There were no rabble-rousers among the aspiring Knicks City Dancers who poured into a dance studio in Midtown last week. There was no rebellion amid the shoulder shimmies and high kicks as dozens of young women prepared for an upcoming audition for a coveted spot on the squad.
But at the end of the practice and information session, some prospective dancers noticed that a key question remained unanswered: How much would they get paid if they made the team?
In this long season of economic discontent, we've seen protests from fast-food workers and lawsuits from unpaid interns. Now it's the cheerleaders' turn: In recent months, former pompom performers for the Oakland Raiders, the Cincinnati Bengals, the Buffalo Bills, the New York Jets and the Tampa Bay Buccaneers have gone to court, accusing their teams of violating labor laws by failing to pay them minimum wage.
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What about the N.B.A.? Well, there was certainly plenty of talk about money last week with the announcement of a new Knicks coach, Derek Fisher, and buzz about a $25 million contract. And so, with the Knicks City Dancers' audition scheduled for this Saturday, it seemed only natural to ask: How much will the women be earning this coming season?