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Wednesday, February 08, 2006
NBA Dress Code Discussion Continues

Trey Popp of the Philadelphia City Beat has a story on the recent symposium at the University of Pennsylvania School of Law on the NBA and its collective-bargaining with NBA players. (Popp, "Dress Blues," Philadelphia City Beat, Feb. 2-8, 2006).

I am pleased that at least one person thought that I was well-dressed at the syompsium:
A pair of well-dressed, high-profile lawyers came to Philadelphia to take Iverson's argument a step further at a Penn symposium on sports law.

Michael McCann, an assistant professor at the Mississippi College School of Law, maintained that off-court threads aren't really the main issue. "There is an apparent pattern among NBA officials suggesting that they want to transfer autonomy from players to the league," he said. Owners have clamped down on certain hip-hop symbols in an effort to court increasingly conservative sponsors and appeal to a broader audience. Yet when the league isn't targeting Iverson's hip-hop generation for dress-code discipline, they've been exploiting it to line its pockets. The league's officially licensed video games are a case in point, McCann contends. NBA Ballers advertises itself as a peek into the "'bling-bling' lifestyle of NBA superstars," complete with "chromed-out cars" and "tatts." NBA 2K6 goes further, featuring rap artists like Method Man and ?uestlove as playable characters.

Alan Milstein observed that the league's attempt to impose conformity off the court was offensive. "When Allen sees little boys in bling-bling trying to look like him, he doesn't think he's corrupting them . . . he thinks it's great that the game can lead people to embrace other cultures."

For related information, please see:

Michael A. McCann & Joseph S. Rosen, Legality of Age Restrictions in the NBA and the NFL, 56 Case Western Reserve Law Review __ (forthcoming, 2006).

Michael A. McCann, The Reckless Pursuit of Dominion: A Situational Analysis of the NBA and Diminishing Player Autonomy, 8 University of Pennsylvania Journal of Labor and Employment Law __ (forthcoming, 2006).

A Webcast of My talk at Duke Law School (and subsequent critique by Duke Law Professors Paul Haagen and Barak Richman) on high school players and the NBA Draft (February 6, 2006).


I think you ought to know that you mis-cited the article in that first sentence. Tee hee -- "Poop."

Blogger Nye! -- 2/08/2006 9:35 PM  

Thanks, I fixed it, but that was pretty funny!

Blogger Michael McCann -- 2/08/2006 9:43 PM  

This will probably, and eventually, become a more important issue than the age limit (because that barrier can't legally hold forever).

Good post.

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Anonymous Anonymous -- 4/07/2006 10:45 PM  

michael, do you see a correlation between nba dress code enforcement and the banning of religious headware in government and public scools.

Blogger john c. morgan -- 2/27/2007 5:58 PM  

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