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December 2012, Vol. 135, No. 12
The basketball lockout of 2011
Paul D. Staudohar
Paul D. Staudohar is professor emeritus of business administration at California State University, East Bay, California, and a member of the National Academy of Arbitrators.
Labor-management relations did not play a dominant role in professional sports until the early 1970s. Growing fan interest in the games, heightened by network television, transformed leagues and teams into valuable business enterprises. Players' unions, previously weak and ineffectual, emerged under new leadership to seek a greater share of the expanding wealth through collective bargaining. Ever since, labor-management relations in sports have been characterized by conflict over money and power.
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