Today an unprecedanted offer hit the table, possibly a solution to the recent lockout and tragic loss of hockey to so many Canadians this winter.
The prospect is one owner, the same owner for all 30 teams in the league. Where will this lead. It is without a doubt a monopoly, we have laws preventing this from happenning in many form of business, yet now some are to be seen embracing it.
So is this a positive or negative aspect to the game? Will it save hockey, and will other sports follow suit? I don't really know.
I know many Canadians will oppose it, tradition in hockey is part of what they value most about the sport. But it is a new age. There are more teams, only 6 Canadian teams left, and change is obviously needed if we even want to see hockey played next year.
My personal belief is that it can't be all bad. In other sports we watch dynastys like the New York Yankees, Manchester United (more recently Real Madrid, but their success hasn't followed suit), Los Angelas Lakers, etc. water down sports by purchasing rediculous amounts of talent, and obviously being contenders for their respective championships every year.
With a monopoly, one owner, I believe this may not be the trend anymore. I see no reason that the owner would want nothing but ratings, and what gets more ratings than great competition? The talent would be spread out, and we will be bound to see many "races for the Cup".
On the downside I see a situation for control. How will the players control their own fate? There will be no more shopping around, trying to get the best deal from a team. No more bidding wars for the greatest player in the game. Atheletes may even have to deal with getting a good education to fall back on in case they can;t make a lifetimes earning in the approximately 5 years they play.
I definately don't have the answer. Tell me what you think.
Centralilzation Bad, Very Bad... It's going to be some serious Soviet Era bullshit if they do this.
by lockheed at March 3, 2005 2:04 PM
I' not a lawyer, but I can fairly safely say that this would absolutely NOT be a monopoly. Hockey teams only compete against each other on the field, not financially. If one group bought up hockey, baseball, football, and basketball, then maybe that might be a monopoly. But even then, individual sports don't compete against each other, but against the wider range of entertainment posibilities. The various sports leagues might as well be one group anyway, as they do revenue sharing, national TV/radio deals, and collective bargaining with players. Having a single owner probably wont change much, except make the leauge stronger (there def. wouldn't have been a strike this year if there was one owner), because of the reasons you mention. I don't like hockey, but this is a good idea.
by mg at March 3, 2005 5:20 PM
OK i'll tell you what I think: Being a pro athlete, while lucrative, has got to be one of the oddest jobs you could have. Imagine if one day you showed up @ work only to learn you'd been traded to a competitor. As for the one owner thing, how would that work? Who is it going to be, Bill Gates?
by anna at March 3, 2005 7:19 PM
All I keep hearing is that it is some firm on wall street...
But the update is that it has already been rejected by the few teams that make more than the estimated cut of just over 100 million a piece.
by dominathan at March 3, 2005 10:08 PM
In my current job situation, I was recently "traded" from one team to another within the same company. I was going to write about it, but it isn't good habbit to discuss to much detail about work situations. Lets just say the team I was on needed to cut payroll, so I was traded to another team with more money to spend. Kind of like getting traded from Milwaukee to the Yankees, only not at all.
by mg at March 3, 2005 10:32 PM
I must say that here in the US we've hardly missed the NHL. It just doesn't translate well to TV.
by anna at March 5, 2005 11:47 AM
I think it is more straight up lack of interest. I see a lot of positives in the viewing attributes of hockey (it is the fastest game out there), but why watch if you dont like the sport?
Basically they took a cold game and tried to sell it where its warm. Commen sense says that won't work.
by dominathan at March 7, 2005 11:25 AM