The much anticipated December 29th date has come and passed without answering many of the numerous questions that were swirling around regarding the lawsuit between the Elite Rodeo Athletes and the Professional Rodeo Cowboy Associaitons. Many eyes are ears were on what was going to come down the pipeline from the judge presiding over the case in Dallas, Texas. Along with the many unanswered questions there has been a lot of talk on social media and everyone has their own opinions on the matter at hand!
While everyone, including both organizations that are involved, wanted answers that was not the case as the judge issued a ruling that could further compound things in a significant way. Instead of making a ruling in favor of either of the sides it was ruled that the two factions must sit down together and meet with a mediator to try and settle the dispute between themselves. This could be a good thing since this forces both the PRCA and the ERA to sit down face-to-face to try and come up with something that would work for everyone involved. On the other hand, it could cause much more tension if both and/or either side refuses to give in on their end.
With that being said, the next question that comes to everyone’s minds is how will this affect the entries into upcoming PRCA sanctioned rodeos regarding the athletes of the ERA? There is no significant change in that regard as the athletes in question will still be allowed to enter and participate in the PRCA events throughout the mediation process. This does not mean that those in question will be allowed to participate in the such rodeos if a ruling comes down prior to the event however.
Now that the temporary ruling has come down folks are finally starting to spark up conversations throughout the social media platforms. One interesting comment came from someone well respected within the sport of professional rodeo, Randy Bernard. He voiced his own opinion on this matter by saying this:
While there has been little word from either camps directly the President and CEO of the ERA spoke out regarding the ruling by saying, ““We believe the evidence presented at the hearing showed that PRCA’s illegal bylaws will cause ERA athletes immediate and irreparable harm while the Court considers our class action antitrust lawsuit.” He went on to say, “We appreciate the Judge’s encouragement that we all work together to find a solution outside of court and look forward to hopefully productive discussions over the coming weeks.” When talking about competing 23-time World Champion Trevor Brazile stated, “My fellow cowboys and cowgirls just want the opportunity to compete during the upcoming rodeo season without illegal retaliation by PRCA.” He went on to say, “We are very excited about ERA’s inaugural season in 2016 and are confident that free competition will expand and enhance rodeo and benefit everyone who cares about the sport.”
There are still many issues that are yet to be resolved and many questions that will continue to remain until everyone comes to some sort of agreement. In my opinion both sides want the same thing and regardless of the past turmoil I think that they can work together to take the sport of professional rodeo to the next level. Once forced to sit down face to face they will learn that each sides has their own views but in the long run they both want the exact same things and hope to bring this sport to more of a main stream level!
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