It’s been a long week and there is apparently some other stuff in the news and also I want to go read the new Deadspin writers’ temporary blog that is not Deadspin, so let’s get straight to this week’s roundup, which is long, because remember what I literally just said about it having been a long week?
- Nashville Mayor John Cooper is still holding firm on refusing to allow demolition to begin, citing what he says is a doubling of projected, city infrastructure costs, and both team and league officials are kicking off negotiations by whining at him in public, via a joint press statement that “MLS Commissioner Don Garber made it clear to Mayor Cooper that Major League Soccer would not have awarded Nashville an expansion team without the commitment made by the city to build a soccer stadium at the Fairgrounds” and “the Mayor’s continued refusal to proceed is a deep disappointment to Nashville SC and MLS.” To which Cooper is totally free to say, Yeah, well, you shoulda finalized everything before approving the expansion team, then, you’ve gotta deal with me now. Hardball works for both sides!
- The San Francisco 49ers and Kansas City Chiefs are getting free hotel rooms for the Super Bowl courtesy of Miami taxpayers after, in the words of the Miami Herald, “Miami’s Super Bowl Host Committee recently sent invoices totaling $1 million to the county’s budget office from the J.W. Marriott Marquis hotel downtown and Aventura’s Turnberry resort to cover an NFL requirement for subsidized rooms provided to players earning millions for teams owned by billionaires.” Reminder: The Super Bowl is garbage and football kills people.
- Roger Goodell didn’t stop at shaking down Buffalo for a new stadium this week, but tried to shake down Toronto as well, saying that it “certainly could be a great city for an NFL team” but “a stadium up to NFL standards is going to be an important element.” Toronto actually has two football stadium, but one only seats 25,000 and one is omigod over 30 years old, so time for a third stadium if you really want the NFL, which Toronto residents honestly don’t seem to all that badly.
- Jacksonville has given the fourth-tier NPSL (barely above semipro) Jacksonville Armada an option on buying city land for a new 10,000-seat stadium, with no details at all on how the stadium would be paid for or how much the Armada owners would pay for the land or what it’s worth, why bother reporting on stuff like that? There is a “sports event manager” saying “at the same time you bring more and more of these sporting events to town, it brings more and more people here,” just drop that in and hit Publish, we’ve got important RV dealer promotions to fluff!
- Do you want to have your say about what the new Calgary Flames arena that’s costing the public $250 million or more will look like? Then connect with their “ambassador team” or take their online survey, which involves such things as which “iconic experiences” like Beakerhead or the High Performance Rodeo make you “proud of Calgary.” Then you could win an Entertainment Prize Package! This is what democracy looks like!
- The NFL doesn’t just hold one big event in February where human beings bash their heads together until their brain cells die, it has the Pro Bowl too, which it’s currently shopping around to cities like Los Angeles and Las Vegas to see, presumably, who will agree to cough up free hotel rooms. Also there’s a new rule that the team that scores doesn’t have to give up the ball! Maybe they should try making Canada and Mexico the end zones, that should get people’s attention.
- A Hamilton developer says he can remodel the city’s arena with no tax money involved, and he must be telling the truth because he has a rendering featuring people crossing the street against the light, actually there are no traffic lights or crossing signals at all, this isn’t how “value engineering” is supposed to work!
- Atlanta Falcons fans defaulted on $32 million worth of personal seat licenses in 2019, but this is the Falcons owners’ problem since the money comes out of their pockets and anyway they can always try to find new fans to re-sell the PSLs to, ideally once the team doesn’t suck so much anymore. If you are neither a Falcons fan nor a Falcons owner, this mostly matters to you as yet another lesson that sports fans go to watch good sports teams, not new sports stadiums.
- The Erie Seawolves owners are hoping their stadium renovations will save their team from getting contracted, and if MLB really does start offering to remove teams from its hit list if they upgrade their stadiums, that would be a much more comprehensible shakedown than the one they’re pursuing so far.
- The Kansas City Royals don’t have a downtown stadium plan at all, but that’s not going to stop architecture firms from releasing their own renderings of what one could look like, and omigod it’s the cab-hailing purse lady from Worcester and Halifax!
I absolutely cannot wait for the first stadium report to calculate the projected economic impact of Cab-Hailing Purse Woman. Clearly she’ll go anywhere to see a game of baseball and/or soccerfootball! How can your city possibly turn up its nose at the spending on ride-hailing services she will bring?
UPDATE: Someone just forwarded me another article with more Royals stadium renderings, and OMG that sign:
If you’re having trouble reading it, the side facing the camera reads “HEY CDC KC HAS THE FEVER,” which is apparently a joke about the coronavirus epidemic now threatening to sweep the globe? And the other side, facing the field, reads “TODAY’S MY BIRTHDAY SURPRISE ME WITH A WIN” which is a way too on-the-nose reference to the fact that the Royals have lost more than 100 games the last two years. Forget any innovations in stadium design, I want to hear more about how the Royals can draw more fans by encouraging negging.