Court: NFL Lockout Will Stay

Appeals panel backs measure til at least June 3
By Newser Editors and Wire Services
Posted May 16, 2011 6:29 PM CDT
Giants quarterback Eli Manning works on his passing during an unofficial practice at Hoboken High School, Tuesday, May 10, 2011 in Hoboken, NJ.   (AP Photo/Julio Cortez)
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(Newser) – The 8th US Circuit Court of Appeals today decided that the NFL's lockout of players should stay in place until a full appeal is heard on whether it is legal—at least the first week of June and possibly much longer. The 2-1 decision said it believed the NFL has proven it will "likely will suffer some degree of irreparable harm without a stay." The appellate court also cast "serious doubts" that US District Judge Susan Richard Nelson had jurisdiction to lift the lockout, only to have the same 8th Circuit panel put her decision on hold four days later.

A June 3 hearing is scheduled to hear arguments on the legality of the lockout. The decision came on the same day that NFL owners and players resumed court-ordered mediation behind closed doors. A new collective bargaining agreement or guarantees of a full 2011 season seemed unlikely, however. "We'd like to make progress, but it'll be hard to do. We have to wait to see what happens June 3," Pittsburgh Steelers president Art Rooney II said. The 8th Circuit's decision had been anxiously anticipated, and is a potential signal of how the two sides will fare once the full appeal is heard.

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