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26.10.14 0210
The W - Baseball - The LA Dodgers file for bankrupcy
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Cerebus
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Since: 17.11.02

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#1 Posted on | Instant Rating: 1.33
Well THIS is interesting.

The list of creditors that they owe is pretty much the entire team. Yikes.

Silly question, is this the first time a major sports team has filed for bankruptcy? I understand that it's just a business, but this seems way different than, say, when Kmart filed or a normal 'business' entity goes bankrupt. What kind of assets does a sports team have to sell off. Can they trade off the top paid players or something.

They can't sell the brand name because MLB owns that, right? All merchandising goes through them so the Dodgers can't try and get more money that way.

(edited by Cerebus on 27.6.11 1857)


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Leroy
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Since: 7.2.02

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#2 Posted on | Instant Rating: 6.22
    Originally posted by Cerebus
    Well THIS is interesting.

    The list of creditors that they owe is pretty much the entire team. Yikes.

    Silly question, is this the first time a major sports team has filed for bankruptcy?


I believe the Texas Rangers filed for Chapter 11 bankruptcy protection last year - and then went on to play in the World Series.

This has been brewing for a LONG while now. Attendance at Dodger Stadium for the Freeway Series this past weekend was at an all time low (although the Angels have sold out their hosting of the Dodgers this weekend). The fans have finally had enough of The McCourts and their nonsense.

(edited by Leroy on 27.6.11 1504)
Mr. Boffo
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Since: 24.3.02
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#3 Posted on | Instant Rating: 7.60
    Originally posted by Cerebus

    What kind of assets does a sports team have to sell off. Can they trade off the top paid players or something.


And from what I understand there's difficulty because the team assets are divided into several different holding companies. One company owns the team, one company owns the stadium, a third company owns the land, and a fourth company controls ticket sales. McCourt's lawyers believe that MLB can only take the team operations from him, which means a big payday for him when they have to buy the other companies. MLB respectfully disagrees with this line of thinking, but it does mean more litigation to resolve it.

As for sports teams in bankruptcy protection, I saw an article that says in addition to the Texas Rangers, the Seattle Pilots were in bankruptcy protection when ole Bud Selig bought them and moved them to Milwaukee. And the first article also lists the NHL's Phoenix Coyotes as a team that went into bankruptcy protection.
The Thrill
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Since: 16.4.02
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#4 Posted on | Instant Rating: 5.04
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    Originally posted by Cerebus
    Well THIS is interesting.

    Silly question, is this the first time a major sports team has filed for bankruptcy?


Counting the Dodgers, 11 different major sports franchises have filed...none from the NFL or NBA. So sayeth The Wall Street Journal.





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odessasteps
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Since: 2.1.02
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#5 Posted on | Instant Rating: 5.98

Texas was in bankruptcy court last year and then went to the World Series.



Mark Coale
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ISSUE FOUR - OCTOBER 2009
DrDirt
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Since: 8.10.03
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#6 Posted on | Instant Rating: 9.71
Question. Wouldn't you think in a metro area as large as LA that teams could draw better professionally? Outside of the Lakers and maybe the Angels, it seems there aren't many hardcore fans of pro sports. I know the weather is great etc. but I would think the Dodgers would average 30,000+ a game. It's got to be more than just ownership.

They can't seem to really support the NFL and yet the NFL keeps trying to get a team there. Just seems odd.



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TheOldMan
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Since: 13.2.03
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#7 Posted on | Instant Rating: 4.78
    Originally posted by DrDirt
    Question. Wouldn't you think in a metro area as large as LA that teams could draw better professionally? Outside of the Lakers and maybe the Angels, it seems there aren't many hardcore fans of pro sports. I know the weather is great etc. but I would think the Dodgers would average 30,000+ a game. It's got to be more than just ownership.

    They can't seem to really support the NFL and yet the NFL keeps trying to get a team there. Just seems odd.


IANA.. Angelino but - I know the Dodgers have perennially been among the leaders in attendance, even if the crowds have that reputation for leaving in the 7th. Lots of fanbases would be discouraged by having an ownership failing like the McCourt regime appears to be.

Lakers do all right with drawing 20,000 or so high-end customers, and the Clippers are just starting to put a decent team on the floor that would be a fair case to see how well a second NBA team can draw there. And the Kings are as solid as any of the NHL 'southern' expansion franchises.

The problem with football is the stadium. The Rams, and later the Raiders played in the Coliseum, which is pretty much 95,000 bleacher seats in a single-tiered bowl. Fine if you're USC and have 40,000 students helping to fill it up - not so great for an NFL team operating under home blackout rules. The Rams moving to a baseball field in Anaheim was better, but hardly ideal.

And if an owner isn't getting a sweet stadium deal, they aren't going to compete financially. Hence St. Louis and a stadium was preferable to remaining in LA. Luxury boxes and PSA fees are just new revenue streams that LA can't provide a prospective NFL franchise with their existing venues.



Leroy
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Since: 7.2.02

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#8 Posted on | Instant Rating: 6.22
    Originally posted by DrDirt
    It's got to be more than just ownership.

    They can't seem to really support the NFL and yet the NFL keeps trying to get a team there. Just seems odd.


I think it's a number of things - apparently, Dodger stadium itself is in pretty bad shape. The fanbase that does attend is predominately Raider-iffic (i.e. drunken douchebags), and the Dodgers' record over the last 10 years (even with Torre and Ramirez - both of whom were, if nothing else, draws) hasn't been great. Add the ownership drama to the mix, and I think people just find ways of not going to the game.

And I do think SoCal fans are also a bit more "fair weather" than in other parts of the country. And this stuff with the Dodgers has been going on for a while.

I read an interesting article about the attendance of the freeway series. It wasn't just that attendance was down, it was that a large number of folks who paid for tickets didn't show up.

The NFL thing is interesting. There seems to be a big push for a stadium near the convention center, but who knows...

    Originally posted by TheOldMan
    The Rams moving to a baseball field in Anaheim was better, but hardly ideal.


It wasn't a "baseball stadium" until well after the Rams had left. When it became clear that it was going to take a new stadium to keep the Rams in L.A., the local media was all over Georgia Frontiere - because there was nothing wrong with Anaheim Stadium (or the other stadiums, for that matter) and it was clear that she was making a power play to justify moving the team. A team that, at that point, righteously sucked, by the way...

Sec19Row53
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Since: 2.1.02
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#9 Posted on | Instant Rating: 5.96
    Originally posted by Leroy
    I read an interesting article about the attendance of the freeway series. It wasn't just that attendance was down, it was that a large number of folks who paid for tickets didn't show up.


I'm not sure about that, because I'm pretty sure that tickets sold are what gets reported as "attendance" these days in MLB. It makes it rough on Cubs radio announcers for their "guess the attendance" game when there's a boatload of empty seats.
Leroy
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Since: 7.2.02

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#10 Posted on | Instant Rating: 6.22
    Originally posted by Sec19Row53
    I'm not sure about that, because I'm pretty sure that tickets sold are what gets reported as "attendance" these days in MLB.


The point is that the "unofficial attendance" is a lot lower than "official attendance", meaning people who have already paid for the tickets aren't going to the games - implying that the experience at the stadium must be pretty bad if people are going to give up tickets for which they've already paid.

And considering that the freeway series sold out a few miles away the following weekend, that can't be a good sign.

FWIW, here's the article I read.

Dodgers’ fans disguised as empty seats (bostonherald.com)


    And this year’s figures don’t include thousands of no-shows that on some nights reduce actual attendance to around 20,000, according to a longtime usher I chatted with Saturday.

    The upper reaches of Dodger Stadium in right and left field near the foul poles were empty Saturday, but there also were plenty of empty yellow seats in the most expensive seating areas behind home plate and on the entire lower level. Those are seats that already are paid for.
thecubsfan
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Since: 10.12.01
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#11 Posted on | Instant Rating: 9.59
    Originally posted by Sec19Row53
    It makes it rough on Cubs radio announcers for their "guess the attendance" game when there's a boatload of empty seats.


Yes! They're getting destroyed this year with all the no-shows (or scalper tickets gone unsold.)


    meaning people who have already paid for the tickets aren't going to the games


and, importantly, spending $0 on parking/food/drinks/souvenirs. Every team expects a team to spend a certain extra amount of money past the ticket price once they're in the stadium, which isn't being spent if they're making it thru the doors. You'd rather sell the tickets than not sell the tickets, but this is still a problem.



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odessasteps
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Since: 2.1.02
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#12 Posted on | Instant Rating: 5.98

If you were a middle class family of four (or anyone really), would you want to spend $$ to go to a place where someone was beaten almost to death, just for wearing the wrong jersey?



Mark Coale
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It's False
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Since: 20.6.02
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#13 Posted on | Instant Rating: 7.17
    Originally posted by odessasteps

    If you were a middle class family of four (or anyone really), would you want to spend $$ to go to a place where someone was beaten almost to death, just for wearing the wrong jersey?


Yeah, that's pretty much the tipping point out here. The dip in attendance is really a combination of:

-The increase in ticket prices, parking ($15???), and concessions.
-The team isn't particularly any good.
-No one's getting attached to the players that are good, because everyone's caught on that those players are bolting for greener pastures as soon as their contracts end, since the team can't afford to lock them up long-term. (Hell, Andre Ethier already said at the start of the season that he's bailing out on L.A. after this season, since there's no way the team can pay him long-term.)
-No one's trying to make the team any better. The team purposely tanked their draft picks, because they didn't want to add them to the payroll.
-Manny Ramirez MURDERED this team and its fanbase in terms of morale and money, since the Dodgers still owe him money through 2014. He's still their highest-paid player RIGHT NOW! Is it any wonder why it was so easy for him to retire earlier this year?
-The stadium has rapidly been taken over by Mexican gangbangers. And since Frank McCourt originally scaled back on security because of financial issues, no one feels safe at the ballpark anymore.

It isn't worth blowing $100+ for a family of four to go to a stadium filled with drunken gangbangers for a team that isn't any good, just so your kid can get attached to a ballplayer that's probably leaving for a better team at the first opportunity.

In short, the Dodgers just suck.

(edited by It's False on 28.6.11 1310)


redsoxnation
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Since: 24.7.02

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#14 Posted on | Instant Rating: 5.28
    Originally posted by It's False
      Originally posted by odessasteps

      If you were a middle class family of four (or anyone really), would you want to spend $$ to go to a place where someone was beaten almost to death, just for wearing the wrong jersey?


    Yeah, that's pretty much the tipping point out here. The dip in attendance is really a combination of:

    -The increase in ticket prices, parking ($15???), and concessions.
    -The team isn't particularly any good.
    -No one's getting attached to the players that are good, because everyone's caught on that those players are bolting for greener pastures as soon as their contracts end, since the team can't afford to lock them up long-term. (Hell, Andre Ethier already said at the start of the season that he's bailing out on L.A. after this season, since there's no way the team can pay him long-term.)





    -No one's trying to make the team any better. The team purposely tanked their draft picks, because they didn't want to add them to the payroll.
    -Manny Ramirez MURDERED this team and its fanbase in terms of morale and money, since the Dodgers still owe him money through 2014. He's still their highest-paid player RIGHT NOW! Is it any wonder why it was so easy for him to retire earlier this year?
    -The stadium has rapidly been taken over by Mexican gangbangers. And since Frank McCourt originally scaled back on security because of financial issues, no one feels safe at the ballpark anymore.

    It isn't worth blowing $100+ for a family of four to go to a stadium filled with drunken gangbangers for a team that isn't any good, just so your kid can get attached to a ballplayer that's probably leaving for a better team at the first opportunity.

    In short, the Dodgers just suck.

    (edited by It's False on 28.6.11 1310)





I think for $15 you can get a parking spot about 20 miles away from Fenway. In hindsight, the McCourt's not getting the team was one of the greatest days in Red Sox history.
Dodger Stadium at this point I believe the 3rd oldest stadium in baseball. When the Red Sox struggled at that point in the stadium's history, they drew crap and people called the stadium a dump. They started winning, and they drew to a lyric little bandbox. Winning is what draw people, except in Tampa. In the early 90's, the Yankees needed to move out of the Bronx because it was unsafe for people to go their. Then, they started winning and drawing 4 million. Toronto and Baltimore drew large crowds in their great ballparks, until they sucked and now draw nothing. Winning isn't everything, it is the only thing when it comes to attendance. Except, of course, in Tampa.

(edited by redsoxnation on 28.6.11 1926)
supersalvadoran
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Since: 10.1.08
From: westbury, new york

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#15 Posted on | Instant Rating: 0.73
    Originally posted by redsoxnation
    I think for $15 you can get a parking spot about 20 miles away from Fenway. In hindsight, the McCourt's not getting the team was one of the greatest days in Red Sox history.
    Dodger Stadium at this point I believe the 3rd oldest stadium in baseball. When the Red Sox struggled at that point in the stadium's history, they drew crap and people called the stadium a dump. They started winning, and they drew to a lyric little bandbox. Winning is what draw people, except in Tampa. In the early 90's, the Yankees needed to move out of the Bronx because it was unsafe for people to go their. Then, they started winning and drawing 4 million. Toronto and Baltimore drew large crowds in their great ballparks, until they sucked and now draw nothing. Winning isn't everything, it is the only thing when it comes to attendance. Except, of course, in Tampa.

    (edited by redsoxnation on 28.6.11 1926)



As far as parking spots go, $15 at Fenway is actually a bargain compared to Yankee Stadium. It's a big deal here that people won't go right now because the lots and buildings within several miles around the stadium are charging at least $35 to 40 for the game. A total ripoff and the team and city can't seem to do anything about it at this point.

Now as far as your main point goes, I agree winning is a key element of a financially successful team but not the only one. The thing about Chavez Ravine is that while it's old, it's not as old and to many not as nostalgic as Fenway and Wrigley are. They have been around since about the 1920's and 1930's, when Ruth was king and baseball really took off. LA has had that stadium since 1962, not exactly a well remembered time for baseball. I also have to point out in the case of the Cubs that while they have sucked for a majority of recent history, they still get sold out or near sold out crowds at a regular basis. And both Wrigley and Fenway have adjusted their places to get more fans to watch; I don't remember Dodger Stadium being renovated or modernized recently.

Winning helps out a good bit but having a good brand name can be as big a help as well. A good team financially will be able to get their fanbase to buy their product, almost no matter how good or bad their record is. It's why the Cowboys can sell out their huge stadium and tons of other products despite failing miserably to get to the Super Bowl. It's why the Montreal Canadiens, despite not winning the Stanley Cup in nearly 20 years, can still attract some of the biggest the biggest crowds when they play the Islanders in the Coliseum. They have won numerous titles sure, yet it's something else about the name, the 'colors', the history that attracts fans and keep them coming.

In the end, I think the Dodgers are one of the biggest 'names' in baseball. To see them in this mess is sad even though it's been pointed out the mess is mostly with McCourt himself and not the team. Once he is gone, hopefully the team can recover pretty quickly. Like I said, it's still a big name team and a recently successful one that can be a division and NL title contender once again.

And as far Tampa goes, I would adjust the wording to 'the whole state of Florida'. I mean, if a team contending for the playoffs for the past several seasons and can't sell out is a bad thing, how awful is a team with two world series victories in 6 years and can't sell out?


(edited by supersalvadoran on 29.6.11 0248)

(edited by supersalvadoran on 29.6.11 0250)











odessasteps
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Since: 2.1.02
From: MD, USA

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#16 Posted on | Instant Rating: 5.98

Having gone to Fenway for the first time last year, I can't imagine trying to park near the stadium.

I stayed out in the suburbs and took the Metro to the stadium.





Mark Coale
Odessa Steps Magazine presents


RUSSIAN FLAG BURIAL - an examination of 1984 mid-south


DrDirt
Banger








Since: 8.10.03
From: flyover country

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#17 Posted on | Instant Rating: 9.71
Are we getting to the point we the "average" person simply can't afford to attend a major league pro sporting event? How much of a teams revenue comes from live attendance? I know it varies by sport and all but the TV revenues, especially for football and probably many baseball teams is huge compared to attendance.



Perception is reality
Sec19Row53
Lap cheong








Since: 2.1.02
From: Oconomowoc, WI

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Y!:
#18 Posted on | Instant Rating: 5.96
    Originally posted by Leroy
      Originally posted by Sec19Row53
      I'm not sure about that, because I'm pretty sure that tickets sold are what gets reported as "attendance" these days in MLB.


    The point is that the "unofficial attendance" is a lot lower than "official attendance", meaning people who have already paid for the tickets aren't going to the games - implying that the experience at the stadium must be pretty bad if people are going to give up tickets for which they've already paid.

    And considering that the freeway series sold out a few miles away the following weekend, that can't be a good sign.

    FWIW, here's the article I read.

    Dodgers’ fans disguised as empty seats (bostonherald.com)


      And this year’s figures don’t include thousands of no-shows that on some nights reduce actual attendance to around 20,000, according to a longtime usher I chatted with Saturday.

      The upper reaches of Dodger Stadium in right and left field near the foul poles were empty Saturday, but there also were plenty of empty yellow seats in the most expensive seating areas behind home plate and on the entire lower level. Those are seats that already are paid for.


Gotcha. The disposable income not getting spent by those empty seats was a line of thinking that hadn't hit me over the head.
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