NBA’s New Twitter Account Contacts Players

I don’t know how many times I’ve said it, but gag order on NBA personnel regarding the lockout and threats of heavy fines for contacting players is absurd.  Yet, they exist, even on Twitter, which Miami Heat owner Micky Arison found out the hard way.

So quite a few people found it interesting that the NBA’s new, verified Twitter account decided to contact players on Twitter yesterday. 

Charlie Villanueva (@CV31) and Nazr Mohammed (@NazrMohammed) both tweeted about the lockout numbers recently, basically spinning the proposed 50/50 split of BRI as something, in actuality, less than 50/50.  Enter @NBA_Labor!/NBA_Labor/status/131855877174075392

Twitter / @NBA_Labor: @CV31 @NazrMohammed: Owner … via kwout

The @NBA_Labor account is a Twitter verified account that, in its own description, is “Collective Bargaining news and facts directly from the NBA office.”  That means the league office, despite its very clear directive that there is to be no contact with the players, actually contacted players.  Nazr Mohammed had what I feel to be an appropriate reaction:!/NazrMohammed/status/131858086481760257!/NazrMohammed/status/131860423141105665

Twitter / @NazrMohammed: That’s hilarious! I can’t … via kwout

Let me first acknowledge that yes, this is a ridiculous thing to be talking about.  Under the microscope, this is the biggest non-story around and I’d be pissed off that some idiot writer somewhere had the balls to even try to pass it off as something tangible.  

But this is the 2011 NBA lockout, where ridiculousness is the norm.  And this non-story is now a viable news item thanks to David Stern’s moronic “no-contact” rule.  Stern wanted it this way, so this is what he gets:  people writing about dumb twitter exchanges. 

The simple fact is that Micky Arison’s tweets were no more damaging than this.  And what about Michael Jordan’s comments about Andrew Bogut and the lockout?  That cost him $100K, which was absolutely ridiculous.  Or what about threatening Portland’s GM with a million dollar fine for saying “Yeah” in response to “it’s too bad there’s no summer league, huh?”.

It’s all so maddeningly ridiculous, the correct words to properly grasp what has happened here haven’t been invented yet.  But then, after all that stupidity, for the NBA to create a Twitter account that actually contacts players boggles the mind to infinite degrees.  And then to justify it by saying “The no-contact rule doesn’t prevent NBA from responding to misinfo about collective bargaining, no matter the source” is absolute bull.  We all know damn well that if any of the owners had tweeted that they’d have been fined.  

This is hypocrisy at the NBA’s finest.  But I suppose we should thank the NBA for shedding an important light on how dumb this has all been.  They can’t figure out how to split the last 2% of four BILLION dollars and we’re debating tweets because the NBA has chosen not to follow its own insane “no-contact” rules. 

Thanks, NBA.  For a second there, I thought I was the one that was going nuts.