It’s hard not to like Dallas Mavericks’ owner Mark Cuban. He is essentially a self-made zillionaire who is living the everyman’s dream by owning a professional sports franchise. Cuban attends every game and treats each game like the most passionate fan would with energy and enthusiasm.
One of the things I like about Cuban is that he doesn’t shy away from speaking his mind. He is often called a loud mouth but let’s face it; those with power and money often get an audience the rest of us could only dream of having.
With all that said, Cuban couldn’t be more wrong with his recent comments about the National Football League. He believes the NFL will implode due to greed over the next ten years and while he may be right about its implosion, he’s wrong in terms of why it will happen.
Cuban said of the NFL:
“I think the NFL is 10 years away from an implosion,” Cuban said Sunday evening when his pregame conversation with reporters, which covered a broad range of topics, swayed toward football. “I’m just telling you: Pigs get fat, hogs get slaughtered. And they’re getting hoggy.
“Just watch. Pigs get fat, hogs get slaughtered. When you try to take it too far, people turn the other way. I’m just telling you, when you’ve got a good thing and you get greedy, it always, always, always, always, always turns on you. That’s rule No. 1 of business.”
Part of me wonders if Cuban, who has stated in the past he’d like to be an NFL owner, isn’t just being a whiny kid who needs to take his ball and go home.
His NBA has a nice following but he knows it’s’ a red-headed step-child compared to the NFL and that can’t sit very well with him. The golden age of the NBA has gone and what has been left behind has not been the draw Cuban and the NBA have hoped for because ratings are not great.
If Cuban really wanted to go after the NFL then he should have attacked the changes going on with the game rather than the greediness of it. If money were going to be an issue that drove fans away then that would have happened a decade ago.
Fans are over the issues of money in professional sports. That ship sailed when A-Rod signed for $25 million per year. Fans don’t like it, but what can they do about it?
What Cuban really should have said is that the NFL will implode because fans will get tired of the ever-changing product the league continues to put on the field.
Traditional NFL fans are being turned off by the ‘player safety’ mantra that has taken over the league. Games are no longer dominated by big hits and tough defenses the way they once were and the constant protecting of offensive players is forcing fans away.
New fans to the NFL will enjoy it as much as ever which is why it will remain for some time to come but make no mistake, if Mark Cuban really wanted to talk about the NFL imploding then he should have focused on the ‘on-field’ product rather than the money.
By going after television rights and complaining about how often the NFL is on TV, Cuban sounds like a whiner. Had he gone after changes in the game, he would have come off like a fan that has had enough of the wussification of the sport.
Those are the people who would listen.