Boies’ Firm Withdraws California Complaint Against the NBA

The National Basketball Association sent out a press release late Monday with a one-sentence update on the lawsuit filed by the players last week against the opposing parties concerning the lockout.

NEW YORK, November 21, 2011 – The complaint in the lawsuit filed by David Boies on behalf of NBA players has been voluntarily dismissed by Boies’ firm. 

“We assume that Mr. Boies was not happy with either the reassignment of the case from Oakland to San Francisco or the fact that the new judge scheduled the first conference for March 2012,” said Rick Buchanan, NBA Executive Vice President and General Counsel. “This is consistent with Mr. Boies’ inappropriate shopping for a forum that he can only hope will be friendlier to his baseless legal claims.”

March was going to be a little late so it looks like this isn’t because the players don’t think they have a case. It is indeed just a legal strategy. The AP has the scoop.

NBA players have filed an amended federal lawsuit against the league in Minnesota.

Locked-out players filed class-action antitrust lawsuits against the league last Tuesday in California and Minnesota. But the California complaint was withdrawn Monday and the cases put together in Minnesota.

Why the shift in courtroom venues? Players’ lawyer David Boies says he believes the case will move more quickly in Minnesota.

As for Boies’ reaction to the statement released by the NBA? Not good. Ken Berger from CBS Sports passed along the comments he made at a press conference on behalf of the players via Twitter.

“This is now a consolidated class action on behalf of all the players,” Boies said. “If we had not done this, the courts would’ve done it.”

Boies called league’s statement “…ridiculous. We weren’t the ones that filed suit prematurely 3-4 months ago before there was a controversy.”

He says no settlement talks have taken place to this point. “It takes two people to negotiate,” he said. 

Boies said if he felt league legal reps would be receptive, he’d have “no problem calling them.” Reiterates that case should be settled.

Challenged on why he hasn’t called NBA, Boies bristled and said NBA statement shows why it’s a “waste of time” to make a phonecall.

“It’s probably going to take a while for them to decide that they’re prepared to negotiate. Litigation is not the best way to resolve most diputes. Most disputes ought to be settled.”

Billy Hunter also chimed in, via Berger.

“We’re ready to sit down and get this thing resolved when it’s so indicated,” said Billy Hunter.

Welcome to the new world of lockout updates.  Fun, huh?