term contract is suddenly passionate about the cause.
Every movement needs a rallying cry, and if Foyle is correct, the NBAPA may have just gotten theirs. “No taxation without representation!” “Equal treatment, equal pay!” And now, “No retroactively applying aspects of the new collective bargaining agreement to established player contracts!”
…not as catchy, I know. They’re working on it.
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