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NBA players have been mailed cards that will begin the process of re-forming their union, according to a source. Players have been asked to return the cards as soon as possible to expedite the potential reformation, which is necessary before the league and players can formally conclude negotiations on a new collective bargaining agreement.

David Aldridge at NBA.com


Why is this taking so long? Can’t they do this by having teams meet and vote? Can’t they FedEx the proxy cards to the players? Does anyone trust the postal service during the holiday season to get the cards returned in time for the deadline just 8 days away now?

This isn’t some trivial matter after all. The players have 8 days to reform the union they disclaimed on Nov. 14th. If they fail to receive the needed votes by that date, then it is back to chaos. The court case is renewed and the fear of a lost season is renewed.

So, why are the players using the mail service to deliver the cards? This isn’t something we want to leave in the government’s hands is it? If you had something that you needed delivered fast, would you use the U.S. Postal Service?

Now, maybe David Aldridge was just implying that the cards had been sent and that could be using any of a number of services including email, FedEx, UPS or the USPS. What I don’t understand is why a voice vote from the player representatives wouldn’t suffice. We aren’t talking about recertifying the union because it wasn’t decertified. It only took an announcement from Billy Hunter and Derek Fisher to disclaim the union after all. The players didn’t vote on it. The player reps met with the union leaders and they came away with the decision to disclaim the union. So, why does it take a vote from all the players to reclaim the union?

It’s probably all a moot point. It only takes half the players in the league to approve the motion. If the players really want to play as has been their rallying cry during the lockout, then enough of the players will vote to recertify in time to get the season started on time but it does raise questions about the union and how it operates.

This is the same group that NBA commissioner David Stern told in 2007 about the owners’ desires in the new Collective Bargaining Agreement, but did little to prepare a strategy on how to fight it or educate their membership on the seriousness of the issues facing the players.

This is the same union that needed to disclaim interest in negotiations to get a deal done as well.

This is the same union whose website is closed currently despite that being the logical spot for players and fans to go to learn about the particulars of the new deal.

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