Michele Roberts Rumors
With an original four-year agreement set to expire in September, Michele Roberts plans to seek a new contract as the executive director of the National Basketball Players Association, sources tell ESPN. Roberts plans to send a formal letter of her intentions to the union’s executive committee in the near future, sources said.
Roberts had strongly considered staying in the NBPA’s executive director role for only the length of her original contract — and expressed that to the union’s senior membership — but has recently decided to pursue a longer tenure, sources said. NBPA president Chris Paul played a significant part in Roberts’ hiring in July 2014 and he has built a strong working relationship with Roberts.
Jeff Zilgitt: NBPA exec. director Michele Roberts: “We took some important steps in identifying existing frustrations for both sides. Now with that information, we plan to move forward and continue to work together to find solutions that will enhance the on-court experience for both parties.”
Jeff Zilgitt: Refs union spokesman Mark Denesuk: “Our two unions met out of the necessity to examine issues that have previously been left unaddressed. We look forward to continued collaboration between our two organizations to explore common interests.”
Your winter meeting is Friday. Can you share what is on the agenda? Michele Roberts: “Not much. It will be a discussion of some of the issues that have been in the news. There has been a lot of buzz from the start of the year about medical marijuana. A lot of players are interested in knowing what that is all about, so we will have some conversations about that. [NBA commissioner] Adam [Silver] has revisited the issue on one-and-done, but there are some conversations we will have with the league about that. I wanted to get some input from players about that.
How do you feel about the state of the NBA at the moment? Michele Roberts: “Financially, the game is growing. The BRI [basketball-related income] is on the rise. I don’t feel happy about the problems that football is having. But I’m happy that we don’t have them. I always believe this, and it’s continued to be true, that basketball players are continuing to enjoy the social media world with the greatest following among fans than in other sports. Our guys are significantly seen as role models or people that fans want to hear about, talk about, learn about and be next to.”