Saturday's Niblets from around the net for 03/14/09

Fryingpan Sports

Saturday’s Niblets from around the net for 03/14/09

nib

By Bill Smith

Best comment this week:

From Sportsbook on Capologist is the NFL MVP

Comment:

You are right and it is unfortunate, but I have a feeling that this will get settled in the 11th hour like it was last time. Last time, the economy was good. This time, the NFL will look even worse if they can’t settle this mess and keep the fans happy.

Also, this will be Goodell’s first test. Yes, we know he’s a sheriff and can suspended players when necessary, but what about the labor talks? How competent is he with that?

My Analysis: we will all find out how good a negotiator he is soon enough. But it takes two parties committed to getting a deal done to accomplish a contract. My fear is that the campaign rhetoric coming from the candidates to replace Gene Upshaw as the Executive Director of the NFL Players Association indicates that Goodell may not have a reasonable partner with whom to bargain.

UPDATES ON PREVIOUS COLUMNS:

The 08-09 Cavilers are not your fathers team.

Thursday night the Cavs on their west coast road trip came back from … Read more at FryingPanSports

TO: Owners of the NFL and NBA This is not the time to strike or lockout!

Fryingpan Sports

TO: Owners of the NFL and NBA

This is not the time to strike or lockout!

By Bill Smith

There is a famous saying that those that fail to learn from history are doomed to repeat it. That is not correct in all cases. In the case of the NFL and the NBA that face expiration of player master contracts in the next couple of years, let me restate it.

“Those that fail to learn from history are just doomed!” Smith, 2009

Both the leagues must learn from the examples of the NHL and MLB how devastating strikes or lockouts can be to their survival.

The case of MLB in 1994

In 1993, MLB had a total attendance of 70,257,938 a 26 percent increase over 92 and the best in league history. In the 5 years from 83-88 the league had averaged an increase of 3.3 percent per year. From 89-93 the league enjoyed an average increase of 5.5 percent per year. Teams like Montreal that had struggled for years were starting to show improvement. The game seemed fine but according to both the players association and the owners the economics were not.

The owners had forced then … Read more at FryingPanSports

The 08-09 Cavilers are not your father's team.

Fryingpan Sports

The 08-09 Cavilers are not your father’s team.

By Bill Smith

I will admit a bias toward the Cavs. I spent many an interesting night in the old downtown Coliseum with Walt Westley and the crew. I was there the night the Cavs won their first game against the Lakers. They almost needed a new arena after that game because the stomping by the fans in support of the ugliest uniforms in the league almost caused the building to implode.

I also bought 10 shares of stock in the Cavs when they sold shares to raise money. But I have to admit, this team is not anything like that team was.

On Sunday and Monday, the Cavs did something they could not do just a year ago—win 2 tough back to back road games with 4th quarter comebacks against really good teams. The maturation of LeBron James is a big part of the improvement but it was the addition of Mo Williams that put the team over the top.

In both games the Cavs were behind in the 4th quarter and came back to win against Atlanta and Miami respectively. This was without their inside defensive … Read more at FryingPanSports

The NBA has to “bail out” 15 teams.

Fryingpan Sports

The NBA has to “bail out” 15 teams.

By Bill Smith

The Sports Business Journal (SBJ) reported that a private placement deal to borrow 175 million dollars was arranged for the N.B.A. by JPMorgan Chase and Bank of America. The charged interest rates are reported to be as high at 8.27 percent. The influx of cash will augment the 1.7 billion dollar league-wide credit facility that uses the NBA’s media contracts as collateral to secure loans for the clubs.

The money is necessary to provide cash to 15 NBA teams to cover payroll and other expenses. Those teams, unnamed by the league, have struggled with salaries, capital improvements, and to cover losses sustained over the last few years.

“In this economic environment, it’s tremendous that the league can place such a facility,” Alex Martins, chief operating officer of the Orlando Magic told the SBJ, which plans to borrow from the new debt. “It certainly helps us bridge the time period between now and when we move into our new events center in 2010. We’ve been operating at a $15 [million] to $20 million [annual] loss over the past half-dozen years, so it helps us” Martins told the SBJ.… Read more at FryingPanSports