Five days after saying he was unprepared to put his thumb on the scales of collective-bargaining negotiations between the NFL's owners and players, U.S. District Judge David Doty did just that Tuesday by reversing an earlier ruling that would have granted the owners access to $4 billion in television revenues during a lockout. BANKS: Urgency builds as mediated talks continue
The ruling is considered a major victory of the union because, at least for now, the owners can't count on having the money to use as lockout insurance. Judge Doty will hold a hearing with both sides, at an undetermined date, to consider the award of monetary damages and equitable relief to the players -- which could include an injunction that would prevent the owners from being able to use the television revenues.
"This ruling means there is irrefutable evidence that owners had a premeditated plan to lockout players and fans for more than two years," said George Atallah, the NFLPA's assistant executive director for external affairs. "The players want to play football. That is the only goal we are focused on."
While many are touting this as good news, everything I've heard is that the owners were aware that this would most likely be the ruling and there were and still are prepared to lock the players out on 3/3.
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