NFL Lockout

27 05 2011

As the NFL season approaches there seems to be no end in sight for this NFL lockout.  It’s hard to imagine that both the owners and the players are willing to risk “all or nothing” in an industry that’s worth billions of dollars.

As an owner of a company, I truly understand how the owners feel in regards to trying to make as much money as they can because after all, it was their money they risked when they initially bought the team and should be rewarded for that.  People tend to forget that owners risk millions of dollars every year on players that either turn out not to be as good as they should be or lose players to injuries and other incidents, like pulling guns out in strip clubs…can you say Plexico Buress?  Besides the players, it takes a huge payroll to take care of the rest of the organization and all of that is on the owner.  Now if I was an NFL owner and I had employees (players) not wanting to play because they felt they weren’t earning enough I would probably show them to the front door and tell them they can seek employment elsewhere.  I wouldn’t want employees telling me how to run my business because after all they’re Employees!

On the player’s side, these guys have a very short term career in the NFL and I certainly do not blame them for trying to make as much money as they can either!  If you look at all of the long term effects the football takes on the player you can see the player is risking the well being of his body and mind in order to play a game that sometimes last just a couple of years.  Should this player be compensated long term?  I think so!

Players that risk permanent physical and mental damage absolutely need to be taken care of!  You won’t find much argument here unless you’re in the front office of the NFL, where they have a doctor on staff who still claims there’s not enough proof to show that football can cause players permanent damage both physically and mentally.  Would you want this quack examining you?  What doctor in his right mind honestly believes there isn’t enough proof of this?   I guess all of the concussions that player receive during their career have no possibility of long term effects…right!

Now that we talked about the owners and the players let’s talk about the fans.  It is us, the fans, who ultimately support the team and therefore the owners.  It is us, the fan, who is being taken for granted while they try to negotiate out a settlement.  It is us, the fan, who have prepaid for season tickets who might be in jeopardy of not watching football this year.  Are the owners going to pay us interest on money they’ve been holding onto the past year…I don’t think so!  It seems to me that neither side is negotiating in good faith because they’re not negotiating!  Don’t you think they should be at least sitting at the same table and trying to compromise? I think so!  Maybe all of the fans should boycott the NFL this year even if they do settle this thing, then the owners will know who the real boss is!

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Thanks a lot Minnesota Twins!

21 01 2011

Our company has owned season tickets with the Twins for past 3 years and prior to that we’ve bought groups tickets and formed what we thought was a pretty good working relationship.  Prior to the new stadium being built we worked with our account rep to help select our seats in the new stadium.  We were able to buy 42 season tickets which totaled somewhere in the neighborhood of $70,000.  Of course, we paid this in a timely manner and everything was good!  We thought we would be considered a good customer but guess what…..I was wrong!

After the Twins were swept in October by the Yankees we spoke with our account manager to have him transfer the refund to next year’s tickets which he agreed to do.  About a month later we receive a letter from the Twins stating that we were late paying our invoice for next season and therefore they were taking away the majority our seats.

Guess what?  I went ballistic!  I actually hurt my head on the ceiling when I rocketed out of my chair.  I immediately called my rep and was unable to get in touch with him but was able to talk to the ticket manager who sent the letter.

First thing I did was call him out on the invoice ruse and the fact that our invoice payment wasn’t late (invoices were mailed near the end of the year). Can you imagine a major league team going to the trouble of lying in order to have an excuse to take our seats away?  That’s pretty low! He proceeded to tell me that they were geographically relocating our tickets to make them available to local season ticket holders. 

I tried to explain to him of all of the benefits of a broker owning them as opposed to a local season ticket holder.

1)    These tickets are sold to Twins fans that only want or only can afford to go to one or more games.

2)    Typically, these fans will spend money on merchandise as opposed to the fan that goes to dozens of games.

3)    For every ticket we sell on Stub Hub the team makes more money because they have a revenue sharing deal in place with MLB.

4)    We’re good paying customers who risk money each year on season tickets even if the teams are not so good.

All of these reasons fell on deaf ears.  I then called the president of the Twins and tried to reason with him but he was even more obstinate than the ticket manager.  I reminded him that the Twins ball park was no longer new and if the Twins started losing which at some point they will, they will be calling us back faster than a Randy Johnson fastball!

As a foot note, when we received our invoice they did send us a nice gift, a glass baseball trophy, to show their appreciation to their loyal fans….how generous!





Football Celebrations

19 10 2010

There has been a lot made recently of some of the celebrations made after a touchdown at some of the recent NFL and College games.  We have seen many flags being thrown by the referees which is their obligations according to the current rules.

Let’s examine this a little closer.  We are asking the players to play with the greatest of intensity during the game and then we’re asking these same players at the very climax of them scoring a touchdown to completely turn their emotions off.  I don’t know about you but I get pretty excited when I win a game of Monopoly, let alone a game as competitive as football.  I think the natural emotions that come with celebrating a team’s touchdown are only natural.

What I am against are two things, one taunting the players on the other team in any manner.  Examples of this might be of a players running out to the Silver Star in the middle of Texas stadium and stomping on it with his foot….can you say Terrell Owens!  This shows a lack of class and is about self promotion and self recognition in a team sport….this should not be allowed.  Another example might be a player carrying a sharpie, hidden in his sock, and using it to sign the football after catching it for a touchdown….can you say Terrell Owens!  This is not good sportsmanship and it was these antics that clearly wound up changing the league rule in the first place.  Why are we penalizing everyone including the fans for the actions of a few?  Personally, I think we should allow players to enjoy a moment of celebration after scoring a touchdown as long as it’s not self indulgent and is can be done with sportsmanship and class.





Jerry Jones-“Open the roof”!

11 10 2010

Dear Jerry Jones,

You spent over a billion dollars to build the 8th wonder of the world that includes a retractable roof so that games can be played in natural conditions when possible.

Now, I can understand keeping it closed when the temperature is over 90 degrees for both the comfort of the fans and the health of the players.  I also can understand if the temperature was less than 50 degrees not wanting to keep the roof open.  The thing I do not understand is when the temperature is between 50-85 degrees, why the roof wouldn’t automatically be opened!

Jerry, you only have a total of 10 home games. We know that the first 2 pre-season games can be eliminated from this list as well as any game in September due to the heat. This will only leave you 6 or 7 home games.  I can see the games in December possibly being eliminated unless we have a beautiful day.  This will bring our total down to either 4 or 5 games depending on the schedule each year.  Don’t you think for the fans benefit you could open the roof for the 4 or 5 games you know will be reasonably comfortable?  Otherwise, why did you build it?

It seems as big as your ego is you would want the fans to marvel at what you built.  Instead we’re just left wondering what the atmosphere would be like if you pushed the magic button to open it up. If there is some other reason, please enlighten us!

Sincerely,

Disappointed Fan!





World Cup Rules

21 06 2010

Like most of you, I have been enjoying watching the World Cup for the past week or so…. with the sound off of course!  This is clearly the best sporting event in the World but a few changes really need to be made.

I’m not quite sure why the clock can’t just stop when a player is injured.  The fact that time is added to the end of a game and the only one in the whole stadium who knows it is the referee, is messed up!  Either the referee should stop the clock when there is a definite need or have the time keeper add the exact time to the end of the game. The referee has a microphone on his head the entire game….who’s he talking to anyway?  I’m pretty certain that when the 90 minutes is up he could whisper in his microphone  ”please add 3 minutes.”  This probably would not be too hard to do.

While we’re talking about the referee, why can’t there be 2 referees, one on each half of the field?  There is just no physical way for the referee to make a good judgment call with the distance that he’s away from the play.  After all, he can’t possibly be able to watch all 22 men on the field.  Give the guy some help! 

Let’s talk about the red card.  When a referee has the power to throw a player out of the game, he in effect is changing the dynamics of the whole game. This foul should clearly be flagrant to everyone.  I’m not saying that there isn’t a need for the red card but it should be used in only the most severe cases.  I also have a problem with the yellow cards. Why do yellow cards get carried on from one match to another?  Can you imagine what would happen if they tried that in a sport like basketball?  It just doesn’t make sense!  If a player receives two yellows in a game I do understand having him sit for the remainder of the game but why the carry over rule?  That’s a rule they can definitely get rid of!

Why can’t the referee’s be scrutinized during or after the game, especially after a bad call?  They should have to be accountable to someone!  For plays that have resulted in a goal, all offside plays or penalty’s should be reviewable by replay…these games are just too important to have a game decided by a bad call!  Case in point, USA vs. Slovenia.

Soccer is a great sport! They just need to add a couple of common sense rules to make it better!





Why does baseball need instant replay?

3 06 2010

All you have to do is watch last night’s Detroit Tiger game to see why baseball needs to introduce instant replay fulltime at every game.

Everyone at the ball park was going crazy as the last out is being made. Except for one slight problem, the umpire inexplicably makes the wrong call and cost the pitcher a perfect game.

Considering the situation, you might have thought that even if the play was closer than it was (the guy was out by a mile) the umpire still might have given the call to Detroit, but he didn’t.  Now because of this bad call the pitcher cannot say that he pitched a perfect game. The players cannot say that they played on the team of someone who pitched a perfect game and the fans cannot say they attended a perfect game.

This play could have been rectified in minutes if MLB allowed instant replay to be used at every game.  Wait a minute! They do use instant replay at every game but only for home runs.  Common sense would tell you that baseball is made up of more plays then just home runs.  It consists of single, doubles, outs and double plays, etc…these plays have just as much bearing on the outcome of a game as home runs do!  A bad call on a run scoring double should be more important than a solo shot in a 6-0 game. 

How do we fix this rule without having to replay every single call?  You give each team 2 replays a game that can use on any play during the game.  If the team that called for the replay was right, they would not lose that one of their two replay reviews.  By instituting this rule it would also eliminate most of the arguments between umpires and managers as they would easily be able settle any dispute in a matter of minutes.

 All in all, there is no downside!  The game is not slowed down anymore than it already is, a blown call will be rectified quickly and perfect games would be perfect games!





Garth Brooks and Steve Wynn, The Ticket Nazi’s!

6 11 2009

Here we go again, another major performer who thinks he’s helping his fans by restricting the sale of tickets.  The latest stupidity, Garth Brooks Tickets for his limited year run at The Encore is spelled out in the “Garth Brook’s ticketing terms and conditions”.

Let me break down some of the conditions and some of the comments made at the news conference they held.

“Specific procedures have been put in place in an effort to ensure that the tickets for concerts are accessible to fans at face value and through authorized sales channels exclusively.”

As far as I know, Wynn Hotel is the only authorized seller!  If all of the tickets were sold out during the original on-sale, pretty much they’re telling you that you’re screwed if you want to see this show!  Don’t you think that “The Fans”, they profusely profess to be protecting, should have a choice to whether they would like other alternatives to buying tickets on the secondary market?  Don’t we live in America, a free market society where people can make their own decisions on how to spend their hard earned money?

 How many have you have gone to Las Vegas without planning to see a show and decide while you’re there that you would like to see one?  Well, if you want to see this one, forget about it! No chance of seeing it!  Nada! Why? Because Steve Wynn and Garth Brooks were so concerned for you on how much you “should” spend for tickets instead of how much you “would” spend for them. Now you have been virtually locked out of the concert hall with no chance of getting in!

Hey Garth and Steve…if all of the shows are sold out why do you care what happens to the tickets on the secondary market?  You can’t possibly make any more money on the tickets.  Can’t you be content on making gobs more money on all of the merchandise you’ll be selling? Instead, you want to take away our lively hood because God forbid if anyone else makes money besides you and Garth Brooks!

From the news conference, “We are taking evasive action against the ticket scalpers” Wynn warned. “People that buy seats are going to produce ID. We don’t want these being sold for $200, $300, $500 or $1000”.

People are going to produce ID? This is a country singer playing in Vegas for Christ sake not a concert at the White House!  What’s next, a strip search!  Why do the fans and the paying public have to be inconvenienced in the name of “protecting the fan from the evil broker?”  Aren’t the prices that Wynn mentioned he didn’t want the tickets sold for the same ones he uses to sell fight tickets?  But that’s okay?  Its okay to pay $1000 for a fight that sometimes only lasts a couple of minutes but not okay to pay the same for a concert?  Why not let the public decide how and where they want to spend their money? At least by opening the tickets up to the secondary market, they do have a choice!

“Tickets will be available for pick-up at Will Call at Wynn Las Vegas    after 12:00 PM on the day of the concert upon presentation of valid photo i.d., confirmation number and actual credit card used for payment. Under no circumstances will tickets be distributed in advance.”

Do I need to sacrifice my first born child to get in the theatre as well?  Will I be frisked at the door?  Do I have to wear a certain brand of jean? Come on Garth! You’re a country singer not the Ticket Gestapo!  Why don’t you worry about putting on a good show and stop worrying about who’s actually sitting in the seats.  Do you honestly believe that anyone who buys a ticket from a broker is not a fan?  Of course they’re a fan!  A fan that wasn’t able to purchase tickets when they went on sale or didn’t know when they went on sale or didn’t decide to go until after the tickets were all sold out.  A fan who doesn’t mind paying the services of a broker to get what they want!

I want to get one other thing straight. You want fans to line up to pick up the tickets, have the proper ID, and then have do it all over again upon entering the theatre…isn’t that going a little over board for 1 ½ hours of entertainment?  One simple question!  Why has no other hotel ever made its customers go to all of this trouble to see a show?

Because there is no need to do so!

The NATB, The National Association of Ticket Brokers, has been convening at The Wynn Hotel for their yearly convention the past 5 years. Hundreds of brokers come this event each year.  They spend money on rooms, food, entertainment and gambling. We have been good customers!  Steve Wynn, after all of your ridiculous comments about brokers we have a choice too….we’re moving!

Good Riddance