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Judge Nelson sticks up for the fans

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At a time when the NFL and the players have said that they care about the fans when in reality they don’t (more accurately, they don’t care enough about the fans to set aside greed and work out the labor dispute), Judge Susan Nelson has acknowledged the impact of the work stoppage on the fans in ending it.

The factors for granting a “preliminary injunction” blocking the lockout include the presence of irreparable harm on the part of the players, a likelihood of success at trial on the legal and factual issues presented by the case, a balancing of the hardships between the players and the owners, and the public interest.

As to the last factor, Judge Nelson recognized that the public needs its football.

“[T]he public ramifications of this dispute exceed the abstract principles of the antitrust laws, as professional football involves many layers of tangible economic impact, ranging from broadcast revenues down to concessions sales,” Judge Nelson writes at page 87 of her 89-page written ruling.  “And, of course, the public interest represented by the fans of professional football — who have a strong investment in the 2011 season — is an intangible interest that weighs against the lockout.  In short, this particular employment dispute is far from a purely private argument over compensation.”

That’s possibly the most accurate paragraph written by anyone in any capacity regarding this mess — especially since someone finally doing something to advance interests of the fans.

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130 Responses to “Judge Nelson sticks up for the fans”
  1. toiletking says: Apr 25, 2011 7:21 PM

    Tell it like it is, Judge Judy. Let’s end this garbage now and get back to some football!

  2. jakek2 says: Apr 25, 2011 7:22 PM

    Judge Nelson ROCKS!!!! Super-smart jurist. No way is her decision getting overturned.

    Owners getting taken to the woodshed by DeMo and Co.!

    Hopefully owners will appeal, lose AGAIN and have to pay the players’ attorneys’ fees to boot!!

    HAHAHAHAHA!!! Greedy sobs getting smacked down!

  3. whathappenedtovox says: Apr 25, 2011 7:24 PM

    I want to date you, Judge Nelson.

  4. cytofed says: Apr 25, 2011 7:24 PM

    Love the judge’s ruling, the owners has got to wonder if the judge is a fan herself.

  5. promin1 says: Apr 25, 2011 7:24 PM

    This whole thing has become ridiculous. I for one don’t even give a crap about the NFL anymore. This thing has turned me off that much. They knew this was coming and still did nothing to stop it. 9 billion dollars and they still can’t figure out how to divide this pie. How bout using some of that money on lowering ticket prices, beer, food so that the fans that make all this possible aren’t getting bent over going to see a game. Thats whats actually going to ruin the game. When nobody can afford to go to a live game. Greedy Jerkoffs.

  6. eagles83 says: Apr 25, 2011 7:25 PM

    You rock Nelson.

  7. lionfan419 says: Apr 25, 2011 7:25 PM

    Go Lions!

  8. puntpasskick says: Apr 25, 2011 7:26 PM

    Whatever gets this done quicker, the better…

  9. dryheaveone says: Apr 25, 2011 7:27 PM

    Allright, Judge Nelson!!…..is there somewhere I can buy a robe with her number on it?….or maybe an autographed gavel?

  10. eyefeeler says: Apr 25, 2011 7:27 PM

    I think this furthers a mess of a situation and the ruining of a system that worked. Rules are in place to prevent…whatever. If I was an owner I’d sell now so I don’t have to shut the doors in ten years because my team sucks because I can’t afford to buy talent.

  11. stixzidinia says: Apr 25, 2011 7:28 PM

    Oh god there is no “impact” on the fans. The NFL is an entertainment product, just like American Idol. If the NFL ceased to exist the fans would forget about it and simply move on to something else. Stop being so dramatic.

  12. melikefootball says: Apr 25, 2011 7:28 PM

    What really do the fans get out of this? How much more tension will there be between owners and players with players feeling they have the upper hand. More and more of the agents will get huffy when dealing with players and contracts. Ticket prices will go up, NFL junk will go up and all things dealing with the stadiums and concessions. A game we all enjoyed may be not as great come Sunday afternoons.

  13. njdevil7 says: Apr 25, 2011 7:28 PM

    Right now, I’m more of a Judge Nelson fan than I am a Jets fan.

  14. macgee10 says: Apr 25, 2011 7:28 PM

    OH YES!!!!!!!

  15. crosbyhasgonorrhea says: Apr 25, 2011 7:29 PM

    Its good to see at least one person in that court room gets it.

  16. duanethomas says: Apr 25, 2011 7:29 PM

    Players 2 Owners 0

    Next win for players Eight Circuit.

    Remember thumbs down pro-player…LOL!

    The smart owners got their arse handed to them.

    DeMaurice Smith is the man and a genius!

    The Players are killing the owners in this fight!

  17. harmcityhomer says: Apr 25, 2011 7:30 PM

    They do not need to shut the game down while they work out new rules. The NFL operated without a CBA from 87-93.

  18. descendency says: Apr 25, 2011 7:30 PM

    I love you, Judge Nelson.

    I LOVE YOU.

  19. skoobyfl says: Apr 25, 2011 7:30 PM

    This has legs, for more legalities.

  20. crycal says: Apr 25, 2011 7:30 PM

    How in the hell is giving the players what they want good for the fans. THEY are the ones looking to end the draft, free agency, and anything else that keeps the NFL competitive. This ruling will overflow into all other sports leagues…MLB, NBA.etc…… If this ruling stands it could very easily change the face of sports all together. Then you want to talk about greed. You will see the greed of the owners and players then when there are no rules to govern their actions.
    I would just like to think the a magistrate judge would be intelligent enough to see through the farce of the NFLPA decertification.

  21. imachanfan says: Apr 25, 2011 7:31 PM

    ARE YOU READY FOR SOME FOOTBALL ????

    Way to go Judge Judy!!!

  22. rockymtnphinfan says: Apr 25, 2011 7:31 PM

    I LOVE Jud Nelson!!!

    Nice work Judge, and thank you for thinking of the people that make all these idiots employable and profitable.

  23. leftysmoke says: Apr 25, 2011 7:32 PM

    I like this Judge Nelson lady. President Obama picked a winner. Now let the ruling stand so everyone’s favorite team can start their signings and re-energize the off season!

    GO COLTS!

  24. eyefeeler says: Apr 25, 2011 7:33 PM

    Serfdom is over, thus closing the mill. The Feudal System turned round. No one likes being in the class they’re in.

  25. grizzlyfox says: Apr 25, 2011 7:33 PM

    My interest as a fan is in the future of the league as it is currently structured.

    I would imagine that’s how most fans feel, so kind of a lame public interest argument here, seeing as how this ruling allows for the possibility of a completely revamped NFL.

  26. radrntn says: Apr 25, 2011 7:34 PM

    i am still confused, even if the players win, lockout is lifted, yada yada yada, what keeps the owners from cutting or “firing” all of these guys and bringing in all new players at a lower pay. At least under a cba the players had some rights, now they have nothing, but the hopes that the owners are willing to pay them as much as possible.

  27. scytherius says: Apr 25, 2011 7:34 PM

    Bingo.

  28. chapnastier says: Apr 25, 2011 7:36 PM

    This will ruin the NFL and the future NBA CBA. Folks I don’t think you people understand the implications here. If she cared about the fans she would have locked all the parties in the room and not let them leave until they came to a deal.

  29. hobartbaker says: Apr 25, 2011 7:37 PM

    Nice sentiment, but just prolongs the agony. It is Mom telling you “this is going to hurt me more than it hurts you.”. No it didn’t.

  30. scytherius says: Apr 25, 2011 7:38 PM

    @stixzidinia

    Of COURSE there is impact on the fans. Many have purchased season tickets. The loss of a significant entertainment product IS impact. What, you think that “impact” only applies to bread and water?

    “Significant impact” is a specific term of art in the law. It has a specific meaning. It is a finding required by a judge before they can issue this type of ruling. It’s best you know what you are talking about before you speak.

    Thank god no one like you sat on the bench when I was in practice. *sigh*

  31. jo3jo says: Apr 25, 2011 7:39 PM

    More leverage for the players in this instance means more push for dismembering of the draft, free agency salary caps and other rules that promote league parity. Without that, big market teams will have an advantage every year and unless you are a Giants fan you are going to see all your home grown stars migrate to the bigger cities year after year. Like in MLB — it’s great if you are a Yankees fan, but not so great for the permanent residents of the other end of the division races. So sure, it’s a “victory” for the fans in that it makes it more likely that something will be resolved before the new season. But it may end up being a resolution that leaves us with a game that doesn’t resemble football. What will help fans is a finding that football is exempt from antitrust laws in certain instances. Short of that any ruling is bad for the fans.

  32. mrone50 says: Apr 25, 2011 7:39 PM

    Yeah Judge Nelson Rocks! All the Rush Phlegmbaugh drones will be up all night thinking of questions and rants to call in… and even more worried about being up all night and not having their call taken. I love demcracy sometimes.

  33. ravenution says: Apr 25, 2011 7:39 PM

    I still love the NFL and wilOpl watch and so will the rest of you jackoffs. That said, im on no ones side but mine when it comes to this drama. The NFL is entertainment. I have zero attachments to these guys. Just entertain me. Thet

  34. txchief says: Apr 25, 2011 7:39 PM

    This is a completely messed up ruling. Susan Nelson is trying to create new law knowing she will be immediately reversed on appeal. If a business can be forced to operate against its’ will, free enterprise and capitalism have been completely destroyed.

    Of course, the league has argued jurisdiction and nothing else. Boies knew this was an appellate case to begin with.

    The ultimate arrogance here is that the current playas think they ARE the game. The game of football belongs to all that have played it at any level, and the league and owners that perpetuate it at the games’ highest level. Football will survive the current NFL and NFLPA/NFLPA*.

  35. discosucs2005 says: Apr 25, 2011 7:40 PM

    @stixzidinia

    “Oh god there is no “impact” on the fans.”

    I agree with your overall point. I have an breaking news email update, and was disappointed that the judges ruling didn’t really qualify as news outside of the sports world.

    However, saying there is “no” impact is too far. We are all NFL fans here (I’m assuming), and, while no one will die if the NFL stopped existing, it would suck. No matter what you choose for entertainment: music, books, movies, magazines, sitcoms, it would have an impact on your life if they just went away. Some people see the NFL as their main form of entertainment, you can’t say taking it away would have “no” impact.

  36. dontcallmepete says: Apr 25, 2011 7:40 PM

    I think this furthers a mess of a situation and the ruining of a system that worked. Rules are in place to prevent…whatever. If I was an owner I’d sell now so I don’t have to shut the doors in ten years because my team sucks because I can’t afford to buy talent.
    ————————————-
    Then you would be an idiot. If you were losing money and you walked out of an agreement that YOU signed because of this and your players said “Show us where you’re losing money” and you wouldn’t then you’d be a liar.

    If a player says the word renegotiate everybody says that he shouldn’t have signed the deal. Owners do it and you guys blame the players.

  37. wetpaperbag2 says: Apr 25, 2011 7:41 PM

    Judge Nelson probably has a fantasy league and she does NOT plan on cancelling her fantasy draft party!

  38. murraysons says: Apr 25, 2011 7:42 PM

    89 freakin pages? Wow..

  39. dontcallmepete says: Apr 25, 2011 7:42 PM

    How in the hell is giving the players what they want good for the fans. THEY are the ones looking to end the draft, free agency, and anything else that keeps the NFL competitive.
    ———————————————
    The players want the game as it is. I’m curious, tell us where we can check YOUR facts?

  40. evolmonkey says: Apr 25, 2011 7:43 PM

    I don’t know why anyone thinks she is sticking up for the fans. Everything that I’ve been reading, scare tactics or not, is saying that a lot of players don’t believe in a draft, free agency, or any limits that I believe have made football the game it is today. I don’t want big market teams to dominate because there are no rules. The owners are the individuals that have put these rules in place so that we have a fair and balanced sport. We as fans should be supporting them. Who cares if they are billionaires and want more dollars. All that matters to me is the integrity of the sport and as far as I can tell the owners do too.

  41. beerndonuts says: Apr 25, 2011 7:43 PM

    Hmmm, I’m pretty sure Judge Nelson stuck up for her political mindset, regardless of what she wrote in her decision.

    For everyone that’s excited/angry over the decision, it’s my understanding that this particular Court of Appeals (and presumably the SC afterward) tend to favor the owner’s position, so this is but one more step in a lengthy process.

    Either way, it’s given everyone an afternoon of article writing/reading…

  42. darthvader89 says: Apr 25, 2011 7:45 PM

    Anybody have a clue as to when the 8th Appeals court will rule on granting a stay or not?

  43. nflpasux says: Apr 25, 2011 7:45 PM

    Judge Nelson sticks it TO the fans.

    This has to be the stupidest article written at PFT. Judge Nelson’s decision is a step, albeit a small one, towards satisfying the NFLPA’s objective of destroying the NFL’s business model by voiding the draft and salary cap.

  44. mimitaroo says: Apr 25, 2011 7:46 PM

    So you’re saying ythe public was important enough to be mentioned on page 87 of 89?

  45. stevem7 says: Apr 25, 2011 7:46 PM

    I think this judge learned the law at the same place as Marsha Clark and Lance Ito. She hasn’t a clue and one wonders HOW she was ever appointed to the bench.

  46. commandercornpone says: Apr 25, 2011 7:47 PM

    she tried to stick up for the players. but they have no union. that should mean… no rules.

  47. chedberg says: Apr 25, 2011 7:47 PM

    Forget about professional athletes being role models, Judge Nelson is my new hero.

    Can’t we just let her look over the situation and have her write the new CBA so we can just move on!!

  48. beastofeden says: Apr 25, 2011 7:49 PM

    “At a time when the NFL and the players have said that they care about the fans when in reality they don’t …..”

    Does anyone care about anything besides them selves and their money? The NFL and players are no different.

    Judge Nelson, if she really is a “Judge”, needs to stop wasting time writing 89 page manifestos that ultimatly, no one will read more than a paragraph of.

  49. wwwfella says: Apr 25, 2011 7:50 PM

    man f..k the judge, the union and the owners!

  50. JimmySmith says: Apr 25, 2011 7:51 PM

    Since she lives in Minneapolis, its hard to say if she is a fan of pro football since the local team is only the Vikings.

  51. clownburger says: Apr 25, 2011 7:51 PM

    HELLO – THIS CHANGES NOTHING

    The owners are favored to overturn this in appeal.

    Even if they didn’t all it means is that they have to set some non-union rules in order. And they can pretty much do whatever they want. I say they should stick it to the moron players with the new rules.

    The owners want a CBA agreement though. Too bad the moron players don’t.

    I currently hate the players.

  52. canuck54143 says: Apr 25, 2011 7:51 PM

    Why is it that the NFLPA* has had their cases decided so quickly, yet when it comes to the NFL’s lawsuit about the NFLPA decert. being Sham isn’t really talked about? The players had the TV money issue taken care of and now the Lock out will be lifted. Can anyone explain, and what if the other court sides with the NFL and says NFLPA* is really a sham?

  53. chedberg says: Apr 25, 2011 7:51 PM

    @stixzidinia,

    No impact to the fans, how about all the people that depend on the game for their livelihood throughout the season.

    I’m sorry, let me simply it for you.

    Ahh duhhh people work and get paid for it and need the football season to do it.

  54. Packernet says: Apr 25, 2011 7:51 PM

    So long Packers. Glad I got to see 4 Super Bowl wins in my lifetime. It was a nice 92-year run, though.

  55. pitch87mph says: Apr 25, 2011 7:52 PM

    I just have to respectfully disagree. The implication that follows from her statement is that in cases where there is a supposed and subjectively determined “public interest”, private parties must continue to maintain the status quo–even if such actions could results in significant harm to themselves! I find that appalling.

    Now the likely reality is that owners aren’t being harmed to such a degree that they couldn’t absorb said harm to a certain degree, and adjust accordingly. But let’s suppose that was not the case. Let’s suppose that NFL owners are truly facing significant financial risk/ruin without obtaining relief on employment costs. Nelson is basically saying that that’s just tough luck! The subjective “intangible” harm to the public outweighs the tangible financial harm to the owners. I find that to be indefensible! First of all, it’s highly subjective. While I LOVE football, there are some people who HATE it (I know some wives that wish it didn’t exist). Is the “intangible” benefit of NO football to those wives somehow inherently less valuable than the intangible benefit of football to fans?

    Granted, it’s not like owners are presenting their financial statements to the court and showing significant harm to themselves. Whether that would change the equation or not, is unclear based on the language in her ruling. Her statement is WAY too broad. Forcing ownership to operate under conditions they feel are against their best interests strikes me as legally and morally wrong.

    I’m not an antitrust lawyer, and don’t pretend to be one. So while her ruling may be “right”, imo, it is definitely NOT for that particular reason. And if that’s the primary justification for her decision, I frankly expect this to be overturned.

    Jeff

  56. wvuandsteelers says: Apr 25, 2011 7:52 PM

    Does this judge have any idea of the law she was ruling on? Her putting the fans interest in her ruling is akin to saying at a murder trial “Well, the media seems to have convicted you, so I’m just going to convict you as well. It seems like the right thing to do.” Considering they had a lockout (as have many other sports leagues) that have been legal in the past, how do they just suddenly become illegal?

  57. txchief says: Apr 25, 2011 7:53 PM

    This situation is a travesty if you are a person who plays by the rules and expects others to do so as well.

  58. canuck54143 says: Apr 25, 2011 7:53 PM

    This is going to end up a bill in congress

  59. cornellsteelers says: Apr 25, 2011 7:53 PM

    So what? There still is no CBA, and the two sides are no closer together now than they were before this ruling came out. Maybe we should hold the hosannas and see how this plays out.

  60. wcman says: Apr 25, 2011 7:53 PM

    Sigh…This is not going to lead to football anytime soon people. All it does is move the fight to another court for an appeal. The best thing that could have happened here, would’ve been for her to order them to settle things through collective bargaining beginning immediately. The players getting what they want is not good for the game. It leads to a wild west type setup and eventually to a baseball outcome of haves and havenots.

    The players don’t want to negotiate. They want status quo, or worse, which doesn’t work. At some point the fans are going to get priced out completely.

  61. 7pints says: Apr 25, 2011 7:54 PM

    Wow. Who are these posters that believe the owners are the villains??? Let me guess, card carrying union members. Those who feel they deserve as big a piece of the pie as those who, you know, actually own the company.

  62. cytofed says: Apr 25, 2011 7:56 PM

    @wetpaperbag2 Champinonship!!!

  63. pappageorgio says: Apr 25, 2011 7:56 PM

    The union lawyers wanted this injunction to block the lockout to force the owners to implement rules so that they could be taken to court for that……..this has nothing to do with players wanting to play or the fans.

    The outcome of this case was only to further the player’s continued litigation strategy.

    In the end the only thing that gets this thing done is to sit at the bargaining table and hammer out a deal…..which the union has shown they are unwilling to do. Smith and Kessler do not care for fans, football, or the greater majority of the players they represent (including the retired ones). They are showing that they would much rather burn down the league than negotiate.

    If the players are given everything they want then we will be right back here in a couple of years……if they aren’t and continue winning these cases that exploit our legal system, rather than embrace their legal obligation in collective bargaining, they will tear apart the fabric of what has made this a year-around game and fostered the very thing that has enabled it to grow so large.

  64. zn0rseman says: Apr 25, 2011 7:57 PM

    Did anyone not see this coming? An Obama appointee siding with a labor union… SHOCKING!

    Seriously, this ruling is bad for the fans because it basically sets the table for the players to continue to get paid while their lawyers work to dismantle the NFL as we know it. Someone earlier pointed out that from 87-93 there was no CBA… well, I was a fan back then and for all but a few teams…. those were NOT good football years. is this what the fans want? Three to four dominant teams competing for the Super Bowl with rest volleying for 5th place? I doubt it… unless you’re from Dallas, New York, Pittsburgh or Chicago.

    In short, this ruling screws the fans and the players both… most of us are just not wise enough to realize it.

  65. ar1888 says: Apr 25, 2011 7:59 PM

    Of course without a CBA this all means nothing.

  66. jakek2 says: Apr 25, 2011 8:00 PM

    course, the league has argued jurisdiction and nothing else. Boies knew this was an appellate case to begin with.
    —————-
    txchief – if that’s the case the owners are truly screwed. You can’t make arguments on appeal that you didn’t raise at the lower level. Lawyers are taught this in first year civ pro. Quit speaking on topics you know ZIP about. You’re wasting precious blog space.

  67. brambo67 says: Apr 25, 2011 8:00 PM

    dontcallmepete says: Apr 25, 2011 7:40 PM

    I think this furthers a mess of a situation and the ruining of a system that worked. Rules are in place to prevent…whatever. If I was an owner I’d sell now so I don’t have to shut the doors in ten years because my team sucks because I can’t afford to buy talent.
    ————————————-
    Then you would be an idiot. If you were losing money and you walked out of an agreement that YOU signed because of this and your players said “Show us where you’re losing money” and you wouldn’t then you’d be a liar.

    If a player says the word renegotiate everybody says that he shouldn’t have signed the deal. Owners do it and you guys blame the players.

    _____________________________

    Read some history buddy.
    Both sides agreed to the ability to terminate the last CBA, not just the owners.
    Upshaw and Tags both knew the players were getting the better part of the deal.

    And its not a case ot “losing” money. It is a case of diminshed returns.

    A number of teams have said they will open their books.
    The league has offered to show figures that the players don’t want because of a simple reason:

    The players want to make political capital by attempting to show that the owners are paying themselves large sums of money.

    Well, frankly Mr.Shankly, thats a bogus argument.
    These clubs are not PLCs they are mostly privately owned organisations and can pay what they wish, or the owners can take what they desire as part of their ownership.

    Without the clubs NO FRIGGING PLAYER would have a job that pays them very highly.

    AND LIKE I’VE SAID A MILLION TIMES, PLAYERS COME AND GO, BUT THE CLUBS ENDURE.

    I support the Raiders, I’ve seen hundreds of players in the 28 years I’ve supported them. I hope to see hundreds more. Al Davis has been the owner for decades. But, either way, I’ll always support the Raiders. I’ll not lose allegaince because certain players stop playing for them, or when Al Davis finally pops his clogs.

    We support the clubs, not the players.
    We don’t shift allegiances when players move.
    So, we support the owners, in effect, whilst ever they own our clubs.

  68. blantoncollier says: Apr 25, 2011 8:01 PM

    This ruling might be good for PFT since it will draw eyeballs to the site. But its certainly not good for the fans.

    The NFL will seek a stay and it should be granted. The ultimate goal of the NFLPA behind Smith and Kessler is destroy the NFL as it is governed now.

    It has always been their goal to make the draft illegal, eliminate work rules like free agency and rid the league of the salary cap.

    What all of you that side with the players fail to realize its the draft and free agent rules and the salary cap that have caused football to explode. These rules have made the term on any given Sunday meaningful. Smith/Kessler as this site has pointed out want to do away with the rules that made the game great.

    So we what will be the result. The shield will be cracked. The work rules eliminated, because the players will get an advantage and we will get the economics of baseball. The Cowboys, Giants, and Redskins will rule each year and small market teams will die. Oh forgive me, that sounds alot like baseball.

    If Judge Nelson would have cared about the fans, she would have shut up for a few more weeks and forced the sides to work on a new CBA. Something Smith/Kessler never wanted.

  69. rocketdogsports says: Apr 25, 2011 8:02 PM

    Because both sides are hardened into their positions, the lifting of the lockout could be seen as a face saving way of moving forward for both sides. The NFL has experienced this situation before and I believe it provides a cooling off period while the players, owners and fans all get what they want and need. The games will, likely, go on as scheduled, money will flow, and, eventually, an agreement will be reached. There will be 2 more regular season games, a committee will see the owners books (and be sworn to silence) and the structure (draft, free agency, etc) will remain. The frantic and the fanatic will be marginalized and cooler heads will prevail. This is an answer wrapped in an enigma and the best path forward given the egos and intrangicance of the parties.

  70. omniscient48 says: Apr 25, 2011 8:02 PM

    I just have a few comments:

    1. I did not think the “fans” were a party to this lawsuit.

    2. I think this judge may vicariously enjoy the placement of hands under the center.

  71. morr24 says: Apr 25, 2011 8:03 PM

    I keep posting things on here that never appear on the site…………this probably will not appear either.

  72. stixzidinia says: Apr 25, 2011 8:05 PM

    @ scytheria

    Your season ticket money would have been fully refunded in the event of a lost season………as the league has stated in the record. If your above post is indicative of your best argument then it’s pretty obvious why you’re not practicing anymore. There is no argument against common sense. Pro football is an expendable entertainment product. Nothing more. And all the fancy legal jargon in the world can’t change that simple fact.

  73. jakek2 says: Apr 25, 2011 8:05 PM

    Did anyone not see this coming? An Obama appointee siding with a labor union… SHOCKING
    ______________
    znorseman – you’re a typical blind republicrite. If you took two seconds to read the entries, you’d see that Nelson made a CONSERVATIVE ruling. She did not expand Norris-LaGuardia. Isn’t that what you people are always harping on??? Less government??? Well you got it this time so what are you crying for??? HAHAHAHAHA

  74. condeclar says: Apr 25, 2011 8:06 PM

    This is just another example of the state of complete disaster that this country exists in.

    We are supposed to be a country of “Laws” and not a country of whim and desire.

    The fact that a Judge believes she can use the “Fan” as a reason to make her decision should get her impeached!

    She is a judge and she should be basing her decision on the laws that our legislature created. Not her person feelings or some vague notion of “Fan Interest”.

    I’m not sure what is more troublesome… the fact that a judge believes she can use “Fan Interest” as a reason for a decision or that it seems like most people drink the decision like kool-aid.

    I guess I shouldn’t be surprised since we have people referring to this country as a democracy when, in fact, we are not a democracy.

    The bottom line is…. Judges should be required to only make decisions based upon the law.

    If not, then we have no laws and not system of government.

    We are just ruled by whim and personal opinion.

    Let me tell you… No one wants that!

  75. hobartbaker says: Apr 25, 2011 8:10 PM

    Judge Nelson sticks it to the fans. Typo in the headline.

  76. dryheaveone says: Apr 25, 2011 8:10 PM

    well, after reading these posts one thing is CRYSTAL CLEAR. Alot of you people have no idea what the hell you’re talking about!

  77. morr24 says: Apr 25, 2011 8:11 PM

    What a joke of a ruling and a more idiotic title to a blog entry. This is the opposite of sticking up for the fans. This is a TERRIBLE ruling for fans who can look betyond some short-term gratification. The long-term interests of footbal just took a big hit. Once again a politically motivated judge sitting in Minnesota makes a ruling in favor of the union…..forgivr mr players association…..what a crock.

    I question the ability of this judge to even to issue an injunction (even if one assumes irreperable harm and I do not conced this point). If there is no union then how can she issue an injunction. The affect of this charade is to render such CBA absurd. All a union need do is decertify then run to court and then recertify…….wait a minute we have seen this saga before. Did the union not decertify and then recertify before. This judge allows the union to have it both ways.

    You should all be very afraid of such power and intellectual dishonesty wresting in one individual. Overrule this nonsense ASAP.

  78. airraid77 says: Apr 25, 2011 8:12 PM

    anybody who has their head out of their rear end knows this is not good for the fans. Flo it is hard to imagine how anybody takes you seriously until one considers we elected a communist for president.

  79. airraid77 says: Apr 25, 2011 8:13 PM

    let me know when the players find out that they are destroyed their own golden goose.

  80. patpatriotagain says: Apr 25, 2011 8:20 PM

    overruled. book it.

  81. moochzilla says: Apr 25, 2011 8:20 PM

    This is what I said weeks ago…When someone is drooling to get you into court, it is because they know they can win. When a LAWYER is drooling to get you into court, you better come to terms. Fast.

    This is what happens when you make the mail boy the commissioner so that you and the fellow owners can pull his puppet strings. Goodell is an empty suit, he’s led the lead to disrepute, and the owners to embarrassment.

    What the owners needed was a wartime consigliere to tell them the truth…

    …the players held more of the cards, so back off demanding they surrender cash for nothing in return.

    …be honest about what you need off the top, instead of a Doctor Evil like demand for $1B dollars, with no backup or rationale as to why that exact sum was needed.

    …an unfortunate rash of bad PR, inclusive of former players dying of brain injuries, made this a particularly bad year to demand money from the NFLPA.

    Instead they had Fredo.

  82. moochzilla says: Apr 25, 2011 8:23 PM

    “Someone earlier pointed out that from 87-93 there was no CBA… well, I was a fan back then and for all but a few teams…. those were NOT good football years. ”

    Watch the Eagles-Giants contests from that era, the best football games I ever saw played.

  83. moochzilla says: Apr 25, 2011 8:25 PM

    “An Obama appointee siding with a labor union… SHOCKING!”

    Yeah, almost as shocking as the Reagan appointee siding with the union at the start of the lockout.

    When you’re right…you’re right. Because the law is the law, my man.

    But don’t let facts get in the way of your professional victimhood / tinfoil cone-hat paranoia.

  84. eagleswin says: Apr 25, 2011 8:27 PM

    Nelson did not do it for the fans.

    I doubt the league will honor her ruling, at least immediately.

  85. dan39564 says: Apr 25, 2011 8:28 PM

    It’s a B. S. Decision!

  86. pakasprz says: Apr 25, 2011 8:31 PM

    I myself love football and want it to resume more than anything, but Buffalonians can attest to the fact that if the NFL doesn’t get its finances together there won’t be a NFL.

    Here in Buffalo we almost lost our hockey team due to the fact that John and Tim Rigas used Adelphia and possibly the Buffalo Sabres as a personal piggy bank. Just payroll alone is triple the amount of the NHL. Also, multiple teams, including the Packers, are dangerously close to losing money consistently.

    If teams consistently lose money they will ask for relief from the government. The Bills already get $3 mil a year from Erie County for maintenance of Ralph Wilson Stadium. Other teams will follow suit in addition to raising prices.

    So, if the players get their way it means higher prices and more taxes for us. As much as I love football, I think I can live without football for a year.

  87. whatswiththehate says: Apr 25, 2011 8:31 PM

    stixzidinia says:
    Apr 25, 2011 7:28 PM
    Oh god there is no “impact” on the fans. The NFL is an entertainment product, just like American Idol. If the NFL ceased to exist the fans would forget about it and simply move on to something else. Stop being so dramatic.
    —————————-
    Oh no, you didn’t compare the holier-than-thou DIVA of the sports world to American Idol, an entertainment show.. Cam Newton got blasted for recognizing this sport for what it is…

    Also, Mike stop pretending you sports folks give a damn about us fans. All you care about is the money those athletes make and trying to figure a way to get your own grubby hands on some of it.

  88. rajbais says: Apr 25, 2011 8:33 PM

    Yeaaaaaaaah!!

    Finally, a woman who knows something about sports!!!!!

  89. crycal says: Apr 25, 2011 8:34 PM

    dontcallmepete says:
    Apr 25, 2011 7:40 PM

    “If a player says the word renegotiate everybody says that he shouldn’t have signed the deal. Owners do it and you guys blame the players.”

    Hey Pete, you are kind of a jackass. The owners didn’t step out in the middle of the deal. They simply didn’t renew the contract that expired. The only ones that “walked” away……..THE PLAYERS…FROM A PRETTY GOOD OFFER TO NEGOTIATE FROM!

  90. dkrause71 says: Apr 25, 2011 8:37 PM

    Then you would be an idiot. If you were losing money and you walked out of an agreement that YOU signed because of this and your players said “Show us where you’re losing money” and you wouldn’t then you’d be a liar.

    If a player says the word renegotiate everybody says that he shouldn’t have signed the deal. Owners do it and you guys blame the players.

    ———————————————–
    You actually are the idiot. The owners used a clause in the contract to opt out. People really need to stop acting like the owners walked out on the agreement. Part of the agreement was this option.

    The owners said they were losing profit margin. if the owners said they were losing money and asked for financial concessions the union can legally ask and get the books open to show this.

  91. realfootballfan says: Apr 25, 2011 8:37 PM

    Like I said when the owners moved a country mile at the last minute in order to try to pull the jedi mind trick on the public and pressure the players into accepting a worse deal, the owners know that going to court will only result in them losing. If you have the legal hammer, you don’t budge on your position if you have such strong convictions on how it should go.

    What the owners (well, the dumb new school ones anyway) have hoped all along is that they could impose this lockout and break the weaker moronic players who don’t have any income source to go with their lifestyle, thus forcing an owner slanted deal once those players grew discontent.

    However, predictably, Judge Nelson has shot that notion down, the owners have egg on their faces, and in addition, now they’ve unnecessarily opened up a whole other can of worms like the legality of league interest/cash cows like the draft, free agency, salary cap, etc.

    Now, it’s a mess when you could have avoided this, and the competitive balance, in what ever form the new CBA takes on (which will probably be even more heavily slanted toward the players), will probably be wrecked.

    Thanks, new owners like Steven Ross, Jerry Jones, and Jerry Richardson….thanks alot.

  92. 1phd says: Apr 25, 2011 8:41 PM

    And will anyone not see it coming when the dumb ass Republican appointed stuffed shirt appeals judges rule in favor of the fat ass owners and all their money? I’m just sayin.

  93. ubummer says: Apr 25, 2011 8:41 PM

    The golden goose isn’t dead, but her head is on the block and the axe is raised.

    This decision is a win for the fans IN THE SHORT TERM. Long term, it’s horrible for most fans.

    If things continue in this fashion, in a couple of years it will be the end of football as we know it. Great for big market teams, disaster for small market teams.

    For example, the Pittsburgh Steelers will perform just like the Pittsburgh Pirates. At least it will for whatever fans stick around to watch it, which doesn’t include me.

  94. moochzilla says: Apr 25, 2011 8:56 PM

    “So, if the players get their way it means higher prices and more taxes for us. As much as I love football, I think I can live without football for a year.”

    And if player salaries come down, you’ll pay lower taxes and lower prices.

    Are you really that clueless?

  95. veraky says: Apr 25, 2011 9:01 PM

    Sticking up for the fans??? What a joke! If she was really sticking up for the fans she would have forced both sides to have serious negotiations until a new CBA could be reached. This is not a win for the fans and this process will continue to drag out.

  96. dontcallmepete says: Apr 25, 2011 9:06 PM

    Read some history buddy.
    Both sides agreed to the ability to terminate the last CBA, not just the owners.
    Upshaw and Tags both knew the players were getting the better part of the deal.

    And its not a case ot “losing” money. It is a case of diminshed returns.
    ——————————————
    Actually I have:

    United States Court of Appeals, Eighth Circuit. – 543 F.2d 606 (and)

    White v. NFL, 836 F. Supp. 1458, 1482 (D. Minn. 1993

    which is why I wrote weeks ago here that the owners would lose today and I also read this

    Radovich vs. NFL 352 U.S. 445

    See history in certain circles is known as precedent. It’s why any appeal is doomed. And it’s why comprehension is part of reading. Obviously both sides agreed to the ability to terminate the last CBA, not just the owners because otherwise they’d have been in violation. I submit that both sides having agreed to the ability to terminate to agreement doesn’t change my central point.

  97. dontcallmepete says: Apr 25, 2011 9:11 PM

    Hey Pete, you are kind of a jackass. The owners didn’t step out in the middle of the deal. They simply didn’t renew the contract that expired. The only ones that “walked” away……..THE PLAYERS…FROM A PRETTY GOOD OFFER TO NEGOTIATE FROM!
    ——————————————-
    The owners opted out of the agreement. If you don’t know that you shouldn’t be posting.

  98. moochzilla says: Apr 25, 2011 9:12 PM

    They simply didn’t renew the contract that expired. The only ones that “walked” away……..THE PLAYERS…FROM A PRETTY GOOD OFFER TO NEGOTIATE FROM!

    Really, what good deal was that?

    The owners asked for $1 billion off the top, adding to the $1B they already take. And the players get nothing in return.

    And, rather than show their books, they lower their asking price to $500M.

    So, let me get this straight. Owners demand $1B or they say the league will implode.

    Then they refuse to offer one shred of evidence that the league will implode, by opening their books to their legal business partners (NLFPA).

    After the players stop laughing, they bring down the number to $500M. Still no evidence, and contradicting their earlier stance that they needed $1B or it was doomsday (apparently that was a lie).

    This is your idea of negotiating? I am guessing you don’t do deals, own a business that involves profit-sharing (as the NFL does), or handle contracts.

    Really, I hope you don’t.

  99. dontcallmepete says: Apr 25, 2011 9:20 PM

    If things continue in this fashion, in a couple of years it will be the end of football as we know it. Great for big market teams, disaster for small market teams.
    ————————————-
    And there’s not the slightest possibility that could be EXACTLY what some owners want is there? This is what Jerry Jones said in Minnesota when talking about the stadium situation there.

    “Right now, we are subsidizing this market,” Jones said. “It’s unthinkable to think that the market you’ve got here, with 3.5 million people, and have teams like Kansas City and Green Bay subsidizing this market. That will stop. That’s going to stop. That’s called revenue sharing. That’s on its way out.”

  100. jimr10 says: Apr 25, 2011 9:23 PM

    Looks like a lot of players got on here today.

  101. sneaky1632 says: Apr 25, 2011 9:45 PM

    Sooo by turning the NFL into MLB the judge did us a favor? Get ready for sky high ticket prices to pay for all those players seeing $$. I’m an employee and even I know that the employee/employer relationship exists for a reason. Anytime the employee has more power than the employer you get the coruption you see in MLB. Steroid scandals, the teams with the most money getting all the best players, is that what you all want??

  102. Deb says: Apr 25, 2011 9:50 PM

    The judge’s injunction doesn’t have to end football as we know it. Instead of whining to the appellate court, the owners can call the players and work out a new CBA.

    YOU GO, GIRL!!!!!!

  103. upperdecker19 says: Apr 25, 2011 9:59 PM

    The judge “digs” football.

  104. rajbais says: Apr 25, 2011 10:00 PM

    JUDGE … I LOVE YOU!!!!!!!!!!!!!

  105. bengalsfan513 says: Apr 25, 2011 10:18 PM

    Judge Nelson for president

  106. moochzilla says: Apr 25, 2011 10:23 PM

    dontcallmepete, those were excellent posts.

    What you have to realize is that many are not bothering to learn about the labor agreement, or the relationship between the players and owners, or how the CBA relates to the anti-trust exemption.

    Most will just say “me hate union” and assume its a strike by players wanting more cash. Instead of a lockout where the owners want to take away money from the players.

    That ends now that the legal decision was made. The veil has been lifted, it is now clear that this is an owner-led lockout. Only the willfully ignorant, and there are many, will continue to blame the players.

  107. moochzilla says: Apr 25, 2011 10:24 PM

    Sneaky, if the owners win you’ll have MLB. If the players win then the NFL stays as it is.

    How can you post with zero knowledge of what is happening?

    The players are not asking for one cent more. The owners want another $1B at a time when the sport is more popular than ever.

  108. fargovikesfan says: Apr 25, 2011 10:25 PM

    well, i hope that the average players are going to be happy making salaries closer to what people make at real jobs while the few “elite” players make all the money. No draft, no free agency, no minimum salaries, the Peyton Manning and Tom Brady’s of the world will make obscene salaries while the long snappers, kickers, and special teams players will be making $50,000 a year. There goes your guaranteed minimum salaries.
    they just F’d up the best business model in professional sports, I hope the non-union union is happy.

  109. bobothegreatest says: Apr 25, 2011 10:33 PM

    If the Union or Social club or whatever they call themselves had gone on strike, would the Courts have ordered them back??

    Doesnt make any sense…

    What we have here is the evolution of our society.

    Capitalism is a dying breed.

    Socialism is our future.

    Bobo

  110. thefiesty1 says: Apr 25, 2011 10:50 PM

    No she didn’t! She just drug this crap out forever. How could anyone in their right mind take the players side? The players will just continue to reject any offer the owners make now that liberal judge made an asinine decision. I don’t know why I care, it should be expected when the government gets involved.

  111. huejackson says: Apr 25, 2011 10:59 PM

    why do people say/pretend they are not goin to watch the draft, or care abouuut the draft?
    Either way theres goin to be football and the player ur fav team picks is goin to play?
    So why would someone say they are not excited about it because of the “lockout”
    dumb people

  112. Deb says: Apr 25, 2011 11:08 PM

    @bobothegreatest …

    My brother used to play Little League with a kid named Bobo who picked his nose all the time. Is that you, Bobo?

    No … on second thought … even at eight that Bobo was smart enough to understand the difference between a strike and a lockout! The OWNERS are the ones who opted out of the last agreement and the OWNERS are the ones demanding an additional BILLION DOLLARS from the revenue pie and the OWNERS are the ones who shut down the league and locked out the players. The players have not gone on strike.

    You can return to Rupert TV now. :roll:

  113. palinforpresidentofnorthkorea says: Apr 25, 2011 11:11 PM

    No Deb, this means nothing. By this time tomorrow evening you’ll see. Watch and learn Deb. Watch and learn.

    ~~~~~~
    Deb says: Apr 25, 2011 9:50 PM

    The judge’s injunction doesn’t have to end football as we know it. Instead of whining to the appellate court, the owners can call the players and work out a new CBA.

    YOU GO, GIRL!!!!!!

  114. Deb says: Apr 25, 2011 11:31 PM

    @palin …

    Honey, the operative phrase was doesn’t have to end football as we know it. I’m well aware that we have now entered No Rules Football. That would be because the owners chose to opt out of the CBA and play a lil hardball. You reap as you sow. Now they can let this continue indefinitely and this will turn into something I don’t want anymore than you do. Or they can try to cut a deal before it’s too late.

  115. gbfanforever says: Apr 25, 2011 11:37 PM

    What’s with the thumbs down for pro decision comments? Do those people hate football or something? Go to another blog

  116. discosucs2005 says: Apr 25, 2011 11:39 PM

    Why are people signing their names? We can see your use name every time you post.

    People who are freaking out that this is the death of capitalism are remarkably adept at ignoring facts and over dramatizing the tiniest of things. The judge mentions the fans one time in her 89 page ruling, and if you read that line, you would know that the fans are anything but the main reason she ruled in favor of the players. She ruled in favor of the players because the NFL isn’t like a normal business, and like other pro sport leagues, actually does several things that, when examined by a judge, might be deemed illegal (probably too strong of a word, but you get my point).

  117. SirLoin says: Apr 25, 2011 11:40 PM

    This judge throws the general public a rotten bone and you all bite at it hard enough to break your teeth. You may not feel it now but we ALL will in 2-3 years (if not sooner) This ruling will change the NFL, and personally I dont think it will be for the better.

    Judge Nelson should have ruled in the best interest of the league, not the fans. That was the real issue to begin with, remember?

    This does not mean that ticket prices will be lower, or concessions will be cheaper. So im still waiting to see how this really benefits the fans, as judge Nelson claims in pages 87-89 in said written ruling?

    If anything I think this only helps the players agents, and lawyers to raise salary and promote hold outs.

  118. narutofan10 says: Apr 25, 2011 11:41 PM

    why are there so many thumbs down on a very big step towards a nfl 2011 season LMAO you people make me sick…and thank you judge for showing us you care

  119. commentcentral says: Apr 25, 2011 11:47 PM

    So, if it were the players on strike she would have ruled that they return to work? . . . And she would have done this just for the fans.
    Doubt it.
    This “doing it for the fans” is just total PR.

  120. puntpasskick says: Apr 26, 2011 12:31 AM

    I’ve always thought we’ll have football this year. I’m just worried about DeMaurice Smith, being the head of the “trade association” and a fellow lawyer, listening to Kessler in the long term for this lawsuit.

    Since the NFL will probably never want to deal with any more federal court/decertification/antitrust nonsense after this, they’ll probably stand firm on eliminating any such course of action in the next and any future CBA’s.

    Therefore, Kessler might try and convince Smith that “this is our chance to narrow the gap between the NFL and MLB” by going all the way with this lawsuit, and potentially everything listed in the filing.

    Not a great thought for the fans.

  121. macjacmccoy says: Apr 26, 2011 1:27 AM

    Finally someone has recognized who really matters in this case. us.

  122. ursushorribilis says: Apr 26, 2011 2:41 AM

    Let’s see:
    What did you expect from a liberal judge? This is not about the merit of the case, this is about a subconscious left wing bias that is manifest in the decision. Any good trial lawyer KNOWS most cases are won when one has the favorable judge deciding.

    Left-wing judge (Obamamama) plays the populist card (it is all about the fans) to manipulate public opinion and stick it to the rich, white owners while hiding her pro-union, left-wing agenda.

    Overpaid Diva players rejoice. MeMaurice is orgasmic. Never mind this is the beginning of the League’s death spiral. No draft. No competitive League. The rich (ironically) just get richer. Big market teams afford the big money diva players, Buffalo, Cleveland, etc. go under while Dallas, Redskins, New England thrive….

    Short sighted people can’t see the forest for the trees!
    Let’s hope less biased judges in the 8th Circuit, derail this expected “decision.”

  123. tatum064 says: Apr 26, 2011 3:19 AM

    this ruling is bad for the fans because it basically sets the table for the players to continue to get paid while their lawyers work to dismantle the NFL as we know it. Someone earlier pointed out that from 87-93 there was no CBA… well, I was a fan back then and for all but a few teams…. those were NOT good football years
    “””””””””””””””””””””””””””””””””””””””””””””
    basically, you’d have big market teams still
    over-spending for free agents, and football unlike baseball doesnt really matter where free agents signed..there were many of the “best teams money could buy” upset at anytime.

    Was Tom Brady in a big market? Was Drew Brees? The key is the organizational decision-making, coaching, etc. Teams will pay for short-term success but many big market teams will still need o^lines, QB’s, etc and that has been in decline…

    in fact, the draft has been in steady decline since 2004 (perhaps more junior’s and less developed talent jumping the gun).

    It doesnt matter….I think the competition committee at some point would address balance draft differentials by scheduling and larger roster pools.

  124. fflnick says: Apr 26, 2011 4:16 AM

    Actually by siding with the players, she hurts fans long term.
    Meaning if player costs go up, those prices are passed along to the ticket buying fan.
    People who call the owners greedy stating fans need cheaper ticket prices and at the same time root for the players to win the case, are contradictory statements.

    ANY ADDITIONAL PLAYER COSTS ARE PASSED ALONG TO THE FAN IN THE FORM OF HIGHER PRICES.

  125. jimr10 says: Apr 26, 2011 8:07 AM

    Regardless of the outcome on appeal, smith and kessler intend to destroy the NFL as we know it. It seems a shame most of the pro-ruling people do not realize that was the goal of the union to begin with. There was never any intention to negotiate a new CBA. I hope I see all you pro-ruling posters in a few months or a few years on here whining that the NFL is no longer the sport we all loved so much.

  126. airraid77 says: Apr 26, 2011 8:53 AM

    whats the obama line? out of chaos, comes great opportunity. All the owners have to do is write rules that make it impossible for the players to keep up their current lifestyles.
    50 million dollar salary cap. basically makes everybody a free agent and out of work. works for me. and just refuse to negotiate a new deal.

  127. ubummer says: Apr 26, 2011 9:15 AM

    dontcallmepete says:
    Apr 25, 2011 9:20 PM

    And there’s not the slightest possibility that could be EXACTLY what some owners want is there?
    —————————————

    Some owners. The owners are not a monolith. One of the reasons they opted out of the CBA was because they couldn’t agree on revenue sharing. So let’s be clear on at least one thing.

    Revenue sharing is what makes the NFL great. The lack of revenue sharing is what makes MLB suck except for a few prestige teams.

    Revenue sharing is what carries most teams as they go through their inevitable down times, and it allows them the opportunity to rebuild. Without revenue sharing, it is too easy for a team to go into a death spiral.

    The owners are more and more becoming like the “new breed CEO” that is a curse on the nation as a whole. Their credo is to get what you can for yourself right now and get out, and who cares about the future of the business when I’m out of here.

    So the point is that every ruling that goes against the owners as a whole drives the wedge deeper between the owners in favor of revenue sharing and the Jerry Jones faction. If that split happens, it is goodbye to the NFL as we know it, and the way things are going it will be even worse than the MLB business model which is horrible enough.

  128. paulieorkid says: Apr 26, 2011 10:20 AM

    Though seemingly well-intentioned, Judge Nelson’s “sticking up for the fans” may be misguided. Neville Chamberlan-esque.

    If when the smoke clears, we end up with a League where high projection rookies and worse, the proven vet players simply are allowed to go to the highest bidder —- this “just looking out for the fans” or “sticking up for the fans” will have basically put the greatest professional sport in history in our collective rear view mirror.

  129. Deb says: Apr 26, 2011 11:25 AM

    Blah blah blah Obama blah blah blah Liberal blah blah blah Socialism blah blah blah Apocalypse blah blah blah

    Sit down over a cup of tea and come up with a new act, people. This one has grown tiresome.

  130. pigeonpea says: Apr 29, 2011 9:51 AM

    discosucs2005 says:
    However, saying there is “no” impact is too far. We are all NFL fans here (I’m assuming), and, while no one will die if the NFL stopped existing, it would suck.

    This is true. However, it would suck just as bad to see the players get their way and eliminate the draft, salary cap and everything else that makes the sport enjoyable to watch. Up until now, every team has as much chance to win as any other. Most games were fairly close and that keeps the excitement level high. Get rid of the cap and draft, and suddenly you’ll have blowout after blowout and the small market teams will serve only as farm teams for the top half of the league. IMO, that would have a much greater and long-lasting impact than losing the 2011 season. If the league becomes predictable I don’t imagine a lot of people will bother watching it anymore (myself included).

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