Single Entity and its lifespan

Discussion in 'MLS: Commissioner - You be The Don' started by waltlantz, Aug 6, 2017.

  1. waltlantz

    waltlantz Member

    Jul 6, 2010
    #1 waltlantz, Aug 6, 2017
    Last edited: Aug 6, 2017
    I will get straight to the point.

    How much longer is the current league setup feasible?

    It is true that it was a shrewd and necessary move to start up the league in the wilderness of the 90s.

    That being said with cities nationwide keen on entering the league and the dizzying wealth and various owners behind the clubs today, how long can the league continue to cling to its old ways?

    Of course, I doubt that Garber is going to enact any drastic changes during his reign, but at least there could be some conversations, perhaps?

    I think that if the league is going for 28 (or more, like say 32) teams, it will have covered most corners of the nation, in large markets with wealthy ownership groups. Sponsorship and attendance will be high drivers of income, but TV income is paltry. I would say within about 10 or 15 years, there will be some tough choices and conversations that will need to be had because I do not see TV and Media revenue increasing as it stands now.

    Is it possible to have the league TRUELY set up like the NFL with individual franchises working independently while containing salary caps, revenue sharing and playoffs?
     
  2. JasonMa

    JasonMa Member+

    Mar 20, 2000
    Arvada, CO
    Club:
    Colorado Rapids
    Nat'l Team:
    United States
    Nothing in your post explains why you think single-entity should end.

    to anyone paying attention it should be obvious that the overall structure of the league (i.e. single-entity) was never intended only for the short term and the owners have no plans of changing it in any projectable future (say the next 20 years give or take, after that its hard to project out what the sporting landscape will look like with any reliability)
     
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  3. The Franchise

    The Franchise Member+

    Nov 13, 2014
    Bakersfield, CA
    Club:
    Real Salt Lake
    Nat'l Team:
    United States
    An important point is that this isn't Garber's decision, either. He has power and influence, but no authority. A change to league structure would probably require a supermajority vote by the owners, many of whom were initially attracted in part by single-entity. Stepping away from it would require a change to player contracts as well.
     
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  4. When Saturday Comes

    Apr 9, 2012
    Calgary
    Club:
    Toronto FC
    Nat'l Team:
    Canada
    Given how things have gone lately within the league (adidas deal, expansion etc) and outside (Neymar transfer fee) my guess is the owners are believing in Single Entity more and more.
     
  5. Baysider

    Baysider Member+

    Jul 16, 2004
    Santa Monica
    Club:
    Los Angeles Galaxy
    Well, what do you think the NFL does that single entity keeps MLS from doing?
     
  6. oknazevad

    oknazevad Member

    Oct 24, 2005
    Frankly with the way the other major pro leagues have changed over the years, between revenue sharing, national tv contracts, centralized licensing, and joint ownership of new media properties, they've become more single-entity like than ever before. Meanwhile MLS has loosened up somewhat. To the point where I really cannot think of any significant distinction between how MLS operates and how the "big 4" really operate anymore. There's been such a convergence that the term "single-entity" is pretty much just a meaningless buzzword in comparing operations to other major North American leagues.
     
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  7. EvanJ

    EvanJ Member+

    Manchester United
    United States
    Mar 30, 2004
    Nassau County, NY
    Club:
    Manchester United FC
    Nat'l Team:
    United States
    Here's a quote that I think would surprise fans of American leagues in other sports that are not single-entity. https://mlsplayers.org/resources/salary-guide says:

    "These figures include compensation from each player’s contract with MLS. They do not include any compensation from any contracts with individual teams or their affiliates."

    That's like reading that Actor X made a certain amount of money from the Motion Picture Association of America (MPAA) that excludes the money he was paid by Movie Studio Y for his popular movie.
     
  8. tannadiceterrors

    Feb 2, 2009
    Club:
    --other--
    Nat'l Team:
    --other--
    Single entity is no longer needed. Probably never was. There’s absolutely no reason these teams can’t be autonomous clubs under an association.

    It’s probably not going anywhere anytime soon. I’ve never heard Garber or anyone from the league say it’s a temporary thing.
     
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  9. SilentAssassin

    Apr 16, 2007
    St. Louis
    https://www.si.com/soccer/2013/08/05/clint-dempsey-seattle-sounders-mls

    The league paid part of the transfer fee for Dempsey, and I believe Bradley as well, although I haven't found a link for Bradley yet. Can you imagine that happening in a league that is not single entity, or do you mean that things have changed completely since 2013? If Ronaldo or Chicharito or Pulisic wanted to come to MLS, but the teams were a few million apart on the transfer fee, don't you think MLS would chip in today?
     
  10. Paul Berry

    Paul Berry Member+

    Notts County and NYCFC
    England
    Apr 18, 2015
    Nr Kingston NY
    Nat'l Team:
    United States
    I think without the single-entity the league would have to move from a salary budget to a salary cap.

    In the single-entity the league hands out allowances to each team, consisting of the salary budget and allocation money.

    In an open system the teams can pay what they like up too (and in some cases beyond) a salary cap.
     
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  11. El Naranja

    El Naranja Member+

    Sep 5, 2006
    Alief
    Club:
    Houston Dynamo
    Nat'l Team:
    United States
    If you think single entity was never needed you don't know much about soccer history in the US. There are many books, documentaries and movies on the topic, not to mention some fantastic online work, especially from fellow BSers. I recommend you do so scholarly work, then come back and explain how it wasn't needed with the requisite citations to back up your theory.
     
  12. mschofield

    mschofield Member+

    May 16, 2000
    Berlin
    Club:
    Union Berlin
    Nat'l Team:
    Germany
    Yes, though on the "can you imagine" bit, didn't Jordan's return to the NBA from baseball also see a league buy in? I have a memory of Jordan making the rather reasonable argument that the drop in tv ratings after his departure indicated the entire league owned him money (which, really, was hard to argue against).
    Your point is a good one, just wondering with my old brain whether there is a non-MLS example.
    As for dumping single entity, it looks like they've chosen to modify it instead. In the near term, it's hard to see it making much sense, esp as the value of buying in is crazy high and continues to climb.
     
  13. Paul Berry

    Paul Berry Member+

    Notts County and NYCFC
    England
    Apr 18, 2015
    Nr Kingston NY
    Nat'l Team:
    United States
    #13 Paul Berry, Jun 7, 2018
    Last edited: Jun 7, 2018
    ASL 1921 - 1933 failed
    ASL 1933 - 1983 failed
    NASL 1968 - 1984 failed
    NASL 2011 - 2017 on hiatus
    Several other leagues failed in the US and in Canada.
    MLS 1996 - would not have lasted post 2002 if it hadn't been for the single-entity.

    Without the single-entity today we would probably see irrational exuberance among the top half dozen teams, while the teams below them either overspend to keep up or settle for finishing near the bottom of the standings year-in, year-out. But that's just conjecture.

    And if anyone doesn't like the way MLS is run there's nothing to stop them creating they're own league, And if the likes of Rocco think it's too expensive they need to remember the financial hemorrhaging MLS went through in it's first decade.
     
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  14. tannadiceterrors

    Feb 2, 2009
    Club:
    --other--
    Nat'l Team:
    --other--
    You’re conflating single entity with salary caps.
     
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  15. adam tash

    adam tash Member+

    Jul 12, 2013
    single-entity gives owners more control over mls expenditures.

    give billionaires the option of more control or less control...they will take more 100% of the time.

    MLS could get rid of single entity and still control spending very closely though....you could still have a hard salary cap without single entity so that rich owners wouldnt outspend other owners by 5 or 10 times.....(like seatlle, tfc have been doing under current rules)
     
  16. Baysider

    Baysider Member+

    Jul 16, 2004
    Santa Monica
    Club:
    Los Angeles Galaxy
    This is certainly right, after all, the NFL is quite able to control spending and it's not single entity. But if MLS sets the rules to limit spending and who the teams can sign, how much does it matter if it's single entity or not?

    When people complain about single entity (such as I assume the OP) they are really complaining about something else. And that something doesn't have to change even if they give up single entity (which they never would in any case - what a legal hassle).
     
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  17. adam tash

    adam tash Member+

    Jul 12, 2013
    there are many reasons aside from the salary cap/budget rules to not want single entity...i wouldnt equate the two at all.

    although i get what you are saying....if MLS just said 20 million hard cap per team and teams can spend however they want....then would it matter if MLS was single-entity or not?

    personally i just dont want the entire direction and control of soccer in the usa run by this cabal that has no idea what they are doing i.e. getting the usmnt any closer to winning a world cup.

    i think there are all kinds of business decisions that are made within the context of single-entity that are not beneficial to the sport in this country and that eliminating single entity could only help in that sense.

    i want teams to be in total control of their own destiny b/c i think the level of accountability will sky-rocket and ultimately produce much better results and players.
     
  18. JasonMa

    JasonMa Member+

    Mar 20, 2000
    Arvada, CO
    Club:
    Colorado Rapids
    Nat'l Team:
    United States
    Of course the closest the USMNT has gotten to winning a World Cup since 1930 was in 2002 using a roster of current and forme MLS players (I think only 3 players on that roster had spent no time in MLS). And 2018 was the first World Cup the U.S. missed since the founding of MLS after only qualifying once int he prior 40 years.

    But yeah, they have no idea what they're doing and they;re not getting the U.S. any closer to winning a World Cup. SMH.
     
  19. mschofield

    mschofield Member+

    May 16, 2000
    Berlin
    Club:
    Union Berlin
    Nat'l Team:
    Germany
    Name one business decision that MLS is now making because it is single entity that would have to change if they changed to a traditional owner system.
    The only place it makes any difference from a fan perspective is in the rules governing player acquisition, and this year they've made such enormous strides in creating workarounds that even that really doens't make any difference anymore.
    I take it you believe MLS should emulate the Trinidad and Tobago Pro League? Oh, wait, sorry, single entity in that the league is owned by the club owners.
    Maybe the Liga de Panama? Oh, wait, their WCup roster had twice as many MLS players as domestic. Huh, Costa Rica's nats also rely on MLS as much as most teams, though they do feature six domestic league players and only four from MLS.
    The USMNT had, by a wide margin, the necessary talent to qualify for this World Cup. Christ, you could have formed a side from SKC that would have destroyed the T&T youth team that beat the US. That side had zero big time players on it. Those players would be thrilled to get MLS contracts. It would be a huge step up.
    The issue wasn't talent. The issue was what the US setup failed to do with that talent, which was create anything beyond a hot mess.
     
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  20. El Naranja

    El Naranja Member+

    Sep 5, 2006
    Alief
    Club:
    Houston Dynamo
    Nat'l Team:
    United States
    Name one business decision MLS can make that is blocked by single entity.
     
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  21. Paul Berry

    Paul Berry Member+

    Notts County and NYCFC
    England
    Apr 18, 2015
    Nr Kingston NY
    Nat'l Team:
    United States
    How are teams not in control of their own destiny? They own the league!
     
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  22. adam tash

    adam tash Member+

    Jul 12, 2013
    who to sign. how much they can sign players for. how much to pay the players they do have on their books. how they treat players i.e. college players, internationals, domestic, foreign,...whether it is even worth it to sell a player because they only get a small % of any transfer fee, etc....so many things influenced by single entity!!
     
  23. JasonMa

    JasonMa Member+

    Mar 20, 2000
    Arvada, CO
    Club:
    Colorado Rapids
    Nat'l Team:
    United States
    NFL teams have all the same restrictions but the NFL is not single entity

    Be honest now, you don't really know what single entity means, do you?
     
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  24. adam tash

    adam tash Member+

    Jul 12, 2013
    the NFL is basically single-entity in all intents and purposes....

    it's irrelavant though...despite how much Garber (exNFL man) has molded MLS in NFL's image.....including getting many NFL owners involved in MLS (big mistake, imo)....

    the lack of free agency is a prime example of how single-entity manifests itself in MLS....without single-entity, free agnecy would exist in MLS and the league would be much better off for it!
     
  25. adam tash

    adam tash Member+

    Jul 12, 2013
    NFl teams dont have international slots and pre-determined salary tiers for every player. NFL doesnt tell teams who they can sign.
     

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