ntly in lower courts present potential threat
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MEMPHIS, Tenn. -- The Grizzlies have little time to celebrate and appreciate the best season in this franchises history after being swept from the Western Conference finals. The organization faces several pivotal decisions, including the future of coach Lionel Hollins, free agent Tony Allen and how to handle a couple of burgeoning player salaries. "Were definitely thinking the future," guard Mike Conley said Tuesday. "Were definitely thinking that we got a good taste of what we could be, and now were going to have to make some decisions this off-season obviously based around Marc (Gasol) and myself and the core guys and see if we can improve ourselves and get back to where our goals are at." The Grizzlies found themselves swept from the post-season Monday night after a 93-86 loss to the Spurs. It was not the way they wanted to cap the best season ever for the small-market franchise. Several players made it clear Tuesday they want Hollins back as their coach after he helped them improve each season since taking over in January 2009. They were at their best this season going 56-26 and just missing the Southwest Division title by two games to the Spurs. They set franchise marks winning 32 games at home, 24 on the road and with a 58.5 winning percentage. They had never played or won as many post-season games as they did this season. They also extended their post-season sellout streak to 17 straight games. That is why Hollins already is being mentioned as a candidate elsewhere with openings at the Clippers, Bucks and Nets being possibilities. Clippers owner Donald Sterling was at Game 1 of the Western finals in San Antonio with speculation that he was taking a close look at Hollins, who knocked Los Angeles out of the playoffs in the first round. This is the first time the veteran coach has been a hot commodity. Hollins said nobody has asked to talk to him yet. He wants to be paid fair-market value but he said money will not be the final factor. "Hopefully, I will be here," Hollins said. "I love the guys. I love this city and the fans and everybody associated with the team. But weve got to be very, very realistic in what the future holds." Hollins had little negotiating leverage in 2010 when he accepted a contract from then-owner Michael Heisley. Now Robert Pera heads up the new ownership group, and Hollins had his longest talk with the new boss after Monday nights loss though his future did not come up in conversation. "I think he just wants to win," Hollins said. But Hollins also wants to know what chief executive officer Jason Levien plans to do with the roster. Levien traded away leading scorer Rudy Gay on Jan. 30, the second trade clearing up space away from the luxury tax threshold. Now Levien must decide whether the Grizzlies can afford to keep Allen, 31, and a two-time member of the NBA All-Defensive first team who received votes for Defensive Player of the Year. Allen said he wants to stay in Memphis where he coined the teams "Grit and Grind" mantra and is the self-named "Grindfather" at the arena known as the Grindhouse. "Getting to the Western finals shows that its a team to be reckoned with," Allen said. Guard Jerryd Bayless, who helped handle the ball to relieve the pressure on Conley, has a player option for next season. Tayshaun Prince, acquired in the Gay trade, will cost more than $7 million each of the next two seasons, but he struggled so much with his shot this post-season that teams left him open, daring him to shoot. Zach Randolph is a candidate for a trade or amnesty with a contract for two more years at $34 million. The two-time All Star led Memphis with 15.4 points and 11.2 rebounds a game with 45 double-doubles during the season. He averaged 20 points against the Clippers and 18 against the Thunder only to be limited by the Spurs to 11 points in the finals. They frustrated him with a wave of big bodies pushing him off his usual low block, and the Grizzlies couldnt adapt or make the Spurs pay. Randolph said reaching the finals for the first time helped him learn exactly what he needs to do now in his game. He also wants to finish his career in Memphis. "But its a business, and I understand that." The Grizzlies still need perimeter shooting after the Spurs dominated the paint in the last three games, able to focus on shutting down Randolph and Gasol. Quincy Pondexter should push for a starting spot after shooting 49 per cent from the floor and 45 per cent from 3-point range, but it wasnt enough. Right now, Memphis core is Gasol and Conley. Gasol was voted Defensive Player of the Year, and Conley was voted to the NBAs All-Defensive second team. Gasol said the Grizzlies themselves can work this off-season to get better as players. "I got to get better, Mike has to get better, Zach has to get better," Gasol said. "Everybody has to get better. Now we seen what it takes to make it to the finals and you see how you got to work through the whole season creating those habits, those good habits to play at the highest level." David Moore Jersey .S. -- Nikolaj Ehlers registered a hat trick for the third straight game and Jonathan Drouin had a goal and five assists as the Halifax Mooseheads hammered the host Cape Breton Screaming Eagles 10-1 on Tuesday in Quebec Major Junior Hockey League action. Austin Calitro Jersey . Peter Gammons, an analyst for Major League Baseballs network and website, drew the ire of hockey fans on Sunday when he criticized the two NHL teams on Twitter for their physical game the night before. http://www.cheapseahawksjerseyssale.com/ . - Blake Griffin had 30 points and 12 rebounds, J. 12th Fan Jersey . Neymar curled home a free kick from just outside the area to put the 2014 World Cup host ahead in the 44th minute. Three minutes after the break, a simple through pass from Paulinho freed Oscar and the Chelsea star rounded goalkeeper Jung Sung-ryong to extend Brazils lead. Simeon Thomas Jersey . The CFLs leading rusher kept adding to his gaudy numbers this season and scored the winning touchdown with just over two minutes to play. The New Westminster, B.C., native plowed three yards into the end zone for the last score of a heated, see-saw battle between the two teams with the best records in the CFL. The U.S. Supreme Court will not hear the NCAAs appeal of the Ed OBannon case, leaving in place lower court rulings that found amateurism rules for big-time college sports violated federal antitrust law but prohibited payments to student-athletes.The justices on Monday rejected the appeal in a class-action lawsuit originally filed by OBannon, a former UCLA basketball star, and later joined by other athletes. The court also rejected OBannons separate appeal that called on the justices to reinstate a plan for schools to pay football and basketball players for the uses of their names, images and likenesses.It means the status quo has been preserved for a while longer, antitrust attorney Robert Boland said.The effect of the high court action is to leave the NCAA vulnerable to more legal challenges that are working their way through the courts, but it also gives the association time to make changes to blunt those possible threats.While we are disappointed with this decision not to review this case, we remain pleased that the 9th Circuit agreed with us that amateurism is an essential component of college sports and that NCAA members should not be forced by the courts to provide benefits untethered to education, including providing any payments beyond the full cost of attendance, NCAA chief legal officer Donald Remy said in a statement.In 2014, a U.S. district judge decided the NCAAs use of names, images and likenesses of college athletes without compensation violated antitrust law. Judge Claudia Wilken ruled schools could -- but were not required to -- pay football and mens basketball players up to $5,000 per year. The money would go into a trust and be available to the athletes after leaving college. Wilken also ruled schools could increase the value of the athletic scholarship to meet the federal cost of attendance figure for each institution.The San Francisco-based 9th U.S. Circuit Court of Appeals last year overturned Wilkens ruling on the payments of $5,000 but upheld the antitrust violation.While we would have liked the Supreme Courts review, we remain pleased with our trial victory and the 9th Circuits decision upholding the finding that the NCAA violated the antitrust laws and affirming a permanent injunction to remedy that violation, which enables NCAA member schools to offer college aathletes significant additional funds toward the cost of attendance, Michael Hausfeld, lead attorney in the OBannon case, said in a statement.ddddddddddddThe NCAA already has addressed one aspect of Wilkens ruling by increasing the amount of aid schools may provide athletes. In 2015, the NCAA passed legislation allowing schools to increase the value of an athletic scholarship to include each institutions federally regulated cost of attendance figures. The cost of attendance includes estimated values for things such as travel between campus and home, and clothing and food.Two cases currently in lower courts present potential threats to the NCAAs amateurism model and its desire to restrict compensation to athletes in ways that would be more akin to an employer-employee relationship.A case led by antitrust lawyer Jeffrey Kessler and originally filed by former Clemson football player Martin Jenkins and another claim first filed by former West Virginia player Shawne Alston but now consolidated with other cases challenge the NCAAs right to cap compensation for athletes at the value of a scholarship.The Alston case also seeks damages for athletes who played college sports before the scholarship was increased to include cost of attendance.I think those cases will probably more determine this issue, but it really has thrown it back into a murky place where we know that amateurism per se as practiced by the NCAA is not protected under the rule of reasoned analysis, antitrust attorney Robert Boland said. On the other hand, what precisely does that mean to student-athletes in this generation and going forward? Highly unclear.These other cases, though, are nowhere near a resolution and time is on the NCAAs side.To some degree you could say thats a strategy for the NCAA and in the interests that are in charge of college sports, said Boland, who is director of the masters of sports administration program at Ohio University. That they maintain the status quo despite litigation is both a practical reality, but also an opportunity for them to begin to reform in a way thats effective. To begin to make some changes that would kind of diffuse the future lawsuits that are coming. 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