Thursday, November 7, 2013

Boston Celtics v. Brian Shaw case brief

Boston Celtics v. Brian Shaw case brief summary
908 F.2d 1041 (1990)


CASE SYNOPSIS
Appellant professional basketball player sought review of an order by the United States District Court for the District of Massachusetts, which enforced an arbitration award in favor of appellee professional basketball team requiring appellant to honor his contract. Appellant argued that the arbitration award itself was unlawful, and that regardless of the unlawfulness of the award, the trial court followed improper procedures.

CASE FACTS
Appellant professional basketball player signed a contract with appellee professional basketball team in which he promised that he would cancel his contract to play for another professional basketball team. When appellant threatened to break his contract with appellee, it immediately sought arbitration. The arbitrator ruled that appellant was required to honor his contract with appellee, and appellee sought enforcement in the trial court. The trial court affirmed the arbitrator's award and issued a temporary injunction against appellant, who sought review, arguing that the arbitrator's award was unlawful and that the trial court did not follow proper procedures.

DISCUSSION

  • The court affirmed, holding that the arbitration award to appellee was proper because it drew its essence from the labor contract, and the arbitrator in interpreting the contract was acting within the scope of his authority. 
  • The court further held that the issuance of the temporary injunction was proper because a collective bargaining agreement existed between the basketball players' union and the owners' association. 
  • Courts had broad authority to ensure that collective bargaining agreements were effective.


CONCLUSION

The court affirmed the trial court's enforcement of an arbitration award in favor of appellee professional basketball team in its contract dispute with appellant professional basketball player. The arbitration award was lawful because a labor arbitration award was valid so long as it drew its essence from the labor contract, and an award drew its essence from the contract so long as the arbitrator was acting within the scope of his authority.

Suggested Study Aid For Sports Law

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