ESPN.com’s Jeff Carlisle wrote David Beckman’s decision to stay with the MLS Galaxy and re-sign “with the league marks a validation of sorts.” Whether this “translates into other foreign stars coming to MLS remains to be seen,” but the fact that Beckham “ultimately decided to stay, when his actions at times have practically screamed that he wanted to be somewhere else, is a valuable endorsement, one that observers around the world are bound to notice.” Carlisle: “Without question, MLS doesn't need to be saved by Beckham. It never did. But his return is another milepost in the league's evolution” (ESPN.com, 1/19). Beckham said that “when he landed in North America in 2007 his goal was to raise the game of soccer to the level of more popular sports.” He said that five years later, soccer is “gaining momentum on this continent.” He added that with his family “happy in Los Angeles and more of his sporting missionary work to do … it only made sense to stay” (TORONTO STAR, 1/20).
ALL IN FAVOR? YAHOO SPORTS’ Nicholas Cotsonika reported the NHL and NHLPA are “close to an agreement on the hockey-related revenue the union has disputed, though nothing is signed yet.” It is “a good sign when the two sides agree on anything ahead of collective bargaining, but it’s an especially good sign when they agree on something involving money” (SPORTS.YAHOO.com, 1/19).
SAVE THE DATE: IndyCar CEO Randy Bernard said that Houston “will have an IndyCar street course race ‘very soon.’" In Indianapolis, Curt Cavin notes the “announcement of the 16th race for 2012, which likely will be Milwaukee, is expected Feb. 13 at IndyCar's ‘State of the Series’ presentation at a yet-to-be- determined Indianapolis location” (INDIANAPOLIS STAR, 1/20).