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Texas Tech Univ. School of Law

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Saturday, August 16, 2014

Article on Getting Professional Basketball Players Paid Overseas

BasketballSteven Olenick, Jenna Kochen & Jason Sosnovsky, recently published an article entitled, Finding a Solution: Getting Professional Basketball Players Paid Overseas, 15 Tex. Rev. Ent. & Sports L. 1-17 (2013). Provided below is a portion of the introduction to the article:

Recent history has shown that professional basketball teams, like any other business, are not immune to the fallout of the global financial crisis. If the economic situation affecting professional basketball could be categorized as a disaster like the rest of the global financial crisis at large, then Europe would be its ground zero. In recent years, American players such as Josh Childress and Carlos Arroyo have enjoyed the ability to garner more lucrative contracts playing overseas than they would have by playing stateside in the National Basketball Association ("NBA"). 1 But European basketball 2 faces a conundrum, which if left unchecked, will vitiate its ability to attract and retain top American talent. Specifically, teams are failing and also neglecting to pay their players. In the most innocuous form, this trend is based on a team's inability to pay, but in its most insidious form, teams simply refuse to pay their players.

In the situation of non-payment, a player's only recourse is arbitration before a tribunal of the Federation Internationale de Basketball ("FIBA"). 3 That tribunal is the Basketball Arbitral Tribunal ("BAT"). 4 Appeals of the BAT go to the Court of Arbitration for Sports ("CAS"). 5 FIBA's system of arbitration is a seemingly straightforward solution at first blush, but upon closer inspection, it is neither straightforward nor a solution. On the contrary, unlike adjudication before a U.S.-based tribunal, FIBA may indeed rule for a player, but the ruling ...

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