One of the first byproducts of the work stoppage in the NFL apparently has to do with the images of players. While showing photos of players is a staple of NFL websites, as of Saturday morning, photos of players have been removed from many team sites.
Whether or not the NFL is covering its own legalese to avoid being accused of using the images and likenesses of players, perhaps the league is just saying if you aren’t working for us, you’re working against us.
Depending on how long the labor impasse lasts, it will be interesting to see if the NFL teams maintain this process. After all, you can only show league suits so often and for so long before fans get tired of it. Maybe it’s a psychological ploy, imbedding the seed in the minds of fans that it was the players that went away, not the teams.
Given the tense nature of statements made by both sides since negotiations broke off, it would appear that both sides are fortifying their front walls for a long fight, not the resolution both sides sound so eager to get.
With the draft coming in six weeks and, as it currently stands, no players being able to be traded for draft picks, it would seem both sides are going to feel the pain much earlier than this summer. According to team websites, the players are gone and forgotten, even though nothing could be further from the truth.
For a team that has little to no success in the sporting arena, the Minnesota Timberwolves are trying to stick their nose into the stadium issue before the State Legislature. Apparently the team is looking to have the state create a new regional sports authority that would acquire the current facilities and build two new ones, including a $155 million upgrade to Target Center. The plan would have a price tag of $1.73 billion with the funding coming from bonds issued by the Met Council, a seven-county regional planning board involved in transportation and parks purchases.
Ravens safety Tom Zbikowski clearly doesn’t have a rider in his contract that curtails his activities away from the field. Some high-profile players have clauses in their contracts that prohibit them from doing things like riding motorcycles because of the inherent dangers. Zbikowski clearly is not in that class. Saturday night, he had second “professional” boxing bout, stopping a tomato can name Richard (“Say goodnight, Dick”) Bryant at the MGM Grand in Las Vegas in just 1:45 of the first round.
The Minneapolis court case involving the NFL and its players association doesn’t automatically end up with David Doty in charge, but it would seem that is the case. Because the case is new, it was assigned to the first available judge, which happened to be the turn of Judge Richard Kyle. However, he has already filed an order disqualifying himself from hearing the case, citing a statute that doesn’t require elaboration. It’s unclear if that process will continue until the case gets to Doty. The next judge in line is Patrick J. Schiltz.
One of the producers of the 2011 Academy Award-winning documentary “Inside Job” is Jeffrey Lurie, the owner of the Philadelphia Eagles. Lurie was a movie producer prior to becoming an NFL owner, bringing the world such classics as V.I. Warshawski and I Love You to Death, and he played himself in Jerry Maguire. He has never won a Lombardi Trophy, but can one-up his ownership brethren with an Oscar nobody else can boast.
Commissioner Roger Goodell, who gets paid $10 million a year to oversee the league, said he will make good on his pledge to reduce his salary to $1 until the lockout is resolved. However, it begs the issue of pro sports when several employees make more than their ultimate boss.
John Holler has been writing about the Vikings for more than a decade for Viking Update. Follow Viking Update on Twitter and discuss this topic on our message boards. To become a subscriber to the Viking Update web site or magazine, click here.
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