NFLPA chief pushes lockout meter back to 14

amd_demaurice_smith.jpgThere was hope several weeks ago regarding the NFLPA’s anticipation of a lockout when Executive Director De Smith reduced his assessment from 14 on a scale of one to 10 to 95 percent on a scale of one to 100.

Smith recently joined Shan Shariff of 610 Sports in Kansas City, and Smith put the number back to 14 — which technically is equivalent to putting the chances at 140 percent.

Smith also reiterated some of the standard talking points regarding the potential for a lockout:  the $4 billion (down from $5 billion) in supposedly free money that the NFL will get from the networks if there’s no football in 2011, the refusal of the league to open its books, and the “18-percent pay cut” that the league has demanded, an assertion influenced by perspective and (arguably) a faulty assumption that revenues will remain flat.

But the one thing that caused our ears to perk up the most came when the concept of a “lockout” was introduced into the conversation.

Said Shariff, “You corrected me a couple months ago . . . what’s the proper term now again DeMaurice?”

Responded Smith, “Lockout.  I don’t know what a work stoppage is.”

Then Shariff said that the league “hasn’t had a lockout since 1987.”  And Smith didn’t correct him to say that, actually, it was a strike 23 years ago, not a lockout.

It’s a subtle point, but it potentially speaks to our belief that the league won’t lock out the players, but instead bargain to impasse and impose the last offer as the new work rules, with the players then forced to decide whether to show up or walk out.  Smith, we suspect, will try to characterize the move as a constructive lockout — a stance that gives the players no choice but to lock themselves out due to the gross unfairness of the final offer.

36 responses to “NFLPA chief pushes lockout meter back to 14

  1. For the sake of everyone involved, owners, players and fans, this mofo has to go, and fast.

  2. Great! Go ahead and LOSE 50% of your fanbase just like Major League Baseball did after their first strike! Rediculous!

  3. Hard to imagine anything being unfair to either side. They’re all making ludicrous amounts of money.
    Wish I had this problem…….

  4. DeDe sounded more reasonable when he was first chosen. Now, he sounds like every loser we have ever seen from the Union side.
    Hey DeDe, every time you let something false “slip” by, it destroys your credibility for anything you say. Quit grandstanding and get down to business.
    It might actually be a shocker to you, but it there is a work stoppage or a strike, fans blame EVERYONE! Players are far more numerous and boisterous. You can figure it out from there.

  5. Wow. This goose is laying golden eggs. Let’s kill, carve it up, and see how it works.

  6. Message to both sides:
    Your fans and most of the regular people in America are trying to deal with a difficult economic environment. We don’t care nor do we want to hear about how you need to feed your families or how many millions you can’t spare to be parted with. Get a damn deal done and play the game.

  7. Not even realistic…. Owners would still pay the same amount, the union gives up nothing…
    The union still wants to control the same size pie!

  8. I’m so tired of hearing this stuff from De Smith. I’d love to see him speak about things that would better the game for the players and the fans, like increasing roster size.
    If the owners really want to reduce player salaries, then hit them somewhere else. Ask for more players. 5 more players a team would create 160 more jobs for his union, would increase depth on each time to fight injuries, and bring better games to us fans.
    But he keeps harping about a lockout and the whole open the books chant. It’s a broken record De, play another one.

  9. Doesn’t that make it a ‘strike’ not a ‘lockout’?
    This Orwellian playing at word games instead of trying to make something happen doesn’t impress me that the NFLPA has a lot of brains at the top.
    It appears to me that the NFLPA has decided to strike and they are just trying to figure some way to make it look like the Owners are at fault.

  10. # joetoronto says: May 6, 2010 7:40 AM
    For the sake of everyone involved, owners, players and fans, this mofo has to go, and fast.
    DITTO DITTO DITTO!!!!!!!!!!

  11. God Damn, that guy is fugly!
    Why on earth would they have elected him to represent them and negotiate on their behalf is mind boggling. Especially considering the stakes.
    He is the wrong guy for that job it should have been apparent to everybody a LONG time ago.

  12. He is basically the head lawyer for the players in their negotiations with the ownership. It is his job to drive a hard bargain and refuse to have money taken out of the players’ hands. All you douche’s hating on Demaurice Smith would love for him to represent your interests if your employer was making billions of dollars and asking you to take a pay cut. Even if you were making millions yourself. A deal will be cut before there is any lockout/work stoppage because the players want to get paid in the final analysis, but will fight like hell for every penny until that compromise is made. As they should.

  13. shrimp soup, shrimp salad…… I know everything there is to know bout the shrimping business.

  14. I would never want a vocal idiot (like DeSmith appears to be) ever representing my side in any negotiations… Lionel Hutz may have more competence.

  15. “gross unfairness of the final offer.”
    What a bunch of bullshit. I’m sick and tired of this wealthy pussies bitching about their CBA. Gonna lose fans. Just like hockey. And just like that lame-ass game of baseball.

  16. @FedorTheChamp
    Do you honestly think that 50% of the fanbase will disappear? No way. We love football and the NFL knows this. They might lose 10% max, and that’s a stretch.

  17. # Burnum says: May 6, 2010 7:30 AM
    “De Smith is a criminal. He really seems to want a lockout badly.”
    No one wants it more than Jerry Jones.
    Jerruh: “I feel the need, the need for greed.”

  18. # JoeFlaccosUniBrow says: May 6, 2010 9:51 AM
    Do you honestly think that 50% of the fanbase will disappear? No way. We love football and the NFL knows this. They might lose 10% max, and that’s a stretch.”
    Tell that to MLB. They know…

  19. The union probably couldn’t have made a worse choice than DeSmith. He has done an awful job so far and seems to have very little grip on reality. Or if he does he is intentionally distorting the situation in significant ways that will do nothing to help negotiations along.

  20. We are well over a year away from the true crunch time in this saga. After all, there will be football in 2010, and the 2011 season doesn’t kick off until September 8, 2011. As Seeryer stated earlier, Smith’s job is to scratch and claw for every dime he can get for his membership – that’s his job. He is being pushed for concessions, and like any good union leader he is going to resist that as strongly as he can. Keep in mind that it is the owners who chose to open up the CBA early. You can’t really blame Smith for not being willing to roll over and play dead a year before he has to.
    The harsh truth is that you won’t see a resolution to this dispute until the 11th hour. I know that all the rhetoric, posturing and game playing from both sides is going to be incredibly tiresome, but that’s how it’s going to be until the Summer, or perhaps even Fall of 2011.

  21. Dear NFLPA,
    I heard rumors that the NFL said you guys are jerks and you couldn’t spell cat when given the c and t. You are going to let them diss you like that?
    The only recourse is a lockout, for 2-5 years at least.
    Your friend,
    The UFL
    PS: We may move our games to Sundays if circumstances call for it.

  22. #Seeryer
    Thank God someone here can speak with some sense. I hate unions like any good conservative, but the National Football League is a business entity that has been given the anti-trust exemption by Congress. If the teams can collude, conspire and stand as one, why can’t the players? Peyton Manning has no choice about where to ply his trade and enhance his marketability.
    Fans need to remember that Smith represents beloved Peyton, beloved Tom Brady, and the more recently beloved, and embraced by the nation, New Orleans Saints players. 2003 est. revenue $5 Billion, 2009 est. revenue $8 Billion… that’s with a “B” boys, a friggin B. The estimated profit margin? Around 15%. that’s $1.2 BILLION with a “B” boys, a friggin B.
    And why will the fans see no football in 2011? because of the owners, not the players. Remember, it was the owners that opted out of the CBA 2 yrs early.

  23. Honestly both sides are greedy, the owners and the players. But what owner of what business does not make more money that it’s employees. That’s one of the advantages of starting or buying a business. No one gets into a business so their workers make less than them, especially big business NFL. I don’t care what happens. All I know is the FANS want football so sit down like grown men and fix it. By the way, you haven’t read one post of someone writing that they’ll stop watching football if they lockout. That’s b/c the NFL has fans by the balls and they know it.

  24. They asked “On a scale of one to ten”, not “On a scale of one to fourteen”.

  25. The Players’ Union needs to get slapped down, and HARD. When are they going to realize that they don’t make the rules? Owners make the rules, and if players don’t like it, they can take their tremendous talents and go become brain surgeons or nuclear physicists. I don’t care how much money the owners are making…that has NOTHING to do with what players deserve to make. I don’t blame the players for trying to get as much as they can, and if owners are stupid enough to pay athletes millions of dollars to play a game, more power to them. But when it comes down to the final straw, owners are the ones with the gold and you know the rule about he who has the gold…
    Bring on the replacements!!!

  26. What kind of dick sets a 1-10 scale and then picks a 14? That makes absolutely no sense.
    Maybe Smith should watch “Spinal Tap.” These go to 11…

  27. greedy union a-holes.
    i wonder what gale sayers and his lifetime earnings has to say about greedy millionaires complaining for more money.
    screw de smith and the nflpa. i could care less about them. let them strike or what have you and let scrubs play – they might not be as good, but at least they’re appreciative of what they have.

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