NFL commissioner Roger Goodell spoke today as the league’s owners wrapped up two days of meetings in Indianapolis. Here are three intriguing quotes from the commish, along with the official GLS response:
1. “They all understand the circumstances we’re going through,” Goodell said of team employees who have suffered pay cuts as a result of the work stoppage. “This is a collective sacrifice. We go through a difficult time, we go through it together. We’re all going to feel that impact.”
I agree, to an extent. These people are not complete victims. If the league gets what it’s pushing for in terms of its piece of the revenue-sharing pie, then the same employees who have been handed furloughs should be have an opportunity to make better money and receive increased benefits at a later point. This is how labor battles go — they’re always easier on the bourgeoisie than the proletarians.
2. “We don’t have a date, but obviously that time is coming,” Goodell said of the possibility that the league will have to cancel preseason games in the near future. “We canceled our rookie symposium, so we’re getting close enough where those will have to be considerations. Obviously we would prefer to get a negotiated agreement so we don’t have to make those decisions.”
As we wrote yesterday, the Hall of Fame Game is probably about a month away from being canned. In July, the league will have to come up with contingency plans for how to cram in some exhibition games prior to the start of the 2011 season. And as the lockout lingers, they’ll have to keep adjusting those plans. It’ll suck.
3. “The longer it goes the more damage is done to the game and the more revenue’s down and that means less money that can be divided between the parties,” Goodell said of the effects of an extensive lockout.
That’s the best part of this whole thing. These two sides were grappling over an extra $350 million, but a lockout with any games missed will surely cost the league and the players significantly more than that original price gap. Both sides seem to be suffering on warped principles. It’s a lose-lose debacle.