For those hoping that the Eighth Circuit Court of Appeals would provide a 'death blow' to the owners locking out the players, sorry.
According to Albert Breer of NFL Network, the Eighth Circuit has granted the NFL a stay of district court judge Judy Nelson's decision. This means the lockout will remain in place until the appeal is decided. It took these nitwit judges nearly four weeks to rule on this permanent stay after they agreed on an unprecedented 'temporary' stay during the NFL Draft.
As we stated before, the moment the 'temporary' stay was granted and we read the dissenting opinion, we knew the permanent one would be as well. Just like the 'temporary' stay, two schmucks voted for, one dissented.
The two who voted for the stay state that the players aren't suffering harm and that, essentially, Nelson's decision is meaningless and full of crap. Judge Kermit Dye, who dissented against the 'emergency' stay, dissented strongly against this permanent one:
"Whatever harm may be said to befall the NFL during the pendency of the expedited appeal stands in stark contrast to the irreparable harm suffered by the Players."
And while millions of people are adversely affected by NFL football, especially financially (see Indianapolis and the 2012 Super Bowl), the two judges who voted for the stay really don't give a damn.
"The public interest surely favors some resolution between the parties that will permit professional football to be played in 2011," Colloton and Benton wrote. "But in this legal context, we see no reason to differentiate between the public interest and the proper application of the federal law regarding injunctions."
NFL counsel Jeff Pash is already in full B.S. mode. At the end of the day, the owners got what they wanted from this ruling: No football.
Like my friend Laura Calloway, I sincerely hope that these rumors of a supposed mediation 'breakthrough' are true, but I'm skeptical. This is what the NFL owners want. Two sets of judges (the two pro-league judges, Dye, and Nelson) all have dramatically different views on what this case should be about and how it should be ruled. Andrew Brandt of NFP sums it up best:
Welcome to the court system.
But, I think that, after this seemingly cynical, politically-motivated decision today by two judges who have effectively acted without precedent, this tweet from CBS' Mike Freeman pretty much sums it all up best:
E-mail to me from Patriots fan: "after today I have removed all the patriot logos, banners, and product from all 4 of my kids' rooms..."
Continues: "I will not have them be a part of the greediest game in the world." Uh oh.
I'm starting to feel the same way. So much for cocktail napkins and golf, Mr. Irsay.