SBD/August 22, 2017/Leagues and Governing Bodies

Source: Roger Goodell's Possible Extension Would See Base Salary More Than Double

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The NFL's looming contract extension with Commissioner Roger Goodell would see his "base salary more than double," though it is unclear "whether his total compensation will increase," according to a source cited by Ken Belson of the N.Y. TIMES. The league "declined to say whether the commissioner’s contract would be extended." Goodell’s compensation is "decided by the compensation committee," led by Falcons Owner Arthur Blank. By extending Goodell’s contract through '24, the owners have decided that he is the "best person to negotiate" a new CBA (N.Y. TIMES, 8/22).

BUSINESS IS BOOMING: In Boston, Ben Volin writes Goodell has been "good for business" since becoming commissioner in '06, and that is enough for the 32 owners who "pull the strings, no matter how one-sided his investigations are or how many draft picks he docks from teams." Goodell has been "good for business, and he is here to stay, whether the fans and players like it or not" (BOSTON GLOBE, 8/22). The L.A. Times' Bill Plaschke said Goodell “has earned every penny” of his extension. He made the owners $14B last year, $1B "more than the year before.” Plaschke: "You may not like how he runs the league, you may not like his discipline actions. Owners love him. He’s earned his money.” The Colorado Springs Gazette's Woody Paige noted Goodell “has been a great CEO," and the owners are "happy, except for a couple of examples." The Dallas Morning News' Tim Cowlishaw noted players "think he’s been a little out of control.” However, if someone makes "big money for the owners, you get them big TV contracts, you get them new stadiums and you have labor peace … you’re going to get extended” ("Around The Horn," ESPN, 8/21). In Toronto, John Kryk writes if fans are wondering why owners are trying to secure Goodell for another five years, it is because of "all the money Rodge has made them" (TORONTO SUN, 8/22).

BETTER OFF NOW THAN EVER BEFORE: FS1's Colin Cowherd said, "It is the old Ronald Reagan line: ‘Are you better off than you were four years ago?’ Ratings, relocation, revenue, and they just signed a couple years ago a 10-year CBA that is viewed as overwhelmingly in favor of the owner. Owners right now are real happy." FS1's Seth Joyner: "As long as he is producing the way the 32 owners want him to produce, they don't care what everybody else thinks” (“Speak for Yourself,” FS1, 8/21). ESPN's Jemele Hill noted Goodell has been "great for the bottom line, and that is all (owners) care about." Hill: "Look at the number of teams that have moved. You have the Raiders moving to Vegas, and that’s putting billions in people's pockets. Everybody's value is up." ESPN’s Michael Smith: “He is not in the business of making players happy, he is not in the business of making friends. He is in the business of making money, and business is a-booming" ("SportsCenter," ESPN, 8/21).

EARNING HIS MONEY: ESPN's Adam Schefter said despite having issues with two prominent owners in the Patriots' Robert Kraft and the Cowboys' Jerry Jones, Goodell is being extended because the “league is making more money, the popularity is greater than ever before." Schefter: "You can say that has nothing to do with Roger, that's fine. The fact of the matter is he's the CEO of a large company here where the values are booming, the money's rolling in and he's at the head of it" ("NFL Live," ESPN2, 8/21). NBCSPORTSBAYAREA.com's Ray Ratto wrote the owners "sent the message that, whatever the state of his petty feuds with allegedly powerful owners" like Kraft and Jones, they are "unwilling to overturn the car to spite the roadway." For all the criticism Goodell takes -- and "maybe because he’s the one who takes it rather than his 32 bosses -- he keeps his real constituency content, if not necessarily happy" (NBCSPORTSBAYAREA.com, 8/21). ESPN’s Michael Wilbon said the extension is deserved because Goodell is the “whipping boy for the owners.” ESPN's Tony Kornheiser: “The owners sit back and they say, ‘You know what? We are not being booed. That guy’s being booed’” (“PTI,” ESPN, 8/21).
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