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Players union labor complaint will drag out another month or two

Jul 26, 2011, 10:56 AM EDT

Billy Hunter AP

The NBA players union has not chosen to decertify and have players sue the league. Yet.

So far they have gone a different route, filing a complaint with the National Labor Relations Board (NLRB) — the federal agency that oversees labor relations —saying the owners were not negotiating in good faith.

Now, the league is going to present evidence, including witnesses, to the NLRB to bolster its defense against the complaint, according to Sports Business Daily (via I am a GM). What does that mean? It means things are just dragging out longer.

The NBA will present evidence and witnesses in the National Labor Relations Board investigation of the National Basketball Players Association’s unfair labor practices charge, an attorney for the union said last week….

Larry Katz, outside counsel to the NBPA, said the NBA’s decision to provide evidence and witnesses will delay action by the board by at least 30 to 60 days. Katz previously has said he was hopeful the NLRB would issue a complaint as soon as the end of this month.

It has been suggested that union director Billy Hunter does not want to go the decertification route until the NLRB rules. Which now will take longer.

It just adds to the frustration — the NFL has solved its labor problems and while the NBA was always on a different timeline the heads of the two sides — Hunter and David Stern — are not yet even set to meet. Kind of hard to come up with a new Collective Bargaining Agreement if you’re not even trying.

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