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NBA Notebook (Nov. 22): LeBron misses practice to give deposition in lawsuit

Associated Press Published: November 23, 2016 4:00 AM

CLEVELAND -- LeBron James missed Cavaliers practice on Tuesday to give a deposition in a lawsuit involving former player's union executive Billy Hunter.

James, who serves a vice president in the union, was one of several players deposed. Hunter sued the union for wrongful termination and is seeking $10.5 million in salary and benefits. He claims he was undermined by the union during the 2011 lockout.

Hunter was fired during the 2013 All-Star Break. A court ruled in 2014 that the union was within its rights to dismiss Hunter.

James was elected to his union position in 2015. Cavaliers forward James Jones was also deposed in the lawsuit.

Cavs coach Tyronn Lue said he believed James' deposition was held in Northeast Ohio. Lue said James will return to the team and start on Wednesday, when the Cavs host Portland.

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The defending NBA champion Cavs lead the Eastern Conference with a 10-2 record.

PISTONS ANNOUNCE DOWNTOWN MOVE BEGINNING NEXT SEASON

The Detroit Pistons are coming back downtown.

Detroit Pistons owner Tom Gores, Ilitch Holdings CEO Christopher Ilitch and Detroit Mayor Mike Duggan announced the agreements during a news conference Tuesday at Cass Tech High School.

"Tom Gores and the Pistons will contribute tremendously toward the incredible, positive momentum underway in Detroit, making our city stronger," Ilitch said.

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The Pistons are currently playing their 29th and final season in Oakland County. They will honor players and championship teams the remainder of this season. Oakland County executive L. Brooks Patterson said in response, "We wish the Pistons well. Thanks for all the memories."

Gores and the Ilitches have also agreed to create a joint entertainment venture to manage their existing venues: Little Caesars Arena, Comerica Park, Fox Theatre, City Theatre, The Palace of Auburn Hills, DTE Energy Music Theatre, Meadow Brook Amphitheatre and Freedom Hill Amphitheatre.

"This is a historic day for our franchise, and for the City of Detroit," Gores said. "Detroit is rising, reinventing itself. The Pistons are doing the same. We're in this together, and we couldn't be more excited about that."

With the move, Detroit will be the only North American city to have each of the four major professional sports leagues within blocks in its urban core.

"This is further proof of Detroit's resurgence and we look forward to welcoming the Pistons in their new home," Duggan said.

The Pistons' move downtown is expected to add an additional public investment of $34.5 million to the cost of Little Caesars Arena. Duggan said half that cost will be paid for by refinancing existing DDA bonds at a lower interest rate. The remainder of the city's contribution will be paid for by extending the term of these bonds by an additional three years, Duggan said.

The Detroit Downtown Development Authority would generate that money by refinancing $250 million in bonds previously issued to help pay for the arena's construction. The arena bonds are to be paid off using property tax collections captured for downtown economic development. No funding from the city of Detroit's general fund will be used.

The $34.5 million from the bond refinancing would pay for new features at Little Caesars Arena for the Pistons -- NBA locker rooms, training facilities and rebranding the arena for both teams.

It is possible the DDA will issue taxable bonds of up to $55 million for a Pistons practice facility. The Pistons would repay those bonds.


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