Billy Hunter trying to clean up his mess

Image: SI.comBilly Hunter has made his fair share of enemies in his role as the executive director of the National Basketball Players Association. Last year during the lockout, his motives were questioned and players and their agents wondered whose side he was really on.

Now he has got a new mess to clean up.

An internal investigation into Hunter’s hiring practices showed him to be a little on the unethical side. Hunter employed his daughter, his daughter-in-law and the NBPA worked directly with Prim Capital, the banking firm that employs Hunter’s son.

There is nothing wrong with hiring family members if they are the right person for the job, but the investigation showed that might not have been the case.

Following the report, Hunter fired his daughter and his daughter-in-law and cut ties with Prim Capital.

That may not have been enough to please the NBPA, so, perhaps fearing for his job, Hunter took it a step further. He is now introducing a series of reforms to the association that include an "anti-nepotism" policy that will prevent the unwarranted hiring of family members in the future.

The interesting part in all of this is that the report showed that Hunter’s relatives employed by the NBPA were highly qualified, not overpaid and contributing members of the staff. It is not like they were paid millions of dollars just to sit around.

Patrick McDermott/Getty Images/ZimbioI think all this drastic reaction from Hunter is because he was already skating on thin ice as it is. He ticked off a lot of people during the lockout and they were probably already looking for a reason to fire him. Maybe he thinks that if he cleans up this mess quickly, it will all be forgotten by the time of the NBPA’s annual meeting during All-Star Weekend.

My guess is that it will not be soon forgotten and Hunter’s job performance will be examined under a microscope. There are already NBA players calling for him to be fired.

I think change is needed, top to bottom,” Nets star Deron Williams said. “I don’t think things were getting voted on like they should have been… I’m sure there’s guys that are still with Billy, and some guys that aren’t. We’ve just got to figure out what the next step is.

We will be hearing more and more about this as we get closer to All-Star Weekend, but do not be surprised if the NBPA decides to make a big change.