The players may not like the deal that is on the table right now. But the sobering reality is it might be the one they have to take.
Count Chris Duhon, the union representative for the Magic, in the camp of begrudgingly accepting the deal. Before stepping into the union representative meeting this morning, Duhon tweeted that he would accept the deal on behalf of the Orlando Magic. A follower of Duhon’s responded with praise for Duhon’s decision to take the deal as the representative of the team to which Duhon replied: “This deal sucks.“
That is the cold, hard reality the players surely must be debating right now. There are rumors that the players will offer several revisions to the current deal in hope of making something happen today, fearing that David Stern will follow through on his threat and make the next proposal a whole lot worse.
Sean Deveney of Sporting News reports that Duhon does not personally like the deal, but after talking to several teammates, his team would. As their representative, it his job to represent their interests.
The question then becomes whether this sentiment is proliferating throughout the league. Orlando does have the second highest payroll in the league, and so there are a lot of guys who likely would rather play and earn their salaries than lose out on that opportunity. There is no telling if other teams have similar feelings or how many other union reps are willing to reject or accept this deal.
It appears more and more that the opinions of players are becoming fractured as they stare down this ultimatum. They may support the union no matter its decision coming out of today’s meeting, but it is also clear that the players are a little more divided on what to actually do. The meeting today is supposed to be open to any player who wishes to attend and not just the player representatives. It is important to remember this is a decision that every player has to live with and eventually vote upon. The decertification or disclaimer of interest movement is waiting the results of today’s meeting before taking any further action.
There are going to be a lot of issues to sort out at the meeting today before the union and the owners head back to the bargaining table. Everyone better have their ducks in a row and understand what is at stake and what each decision could ultimately mean.