By Josh Kramer
Our entire lives we have been under the impression that there are good guys and bad guys. As young children we watched cartoons. Within these shows such as the Ninja Turtles, Superman, and Batman, there were the good guys and the bad guys. When we played sports growing up the team we were on was always the good guys, while our opponents were labeled the bad guys. And even into our adulthood, the company we work for is generally who we consider to be the good guys, and our competition is the bad guys.
Well in sports, all fans have their opinion of good guys and bad guys. Your hometown team or the team you cheer on are always the good guys while their opponents are always the bad guys. Even when you watch games that the teams you are a fan of are not even participating in, you choose sides generally. Whether it be a rival of your team or you have a wager on the contest, generally you develop an opinion and take sides regarding the ball game.
The NFL lockout has been a very bumpy ride from Day 1. America’s most popular sports League has been on strike since back in March. The light at the end of the tunnel appears to be in sight. In this battle though, it is hard to say who the good guys are and who the bad guys are. As a fan, we just want football. We do not care which side gets the better deal out of the new collective bargaining agreement. As long as our favorite teams and players strap on the pads come Sundays from September to February, we will be happy.
The owners appear to have gained the upper hand on the players now. At this point, the owners seem to be the good guys. They have approved the new CBA in unanimous fashion (outside of the Raiders who abstained). A beautiful move on their part. Now the ball is in the player’s court. And since the owners’ unanimous approval, the players have been voicing their opinions to the media and saying that they are not ready to concede to this new CBA. Apparently this CBA is not exactly what the players thought they had agreed upon. The players have now become the bad guys.
Now when I originally heard that the owners were the first movers on this new CBA, I thought they had made a major mistake. I thought they had given the power to the NFLPA. Show how much I know. The players could sit on this agreement and wait to sign it whenever they pleased. Most players do not have much concern over the preseason. They just want to get paid for the regular season. Owners are the ones who care about the revenues that trickle in from the preseason. So I thought the owners had made a fatal mistake in signing the agreement first.
But then I realized why they did it. By being the first party to sign, they look like the good guys. They look like the ones who really want football back. Now obviously they distorted something in this document and pulled some trickery on the NFLPA. But they have signed. They are ready for football, regardless of if they tricked the NFLPA. The majority of the public does not realize this and now just sees the players as a bunch of whiners who are preventing training camp from starting at this point.
I guess this is why the owners are billionaires who have gained their money due to their business savvy and intelligence while the players are millionaires who have predominantly gained their wealth via their amazing athletic talents. The owners have outsmarted the players here. The longer the players whine and hold off on agreeing to the new CBA, the worse the public perception is going to become of them.
Now I am not fooled by any means by the owners ploy and refuse to take sides. But has this situation finally become an applicable case of good guys versus bad guys?
Stay tuned for the next edition of TheSportsKraze.