Sources: Law firm needs more time to complete NBPA review

In a series of conference calls with the executive committee and player representatives, the National Basketball Players Association has informed players that a law firm selected to conduct a review of union business practices needs more time to complete its report, league sources told CBSSports.com Friday.

The report being prepared by the firm Paul, Weiss, Rifkind, Wharton & Garrison is expected to be completed in the near future.

While the future of NBPA executive director Billy Hunter, president Derek Fisher and several members of the executive committee whose seats will be up for election is unresolved, the conference calls Thursday were mostly devoted to standard union business. NBPA officials briefed players on the new annuity program adopted for retired players in the new colletive bargaining agreement, the distribution of licensing money and discussions held last week by the newly revamped competition committee on several issues, including flopping.

The competition committee continued to discuss flopping and what to do about it, but formulated no recommendations to be brought to the Board of Governors for approval, sources said.

As the NBA returns to a normal schedule after the lockout that cut last season's schedule from 82 to 66 games, the owners' planning committee also met Wednesday in New York to debate the details and execution of a new revenue sharing plan, sources said.

Another NBPA call involving all 30 player reps is expected to take place in the next several weeks to discuss how to handle elections for as many as six or seven seats on the executive committee. Fisher, whose involvement with the NBPA has dwindled in recent months, is not up for election, but several other committee members are. Elections could be postponed until All-Star weekend.

It's difficult to envision significant union decisions being made before completion of the business review, which was prompted when Fisher raised questions about union finances and business practices after the lockout. The U.S. Attorney also has been investigating the players' association, probing, among other things, Hunter's hiring of several family members to union positions and business that was conducted with his son's financial firm and daughter's law firm.


Before joining CBSSports.com, Ken Berger covered the NBA for Newsday. The Long Island, N.Y., native has also worked for the Associated Press and can be seen on SportsNet New York. Catch Ken every Saturday, when he hosts Eye on Basketball from 6-8 p.m. ET on cbssportsradio.com
 
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