Have you never had to carry out orders you disagree with?
Boss says do X.... You say, "Boss, we really should not do X, because of 1,2,3." Boss says, "I don't care, do X."
If you are in a great environment, the boss / owner etc will listen to their subordinate, and have empowered them to operate as they deem fit.
If you are in most positions, the ultimate decider will decide. And sometimes when there is a clear chain of command, and you are in a subordinate position, it is your responsibility to carry out the agenda of those above of you.... even if you disagree with their pov.
I can't recall being forced to do something that I know is with 100% incorrect which would endanger our project. Most of the hinge points at my job are more 55/45 type tradeoffs where one way might feel like a better route but it's not so obvious that either is right/wrong, and neither choice would be something that causes potential disaster.
With this, it's completely black and white and one of the sides is a complete disaster. If I had a scenario at my work where someone above me is insisting that we do something that I know to be 100% wrong and would dangerous or even catastrophic for the mission, I'd refuse to follow out the order (I'm not military, so I can do that). I'd speak up, go over people's heads (not an option for Duke here), scream and shout until the person foolishly trying to do something that I know will jeopardize the mission is convinced of their folly and the terrible idea is abandoned.
If I was Duquette, I'd ignore Angelos' orders here. I can't imagine that international free agent contracts require the owner's signature to be valid. I'm sure there is some autonomy in the scouting department to do things and sign certain guys. I'd do them. I'd spend up to our allotted budget. If Angelos' signature is required, I'd resign if he refuses to allow the team to sign international players. I know it's easy to say that while not holding that job, but this is a huge deal. Acquiescing to ownership's ridiculous stance on this is not an acceptable option.