Beşiktaş JK (Turkey-TBL) was hit with their record seventh decision (men’s team) by the FIBA Basketball Arbitral Tribunal (BAT) when BAT appointed arbitrator Raj Parker ruled that Besiktas had to pay Michal Ignerski back salary due from the 2010-11 season in the amount of EUR 88,830.11, plus 5% interest dated to May 13, 2011. The dispute comes from the agreement between Ignerski and Besiktas for his playing services during the 2010-11 season when Ignerski was set to be paid EUR 250,000 over 10 payments. Also part of the award was the EUR 25,000 fee due to Ignerski’s agent, Robert Stanley, which was never paid.
Besiktas never disputed that they owed Ignerski or Stanley, but their response to questions by the arbitrator focused on minor traffic tickets, vehicle maintenance and a team fine for disciplinary actions resulting from a technical foul Ignerski received during a game, that they wanted to deduct from Ignerski’s wages. Parker ruled that Besiktas could deduct two of the three tickets and the disciplinary fine, but not the third ticket or the vehicle maintenance. The total deductions amounted to EUR 902.33. On top of the payments, Ignerski and Stanley were awarded 5% interest, which Besiktas had argued was excessive and that there was no stipulation in the contract to allow for awarding of interest on late payments. Parker’s ruling stated that interest payments are customary when payments are late and that 5% is in line with past BAT awards. Stanley’s interest payment was calculated back to September 30, 2010.
Finally, the award states that Besiktas is liable for costs incurred by Ignerski and Stanley for bringing the matter to the BAT. Besiktas was ordered to pay EUR 9,000 to be repaid for advance fees given to the BAT to hear the arbitration case (Ignerski and Stanley covered the costs for themselves and for Besiktas, who never responded to the BAT request for fees), and EUR 7,500 for legal fees and expenses.
While this is Besiktas’ seventh arbitration case that BAT has ruled against them, those represent just the men, they’ve also lost nine cases against them that involve women since 2009.