News: MLS went out of business in November 2001.

Discussion in 'MLS: News & Analysis' started by ElJefe, Apr 11, 2016.

  1. ElJefe

    ElJefe Moderator
    Staff Member

    Feb 16, 1999
    Colorful Colorado
    Club:
    FC Dallas
    Nat'l Team:
    United States
    This according to FCD owner Dan Hunt, who was interviewed by Steve Davis for the Soccer Today program on ESPN Dallas 103.3. The segment with Hunt starts about 15 minutes in.

    http://soccer-today.org/podcasts/#/april-10/
     
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  2. tab5g

    tab5g Member+

    May 17, 2002
    Did this have something to do with starting up SUM and needing to make that a "separate" business?

    Or was it possibly a result of contracting Tampa Bay and Miami and getting rid of Horowitz?

    With such a long off-season, it probably just makes a sense to go out of business before the winter and just reopen shop at some point before the next season. Surprised it didn't happen more often in those early years.
     
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  3. profiled

    profiled Moderator
    Staff Member

    Feb 7, 2000
    slightly north of a mile high
    Club:
    Los Angeles Galaxy
    Reaction to San Jose winning MLS Cup.
     
  4. ElJefe

    ElJefe Moderator
    Staff Member

    Feb 16, 1999
    Colorful Colorado
    Club:
    FC Dallas
    Nat'l Team:
    United States
    Hint: My thread title might've been somewhat sensationalistic.
     
  5. Len

    Len Member+

    Club: Dallas Tornado
    Jan 18, 1999
    Everywhere and Nowhere.....I'm the wind, baby.
    People that aren't like you and me...

    Around the 16:30 minute mark: Dan Hunt, "I'll never forget the day dad came home and said, 'Well I'm just going to build a soccer stadium...'"

    $igh.
     
  6. JasonMa

    JasonMa Member+

    Mar 20, 2000
    Arvada, CO
    Club:
    Colorado Rapids
    Nat'l Team:
    United States
    Should have been "Did MLS go out of business in 2001?" then. ;)
     
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  7. profiled

    profiled Moderator
    Staff Member

    Feb 7, 2000
    slightly north of a mile high
    Club:
    Los Angeles Galaxy
    You'll never believe the shocking true story!
     
  8. Len

    Len Member+

    Club: Dallas Tornado
    Jan 18, 1999
    Everywhere and Nowhere.....I'm the wind, baby.
    Next, on Sally Jessy Raphael.
     
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  9. Yoshou

    Yoshou Moderator
    Staff Member

    May 12, 2009
    Seattle
    Club:
    Seattle Sounders
    Nat'l Team:
    United States
    #9 Yoshou, Apr 11, 2016
    Last edited: Apr 17, 2016
    I believe the headline would be:

    "MLS went out of business in 2001!!! You won't believe what happens when it turns around!!!"

    The first page would have about 50 ads, include a random picture of the Chivas cheerleaders, and:

    In an interview with Steve Davis, FC Dallas owner Dan Hunt said on his first day working in the family business, in November 2001, his dad, the legendary Lamar Hunt, got a phone call...

    The second page would have 51 ads, that stock photo of the hot female lawyer chewing on the tip of a pen, and:

    The phone call was from the league offices. They had been talking to the other owners of the league, the league's primary sponsors, and the league's accounting and legal department

    The third page would "only" have 49 ads, a picture of Ronaldo laying on a beach in a speedo, and:

    They had decided to fold the league and were already in the process of writing up the paperwork to file for bankruptcy and liquidate the league's few remaining assets. But you won't believe what happened next!!

    The fourth page would have so many ads that you would likely miss the actual text and after several minutes of hunting you'd see a picture of a female Houston fan with a nice rack and a low cut Dynamo jersey that is several sizes too small and:

    Lamar Hunt called up the rest of the owners and changed their minds.
     
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  10. GVPATS77

    GVPATS77 Member+

    Aug 18, 2008
    Fullerton, CA
    Thanks for the recap. I'm at work and couldn't listen to the podcast.
     
  11. ThreeApples

    ThreeApples Member+

    Jul 28, 1999
    Smurf Village
    Club:
    San Jose Earthquakes
    Nat'l Team:
    United States
    You'll Never Believe This One Weird Trick That Saved A Floundering Soccer League
     
  12. Sachsen

    Sachsen Member+

    Aug 8, 2003
    Broken Arrow, Okla.
    Club:
    Sporting Kansas City
    Nat'l Team:
    United States
    Three Things You Should Never Eat When Trying To Save American Soccer... Again!!!
     
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  13. profiled

    profiled Moderator
    Staff Member

    Feb 7, 2000
    slightly north of a mile high
    Club:
    Los Angeles Galaxy
    Have a listen to how close we were to an open, just, fair and heaven blessed system of promotion and relegation, if only Lamar Hunt would have been more of a cheapskate!
     
  14. Sachsen

    Sachsen Member+

    Aug 8, 2003
    Broken Arrow, Okla.
    Club:
    Sporting Kansas City
    Nat'l Team:
    United States
    Don't give Ted any ideas, he and his disciples will be desecrating Lamar's grave next thing and performing arcane rituals to exorcise the demons.
     
  15. Etienne_72772

    Etienne_72772 Member+

    Oct 14, 1999
    "MLS Went Out of Business in 2001, Because of Course it Did!"
     
  16. GalaxyKoa

    GalaxyKoa Member+

    Jul 18, 2007
    North County
    Club:
    Los Angeles
    Nat'l Team:
    United States
    Things like this this are why I can never be sure I'm not living in the matrix and information about the real world is slowly leaking in.
     
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  17. Mateofelipe

    Mateofelipe Member+

    Mar 10, 2001
    Spokane, WA
    Club:
    Seattle Sounders
    Nat'l Team:
    United States
    My favorite are the ones that say something like "Child Stars You Didn't Know Died Young," and it's got a picture of the alive and well Jonathan Taylor Thomas.
     
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  18. Honore de Ballsac

    Oct 28, 2005
    France.
    Link please.
     
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  19. xbhaskarx

    xbhaskarx Member+

    San Jose Earthquakes
    United States
    Feb 13, 2010
    NorCal
    Club:
    San Jose Earthquakes
    Nat'l Team:
    United States
    20 Sports Leagues that Folded (slideshow)
     
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  20. Sounders78

    Sounders78 Member+

    Apr 20, 2009
    Olympia
    Club:
    Seattle Sounders
    Nat'l Team:
    France
    And I thought I was cynical!
     
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  21. Bill Archer

    Bill Archer BigSoccer Supporter

    Mar 19, 2002
    Washington, NC
    Club:
    Columbus Crew
    Nat'l Team:
    United States
    Fox Sports used a very similar headline:

    The league was, in theory, dead. They gave up and were ready to close up shop. MLS had failed. The investors were out and there would no longer be a top flight professional soccer league in the United States.

    For at least a few hours, MLS essentially ceased to exist.

    "We were having a league call in November and the league folded," Hunt said. "It went out of business, they were preparing the documents and that was it."

    What or who saved the league? Lamar Hunt.

    The man who owned two teams at the time almost single-handedly brought MLS back from the dead in 2001. He called up the league's owners and within 48 hours brought everyone back on board. They were committed to the league again and were no longer going to cease operations.


    http://www.foxsports.com/soccer/inside-mls/mls-folded-in-2001-and-we-had-no-idea-041116

    Now in fact, if Dan Hunt, who is something like the family idiot, is correct here, all he's really saying is that someone was preparing "the paperwork" to go out of business.

    Which isn't exactly the same thing as "MLS went out of business".

    In fact, his story does have a serious hole:

    He says that "two teams folded" and then the owners decided to bail.

    But that doesn't make sense. Teams couldn't"fold". Still can't. The league itself has to shutter them.

    What they apparently did was agree to close two teams as part of the restructuring.

    Makes for a good tale, and I believe there's an element of truth in Massah Lamar lobbying the other owners into committing the money for another two years - which was what we've always been told - and then seeing whether it was worth going forward.

    And frankly, I don't see Phil Anschutz making up his mind to walk away and then getting a phone call from Lamar Hunt and saying "Aw shit, fine, since you called, Lamar old buddy, here's another $100 million". That's really not how things work in the real world.

    Obviously some of the owners decided to walk away that day. And there was undoubtedly some question about whether it made sense to go on. We know that for a fact.

    (I do wish someone would point some of this out to the assholes in Portland and Seattle and some other places who think this league was a sure thing. 2002 was not that long ago. And, I'dpoint out, nobody in Seattle had the ********ing balls to put money on the line. They sat on the sidelines and waited for actual men with hangy-down-parts to get the league going for them.)
     
  22. Len

    Len Member+

    Club: Dallas Tornado
    Jan 18, 1999
    Everywhere and Nowhere.....I'm the wind, baby.
    And let's be honest here; it didn't make a whole lot of sense to go on. Fortunately they did. Because I don't know if we'd gotten another shot at serious D1 soccer anytime soon.
     
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  23. Bill Archer

    Bill Archer BigSoccer Supporter

    Mar 19, 2002
    Washington, NC
    Club:
    Columbus Crew
    Nat'l Team:
    United States
    No, you're right. It was a Sucker bet. I'm sure both mens accountants were freaking out.

    There was virtually no evidence that anything would ever change.

    It was simply an act of blind faith.
     
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  24. ElJefe

    ElJefe Moderator
    Staff Member

    Feb 16, 1999
    Colorful Colorado
    Club:
    FC Dallas
    Nat'l Team:
    United States
    My take is that it was more or less his first job out of college, and well, I can't imagine that he was getting the full story then, even about the family's business.

    So it's an amusing embellishment of a story of which he didn't know the entirety then.
     
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  25. RafaLarios

    RafaLarios Member+

    Oct 2, 2009
    Medellín
    Club:
    Atletico Nacional
    Nat'l Team:
    Colombia
    this would be news if the one making the calls to the other owners was Kraft instead of Hunt...

    THAT would be a perception changer.
     
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