Jai-Alai Chalk Talk Hall of Fame

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Re(5): Strike flyer

Posted on March 28, 2005 at 10:02:25 PM by IJAPA 1988

I think that the majority of people reading and posting on this site are under the impression that the Jai Alai players were part of a union from the day the owners opened frontons in the US. Let's be clear here: A Jai Alai union was created during the strike with the assistence of the UAW. Tommyk, you can't compare the contracts of MLB, America's national pastime, adored by millions of people in the US, where salaries are astronomical, and players and their families can live like royalty, and the contracts of professional Jai Alai players, a foreign sport played by mostly Basque men, and a few brave Americans, enjoyed and bet upon in only a select few States that had/have frontons in the US, where salaries were decent but only adequate enough to buy a house if you were lucky enough to play during the height of the sport, and if you weren't that lucky like me, that reward after 18 years would be a coleman camping tent!!LOL! In Bridgeport and Milford, the players managers and the management had more patience with the injured players in giving them sufficient time to heal. I agree with what you said about very little turnover in the CT frontons, but don't forget that the owners could't find quality players, especially in the last 7 years.

I could give you a bunch of names like Javier, Jose etc but you won't recognize them because they never came back to the States, however I'll give you a name that you will know: Ibar, he sustained a wrist injury and he was told "Go home and good luck, I'm going to bring somebody else"
I truly believe that the players managers had a major role in the problems that we had over the years. I will never say that we were saints, but the players managers were not there to protect us, they were there to defend the Company and at the same time protect their jobs at all costs. They were required to have a few Americans on the roster. The Americans were not treated any differently from us, it didn't matter if you were Chinese, Irish, Portuguese or any other race. If the manager liked you, you would be playing at the fronton for a long time.

Tommyk, I didn't have a personal problem with going home directly after I was done playing and waiting for the final game to end before going out at night. I do have this to say, speaking of integrity, why didn't the management remove those scumbags who called us cheaters from the fronton? That was acceptable?

I hope I have been helpful.


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