NBA, NFL & MLB: Bargaining Power


Kyrie Irving   Photo: Keith Allison-Flickr

To use something to maximum advantage is to leverage: 

As long as there are rules and officials there will be calls that range from the questionable to the downright horrible.  But since when did an overzealous parent/coach have an opportunity to leverage his fame in order to dictate the entire flow of a tournament?  Apparently the answer is…..very recently.  The downside of allowing such asinine behavior should be obvious….a slippery slope is never a fun ride. Coaches who lack the capacity to stay in their lane…should be given the freedom to walk off a court.  Followed up with a disqualification….ultimately left explaining their actions to disappointed players and hot as fish grease parents who’ve utilized valuable time & finances to attend the event.  

The removal of officials based on a coach’s displeasure rests on the cowardly shoulders of the organization who takes such absurd actions. Expectations are low for the lengths of how far some will go for attention.  However, much, much more is expected of the decision makers.  Giving power of that magnitude to a person thirsty for power of that magnitude is a terrible precedence to set.

It doesn’t make sense to me why Kyrie would want to be traded this year.  Surely nobody gets tired of playing for trophies do they?  I’d suspect the cause goes much deeper than that.  From the outside looking in, a blind man can see how…by virtue of being the best player in the world, LBJ has a phenomenal amount of leverage on the team.  Even while fully acknowledging his greatness & enjoying the ride of being at the top of the heap for consecutive years….I can imagine playing second fiddle, especially when you are an instrumental fiddle…pun not intended..can get real old.real fast!! 

Kyrie has plenty of leverage of his own.  Without his consistent hustle game….is JR Smith going shirtless—for far too long—in celebration of the franchise’s first championship? There appears to be plenty of that “l” stuff to go around though….Irving is under contract—Cleveland doesn’t have to let him go.  Wanting to be traded and being traded are two entirely different animals.  The saga continues….

Speaking of sagas….the Baltimore Ravens appear to have pen in hand…yet fearful of the leverage fans may have.  Hmmm let’s see…your starting qb has back issues and there’s a guy with better than backup talent willing to be…your backup.  Sign him!  Should he play a role in making the club serious championship contenders….that same fan base will be kneeling themselves—to the football gods for sending him their way!  

For far too long whether Steve Bartman would have any peace was leveraged on the Chicago Cubs winning a championship.  The treatment he received after the infamous foul ball incident of 2003…which by the way he wasn’t the only fan to attempt grabbing the ball…was hands down one of the most shameful in sports history!  Displacement at its worse was on display….newsflash folks:  if your team has not won in (insert number of years) it is because they haven’t been good enough!  It is not a curse, not some poor, unsuspecting farm animal….it is failure to put together a team worthy of winning it all and/or failure of a championship caliber team to execute plays in a manner that actually translates to winning a championship.  Period!  Don’t know how much peace a ring will bring to Bartman…but I sure hope it lasts longer than a Communications position at the White House!

Finally, from the Good News Leverage Chronicles: It was totally refreshing to see MLB relinquish the World Series.  Gone are the days when the All-Star game’s winner determined home field advantage throughout the series…..versus the winning record of a 162 game season.  For the record….as long as the NBA’s All-Star game continues to lack any defensive prowess whatsoever, and the NFL’s Pro-Bowl takes on the look and feel of high level touch football….baseball will continue to reign supreme and get the coveted A for effort rating in exhibition games!

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