Ex-Prez Clinton to Mediate Talks?
Posted by Broox Anderson
RICHFIELD, UT — 7:44 a.m. — As the lockout continues to hold its instigators in a frigid vice-grip miles apart, deprive basketball fans of their sport, and crush any and every hope for a season, there have been some strange whisperings in the sports world.
The most intriguing “whisper” has been the outcry from an NBA sports analyst/reporter, who pleas his case to ex-President Bill Clinton in a touching letter that has been slapped on the front page of NBA.com.
Read this excerpt from David Aldridge’s letter to Bill Clinton:
Dear President Clinton,
I hope this note finds you well. I see that the Secretary is in Myanmar and that NBC has just hired Chelsea as a correspondent. What on earth did you all do before Skype was invented?
I write both as a reporter who is out of suggestions and recommendations — not that anyone heeded them — and a frustrated NBA fan who sees the 2011-12 season in danger of never being played. Since February of 2011, when the league and the players’ union first got together formally during All-Star Weekend in Los Angeles, the lockout has loomed, ominously, over this great game. We knew then that the likelihood of a delayed or canceled season was great, given the separation between the two sides. And like a formulaic television drama, the days and months of rhetorical flourishes and malaprops, feigned and real anger and endless meetings have played out, leaving us where we are now: in court, with 26 percent of the regular season gone, and more to follow.
The NBA needs you.
The NBA needs you to mediate between the players and the owners.
If there is to be a season, someone has to intervene. Someone whose credentials are above reproach,who can get everyone’s attention and to whom bothsides will listen. Trust is at a premium now. Individually, David Stern and Billy Hunter may still getalong, and, if left to their own devices, I remain convinced they could get this done in a couple ofhours. But they aren’t negotiating this deal in avacuum. Powerful forces on each side are forcing their hands — small-market owners who think theyhave to have a radical restructuring of the game’s finances to survive, and agents who see a severereduction in their clients’ paydays on the horizon (and, by extension, their own) and who genuinely believe that what the owners are asking for is inherently unfair and wrong.
The aforementioned letter was properly addressed and dictated to ex-President Clinton, although it is unknown if David Aldridge actually sent him a personal copy. What is known, however, is that there is a strong wave of people polling for Clinton’s help.
In all honesty, I hope that he responds with positivity and will lead–in-stride–a charge to hack down the malicious pride and damaged egos that so potently screen any solution to the labor problem. I hope that he puts an end to this childish “nuclear winter” of negotiations, and substitutes his own solutions and unaffected views to replace those of clouded nature.
But, then again, maybe even the infamous Bill Clinton won’t be able to end the subterfuge that is occurring between the NBA and its players.
What good are lengthy lawsuits, false ultimatums, and hollow threats anyways?
Owners and players: douse your burning pride and misguided vengeance; interweave an equanimous agreement to last throughout the oncoming decade.
Let Bill Clinton mediate your talks, because at this point –
There is nothing left to lose.
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