Perception of 'boycott' could hurt NBA players during CBA negotiations


We’ve written about virtually every angle that’s out there on the alleged Pistons boycott, and although there are many theories about what happened, NBA.com’s David Aldridge points out that because of the rampant dysfunction in Detroit prior to this incident, the perception nationally is obviously that this was some type of organized attempt to undermine an unpopular coach.

But Aldridge touches on one angle that has largely been ignored locally as a result of local reporters having to track down the details of the story and try to find out what actually happened. Because of the overwhelmingly coverage, does this boycott become a tool for the league and owners to prove that players have too much power? Aldridge asked Dirk Nowitzki about that:

I had asked Dirk Nowitzki on Saturday if he expected blowback from the owners during collective bargaining because of the perception that players were more in control than usual.

“You don’t want all the power with the owners,” Nowitzki said, “but you don’t want to have the players with all the power, boycotting practices and stuff like that. That’s taking it a little far. So hopefully we can find a happy medium somewhere.”

Aldridge also endorses a candidate for next coach of the Pistons:

The Pistons should send Hamilton home, and whether they can buy him out or not by tomorrow — the deadline for players to be added to other team’s rosters to be playoff eligible — doesn’t matter. Let Prince leave via free agency. Let Kuester finish the season with some dignity, and then make a change. Longtime assistant coach Darrell Walker has been sitting there waiting for a chance for years, while the Pistons went to Michael Curry (one year) and Kuester (two). Walker, who has head coaching experience in Washington and Toronto, would be a perfectly good choice for a young, rebuilding team, and he won’t cost the new owner the kind of money it would take to lure the likes of Nate McMillan.

At this point, I have no idea whether the Pistons actually had some type of team-wide communication to organize a boycott. More and more it seems like an emotional reaction with the long-term ramifications never entering the minds of people who may or may not have participated in what may or may not have been a boycott.

Tags: John Kuester Richard Hamilton Tayshaun Prince