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Dean Spanos laments lockout, blames union

Spanos-Deno

Plenty of NFL teams have had plenty to say about the events of the Friday, and we’ve been sharing all of them with you, right here.

What the hell else are we going to talk about?

The latest to arrive in our “in” box comes from Chargers president Dean Spanos, one of the ten men who tried to negotiate a new labor deal.

“I’m extremely disappointed in the Union’s decision to decertify, which led to the League’s difficult but necessary step to lock out, something we tried hard to avoid,” Spanos said.  “The most efficient way to get a new deal done is through mediation and negotiation; not through litigation. The lawyers are the only winners in litigation. The fans, players and teams all lose. Unfortunately this action by the Union only delays the process.”

We disagree with a couple of things Spanos said in that initial paragraph.  Though the decision to decertify chronologically led to the decision to lock the players out, it didn’t causally lead to the lockout.  With or without decertification and litigation, the league most likely would have implemented the lockout at midnight on March 12.  The union’s actions merely give the league someone to blame other than the league itself.

“I’m disappointed for the fans who care about the Chargers and this game we all love.  I feel badly for our players. They’re good men that just want to play football and win a championship, but they’re caught in the middle,” Spanos added.

We wonder whether Spanos will say the same thing after he moves the team to Los Angeles.

“I’m most disappointed in the actions of the Union’s leadership that is supposed to be representing all of our players. They clearly were not negotiating in good faith right from the beginning. I believe their intention all along was to decertify and bring us to litigation,” Spanos said.

Yes, but the union leadership believes that decertification and litigation will help the players get the best possible deal.  This isn’t about DeMaurice Smith trying to max out his profile; not decertifying and taking a lockout would have done that.  The players pursued the course of action that they thought would deliver the best outcome, and the league will do the same.

“The Chargers will continue to do everything within the League rules to prepare to win a championship,” Spanos said, implying a level of aggressiveness that no team can really employ, since there’s no envelope to really push when the players are locked out.  “Currently we’re preparing for a very important draft and will be ready to take advantage of all opportunities to improve our team.”  (During a lockout, the draft is the only opportunity to improve the team.)

“We will get through this,” Spanos said.  “There will be a new agreement and we’re looking forward to playing football this season.  In the end, the final result will be an agreement that is good for the fans, fair for the players and teams, and will allow this game to grow and prosper in San Diego.”

It’s way too early for Spanos to suggest that football will be played this season.  “If the NFL manages to shoot down the decertification in court, the lockout will remain in force until the union caves in to the league’s demands.  And if it means missing games, then games will be missed.

And then all the teams will issue statements expressing regret, and blaming the union for forcing the league’s hand.

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41 Responses to “Dean Spanos laments lockout, blames union”
  1. Canyonero says: Mar 12, 2011 7:27 PM

    Most news-worthy thing here is the statement the Chargers have fans. Didn’t know that.

  2. Kave Krew says: Mar 12, 2011 7:30 PM

    Ahhhhh, another #winner……first Mike Brown, and now Spanos……

    Bring on the Bidwells for the trifecta……….

  3. steelergold says: Mar 12, 2011 7:32 PM

    Just another hollow head talking to make himself feel better.

  4. yeauright says: Mar 12, 2011 7:37 PM

    everyone in this money grab is to blame. if you’re a fan of the nfl then you’re on the losing end.

  5. 3octaveFart says: Mar 12, 2011 7:39 PM

    “…which led to the League’s difficult but necessary step to lock out, something we tried hard to avoid,”

    Hilarious, considering that was the owners plan all along till Doty took away their war chest.

  6. oldhamletman says: Mar 12, 2011 7:40 PM

    now that the NFLPA is no longer a union…. what stops the owners with pulling a Regan on the Air Traffic Controllers and fire them all?

    I’d love to see a completely reorganized league with players signed for market based on their merits…

    fire them all…

  7. rostse says: Mar 12, 2011 7:43 PM

    The players need the money! Did you see how hard that one player got hit this year?

  8. lennydpocketqb says: Mar 12, 2011 7:46 PM

    Chargers? Championship? Bwahahahahaha!

  9. johndank says: Mar 12, 2011 7:49 PM

    “Most news-worthy thing here is the statement the Chargers have fans. Didn’t know that.”

    and how is that?

  10. johndank says: Mar 12, 2011 7:50 PM

    Chargers? Championship? Bwahahahahaha!

    wats so funny? u stupid or something?

  11. liontomyself says: Mar 12, 2011 7:52 PM

    3octaveFart says:

    Hilarious, considering that was the owners plan all along till Doty took away their war chest.

    —————-

    Till???

    Did I miss something or did the lock out happen regardless of Dotys’ ruling? I mean there is a lock out right now, correct?

    The union still forced it….the league just attempted to be prepared for it.

  12. erstwhiledoc says: Mar 12, 2011 7:54 PM

    Reminds me of some companies I’ve worked for: their main product is public relations.

  13. dixon29 says: Mar 12, 2011 7:56 PM

    The players deserve the lion’s share of the blame here. The owners aren’t innocent completely but the players are the reason why the 2011 season is in jeopardy.

  14. tomosbornesretirementcostjoepaatitle says: Mar 12, 2011 8:00 PM

    Do not fear America, I have the solution to this labor dilemma. You would be hard pressed to find anyone who would dispute we are the entertainment capital of the world. To that end we should have entertainers settle this matter.

    To this end I propose that we pit Clint Eastwood, representing the million dollar babies (aka players), versus Alice Cooper, representing the billion dollar babies (aka the owners) in a steel cage, glass fisted, tiajuana rules fight. Winner has the last proposal made as the new labor rules for football.

    I just need some light to guide me through the depression known as baseball season.

  15. liontomyself says: Mar 12, 2011 8:02 PM

    ” the league most likely would have implemented the lockout at midnight on March 12″

    The league couldn’t have gone with the last best offer if the union did not decertify?

    ““The Chargers will continue to do everything within the League rules to prepare to win a championship,” Spanos said, implying a level of aggressiveness that no team can really employ, since there’s no envelope to really push when the players are locked out.”

    What is wrong with saying that? The coaches can’t research players? They can’t monitor player recoveries? Just because players aren’t there doesn’t mean they can’t “aggressively” prepare the other important aspects of a team.

    “It’s way too early for Spanos to suggest that football will be played this season.”

    Since when is it illegal to be optimistic at ANY point in time?

    “And then all the teams will issue statements expressing regret, and blaming the union for forcing the league’s hand.”

    As they should since union decertification was set in motion when the union agreed to allow the opt out clause in the last CBA. Everyone knew it was a bad deal for the owners and the union would never take a penny less than the last CBA allowed.

  16. clintonportisheadd says: Mar 12, 2011 8:05 PM

    Another guy who INHERITED his team whining about his lot in life. Notice a trend here?

    And if Spanos is so concerned with the fans, why is he playing footsies with the AEG folks up in LA to move the team up there.

    Hypocrite. Greedy bastard. Tool.

  17. clintonportisheadd says: Mar 12, 2011 8:08 PM

    oldhamletman says: Mar 12, 2011 7:40 PM

    now that the NFLPA is no longer a union…. what stops the owners with pulling a Regan on the Air Traffic Controllers and fire them all?

    —————————

    A anti trust lawsuit and TREBLE damages under the Sherman Act. Not to mention no one (well maybe YOU) will pay NFL prices to see UFL talent. And the networks are not paying Mercedes rights fees for Kia caliber football.

    Any other dumb questions?

  18. unselfishone says: Mar 12, 2011 8:09 PM

    I dont feel sorry for Dean Spanos.

    He is the type of owner who makes it easy to cheeer for the players sometimes. He cuts players as soon as they slip in value or due to injury, he has the most hardliner GM in the business, and he took full adantage of the restricted free agent rules with no long term CBA this past year.

    It is just ridiculous that the owners are now saying that negotiations cannot occur while litigation occurs. It happens all the time in civil cases and often is the only way those cases settle. It makes me wonder what exactly the owners are trying to avoid? I know-maybe having to actually share all their financial info and behind the scenes shenanigans with a judge in an anti trust trial.

    I am also confiused. The owners made an offer and obviously it was rejected. There is nothing that keeps them from sending the attorneys for the players in the lawsuit another offer. Otherwise, they made their best offer and so if it was rejected and the union is standing by their prior offer-why would they request more mediation?

    This is nothing but blustering PR by the owners to make fans take sides. tell them to save their testimony for the courtroom when they are under oath. I might actually believe it then.

  19. vanderwerf says: Mar 12, 2011 8:25 PM

    ha… Dean do you have to get permission from A.J. to talk to the media? scared biatch

  20. purdueman says: Mar 12, 2011 8:29 PM

    Dean Spanos’ legacy is that he’s a member of the “lucky sperm club”; I’d be very surprised if he’s ever worked an honest day in his entire life (excluding of course whatever cushy jobs his rich Daddy may have given him during summers). Rumor also has it that he was dropped on his head at birth too!

    In other words, Dean Spandex has ZERO credibility and mark my words, he WILL execute the Chargers Qualcomm Stadium out clause and move the Chargers to LA at the end of next season. Dean’s always been first and foremost all about Dean.

  21. morebrocato says: Mar 12, 2011 8:30 PM

    Though the decision to decertify chronologically led to the decision to lock the players out, it didn’t causally lead to the lockout. With or without decertification and litigation, the league most likely would have implemented the lockout at midnight on March 12. The union’s actions merely give the league someone to blame other than the league itself.

    Though any lawyer can say any thing…I think you have to permit the NFL to have a small case here. The union could have decertified after the lockout, but they decided to do so before-hand. Everyone knows that deals can still happen at the 11th hour. The NFL DOES have someone else it can blame.

    What actually happens and doesn’t happen matters a whole lot more than ‘what most likely would have happened’ and ‘what probably will happen’.

  22. purdueman says: Mar 12, 2011 8:33 PM

    I have no dog in the NFLPU vs. the billionaire owners current labor squabble, but I will say this… with arrogant a_hole NFL owners like Spanos (San Diego), Al Davis (Oakland), and Jerry Jones (Dallas), would YOU trust the owners? I sure wouldn’t!… not without being able to inspect the books anyways.

    At the end of the day, the only real issue that I think that the players have is some assurance that the owners aren’t lying through their teeth and presenting cooked books while claiming poverty!

  23. oldcracker says: Mar 12, 2011 8:39 PM

    “Though the decision to decertify chronologically led to the decision to lock the players out, it didn’t causally lead to the lockout. With or without decertification and litigation, the league most likely would have implemented the lockout at midnight on March 12. The union’s actions merely give the league someone to blame other than the league itself.”

    If it came as such a surprise to these billionaire owners, why did they have Lockout insurance? Hell, we fans have been hearing about this for over a year now.

    Between the insurance money and the $9 Billion in question, the owners can’t afford to keep the other employees paid? (Jets cut salaries)

    Plus, taxpayers keep paying for their new playgrounds.

    Folks, these owners are billionaires for a reason!!

  24. laeaglefan says: Mar 12, 2011 9:18 PM

    “And then all the teams will issue statements expressing regret, and blaming the union for forcing the league’s hand”

    And they will be right. Seems to me that the Union turned down a pretty good deal at the end there. The fact that the NFL offered to extend the deadline again no doubt meant that there was even more room for negotiation, but the Union made the decision that they’d get a better deal in court than through the negotiating process. They may well be right about that, but at what cost? No one knows the answer to that now, but the longer this goes on, the more the cost will surely be.

  25. oldhamletman says: Mar 12, 2011 9:22 PM

    clintonportisheadd says:

    A anti trust lawsuit and TREBLE damages under the Sherman Act. Not to mention no one (well maybe YOU) will pay NFL prices to see UFL talent. And the networks are not paying Mercedes rights fees for Kia caliber football.

    ==================

    only if owners were stupid enough to conspire to do so… which they’ve clearly demonstrated they aren’t…

    there are many talented people in the world… if the current players were fired and there was true open competition for spots… I’d bet there would be top flight games within one year…

    putting out a blanket description of current NFL players as Mercedes is kinda funny….

    … any more dumb answers?

  26. jefedejefes13 says: Mar 12, 2011 9:38 PM

    Dischargers will prepare to win a championship?
    Not in your lifetime spanos, not in your lifetime.

  27. liontomyself says: Mar 12, 2011 9:51 PM

    clintonportisheadd says:

    Not to mention no one (well maybe YOU) will pay NFL prices to see UFL talent. And the networks are not paying Mercedes rights fees for Kia caliber football.

    _____________

    Honestly, I’d much rather watch the league pay scabs and UFL players than have the players run the league. Let’s see how long the league lasts with the players paying for the stadiums, the medical, the taxes and sharing THEIR revenue. I.E. the players need the league as much as the league needs the players….don’t kid yourself.

  28. endzonezombie says: Mar 12, 2011 9:57 PM

    “The union could have decertified after the lockout, but they decided to do so before-hand.”

    @morebrocato: The NFLPA had to file decertification by 5PM on Friday – 7 hrs. before the CBA expiration. The NFL locked out after the expiration of the CBA.

  29. lennydpocketqb says: Mar 12, 2011 9:59 PM

    Chargers winning a championship? That’s awesome that they are thinking so positive like that. LOLOLOLOLOL!!!!

  30. thefiesty1 says: Mar 12, 2011 10:26 PM

    Kave Krew hit the nail on the head. Wait until we here from McNair and Bud Adams.

  31. Deb says: Mar 12, 2011 10:40 PM

    @oldhamletman …

    I’d love it if you were suddenly fired Monday morning but you’re probably some retired guy living off a pension negotiated for you by a union.

  32. txchief says: Mar 12, 2011 10:42 PM

    clintonportisheadd shows his true motivations once again. He is a jealous socialist who believes that utopia will be achieved when those he dislikes or disagrees with have all of their assets confiscated and redistributed. oldcracker is there with him. Most with their mindset have produced little and insist they are entitled to much.

  33. endzonezombie says: Mar 12, 2011 10:48 PM

    Charger fans stopped listening to Spanos’ BS long ago.

  34. clintonportisheadd says: Mar 13, 2011 1:19 AM

    oldhamletman says: Mar 12, 2011 9:22 PM

    clintonportisheadd says:

    A anti trust lawsuit and TREBLE damages under the Sherman Act. Not to mention no one (well maybe YOU) will pay NFL prices to see UFL talent. And the networks are not paying Mercedes rights fees for Kia caliber football.

    ==================

    only if owners were stupid enough to conspire to do so… which they’ve clearly demonstrated they aren’t…

    ————————-

    It doesn’t require proof of a “conspiracy”. And you obviously are no student of history. The NFL already lost an anti trust lawsuit once when the USFL sued them.

    Heres my suggestion. Don’t post here if you don’t want to be schooled.

  35. godzilla68 says: Mar 13, 2011 1:42 AM

    As a Charger fan, every time Dean Spanos opens his mouth I am reminded why SD doesn’t have a Super Bowl ring. = /

  36. 6thsense79 says: Mar 13, 2011 10:33 AM

    You guys who don’t believe that at the owners had been attempting to lock out the players all along before Dotty’s ruling haven’t really been following these negotiations.

    The owners strong armed the networks into giving them $4 billion even if they locked out the players and games were not played in 2011.

    At the beggining of negotiations when the NFLPA made an offer of splitting the revenue 50-50 did the Owners counter? No they walked out of negotiations and called the offer a slap in the face. According to ESPN’s John Clayton no offer (short of the players accepting the Owner’s demands) would have preventing the Owners from walking away during that first meeting back in February.

    From mid February when the Owner’s walked away from negotiations to the end of March there were no significant negotiation or counter offer from the owner’s side. Then 2 days before the CBA was set to expire Doty ruled the owners could not use that $4 billion lockout insurance and by definition of the CBA did not maximize profits and ruled that a percentage of that $4 billion is actually player money again as defined under CBA.

    Well as those who has followed this should know the whole tone of negotiations changed. Suddenly the owners were back at the table. More negotiation got done during those two does and through the agreed negotiation extension than was done in 1 year.

    Yet some of you don’t believe that until the Doty rulling the owners were planning a lockout. I know some of you have your dogs in this fight, who to blame, etc but on this issue the actions of the owners before the Doty ruling clearly showed their intentions.

  37. jcdavey2011 says: Mar 13, 2011 10:33 AM

    of course he’ll say the same thing when he moves the chargers to LA, because the quote you used didn’t mention ‘san diego’ lol duh

  38. souldogdave says: Mar 13, 2011 10:53 AM

    Once again, a fat cat lies through his teeth. The owners make big money, more every year. On the backs of young athletes who try so hard they are killing themselves to win. Spanos did well by drafting a few key guys, who are getting older. No more LT, Phil will term out, their best receiver hates them, etc.

  39. Deb says: Mar 13, 2011 2:23 PM

    @txchief …

    Yes, yes, dear … everyone who questions the motives of Big Business, Big Banks, and Wall Street is a socialist. Funny how the capitalists have such problems with players earning what the market will pay based on the revenues they generate … which is a fundamental principle of capitalism. And funny how the capitalists didn’t mind a redistribution of wealth when it was redistributed in the form of bailouts to banks and Wall Street firms that had run their businesses–and the global economy–into the ground. They simply used these unsecured loans to regroup, pay themselves huge bonuses, and screw the rest of us. Now they’re back to business as usual and we can probably expect another freefall in the near future.

    Ah … capitalism at its finest :roll:

  40. purdueman says: Mar 13, 2011 2:53 PM

    I would say that Dean Spanos has the IQ of a turnip, but that would be an insult to turnips; instead let’s just say that he has the IQ of a bowling ball and leave it at that.

  41. igotblistersonmyfingers says: Mar 13, 2011 4:28 PM

    The billionaire owners and their millionaire players care about one thing only and that is the money. All this other talk is spin. We fans have no leverage in this battle so we get to sit on the sidelines and watch the fight.

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