And in other news:
- MLB attendance is down 4.2% this year, something commissioner Rob Manfred blames on bad weather but which can more reasonably be blamed on bad teams — in particular bad teams in cities that were previously drawing well (Toronto, Baltimore, Detroit, Texas). The Oakland A’s have been good this year, but their attendance has barely risen, something team president Dave Kaval says he hopes a new stadium will fix by encouraging “new people to engage our product”; that has worked out extremely poorly for the Miami Marlins, but then, engaging the Marlins’ product right now will probably make you less likely to attend games, not more so.
- The Detroit Red Wings‘ and Pistons‘ new arena has turned its area of Detroit into “a dynamic, connected stretch that has grown and attracted new businesses and investment with the promise of much more to come,” according to a press release by the Red Wings’ ownership group that the Detroit Free Press seemingly just up and reprinted, seriously, are they even trying?
- German soccer fans protested high ticket prices this week by staging 20 minutes of silence at the start of games, as well as unfurling a giant banner reading (in English) “Football is for you and me — not for fucking pay-TV.”
- The government of Manitoba has written off the entire $200 million cost of the Winnipeg Blue Bombers‘ stadium, saying there’s no way the team (which is owned by a nonprofit corporation with no shareholders) will ever repay it. When the stadium was approved in 2010, I noted that “the public is taking on a fair bit of risk” by loaning the team the money; guess that was a bit of an understatement.
- The defunct Camden Riversharks‘ stadium is set to be torn down just 17 years after it was built, something we already covered here last year, but this gives the Associated Press the opportunity to run the headline “Baseball stadium built 17 years ago to boost tourism faces wrecking ball,” so more power to ’em.
- There’s a petition drive in Austin to block the new stadium for the soon-to-be-erstwhile Columbus Crew, which was already approved but not contractually finalized, so more power to ’em, too, I guess.
- Ha ha ha ha, Oakland Raiders execs are really considering playing a season in San Diego as part of their hissy fit over Oakland’s possible antitrust suit, though CBS Sports notes that it’s pretty unlikely given that the Los Angeles Rams and Chargers owners would almost certainly raise objections.
- People who want an NBA franchise in Louisville say they’d consider building a new arena for it, despite Louisville already having two perfectly good basketball arenas, which is arguably even more crazy than the idea of Louisville getting an NBA franchise at all.
- Jacksonville Jaguars and Fulham F.C. owner Shad Khan has had his purchase of London’s Wembley Stadium from England’s Football Association for $800 million approved, but he says he’s not moving either team into it, he just wants to rake in the money from concerts and such. The stadium turned a £5.5million profit last year, which would be a dismal return on an $800 million investment, so who the hell knows what Khan is thinking, but “This will scare Jacksonville into giving me more stadium upgrade money” has to be at least part of it.