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 Post subject: NFL v. Brady
PostPosted: Fri Jun 03, 2011 7:28 pm 
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Location: Scotch Plains, NJ
The Eighth Circuit held oral argument in this case today. A great summary is at the following link:

http://prawfsblawg.blogs.com/prawfsblaw ... ow-it.html

My favorite part:
Quote:
That's why this injunction may not matter that much.  Let's say the court holds that Norris-LaGuardia prohibits the injunction.  Well, that only removes the injunction against the lockout; it does not mean that the NFL won't ultimately be liable for antitrust violations.  In fact, Judge Benton seemed to indicate that antitrust damages would continue to accrue even if the lockout could not be enjoined under the NLA.  Or, let's say that the injunction is lifted because the nonstatutory labor exemption still applies.  Well, even Clement admitted it can't apply forever -- so how long?  Clement seemed to be pushing for at least a year, but Benton seemed comfortable with six months -- which would be, according to his calculations, September 11.  Would the antitrust violations and the injunction kick back in then?

So the hearing ultimately convinced me that (a) the players took a truly radical move by disclaiming and (b) this problem is not going away, even after the Eighth Circuit rules on the injunction.  I had thought that the longer the lockout lasts, the more it favors the owners -- players need paychecks after all.  But what if the longer it lasts, the more antitrust damages that pile up against the league?  It's one thing for players to resist a deal in the hopes that the league will cave before they do.  That's a hard one to win, and I think the NBPA showed how disastrous such a strategy can be in the late 1990s.  But what if the players resist a deal in the hopes that one day soon, it will be all free agency all the time.  No draft, no salary cap, no restrictions whatsoever.  Could you hold on for a few more months in the hope that there's no salary cap -- hard, soft, or otherwise?  Seems like a lot more to fight for.

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