Monday, July 28, 2008


Sonny Bill Williams

I think that all this animosity towards SBW is so hypocritical. SBW is a superstar of the NRL. He’s marketable and he’s good (ok, maybe a little overrated sometimes but hey, look at David Beckham). Can you blame anyone for getting their worth? I mean, if another big company thinks you’re worth more than you are currently on and are willing to give you an opportunity with them, wouldn’t you listen to what they have to offer?

Ok, so he’s still got 5 years or so left to go on his contract but what’s the fuss? Don’t tell me the club forgot to put a clause in the contract for a gazillion dollars if he decides to leave prematurely. If so, they should probably hire those lawyers that work on insurance policies. Even if the transfer fee is, say 2-3 times the current value of the player, wouldn’t the club stand to gain more by selling one good player and having enough cash to sign several cheaper stars or wait till another talent comes along? It's not like they're relying on a portion of the guy's jersey sales.

The head-honchos in the NRL need to walk into the players’ locker room after a game and take a deep breath. Hopefully that’ll knock some senses into them. As if they didn’t know that professional sports these days is a business. Look at all the major clubs or teams in professional sports. From Man U to the L.A Lakers, you pay big bucks to your stars even if you have to go into debt or pay luxury tax. Look at the current situation in Man U with another No. 7 (Ronaldo) considering a move to Madrid. I’d say 95% is motivated by moolah, the other 5% is miscellaneous and not necessary loyalty seeing that he did not come through the junior ranks. If you have a strict salary cap, you better pray that those leagues with no caps don’t come knocking. Or if they do, have a clause that reads, ‘player must watch Schindler’s List without falling asleep’ or something similar to that effect.

With agents and those standing to gain from a new deal being so close to these young athletes, they would be working overtime and using their experience to persuade them into leaving even if they’re thinking of doing otherwise.

I’m sure a lot of athletes are constantly under pressure with the possibility of being discarded like a used tampon when they’re not performing or injured when the transfer season opens. They would have heard from fellow team mates and friends of how unjust and cruel management can be sometimes in not seeking out their opinions or even informing them that they are being cut or moved. Life can be tough if you’re a has-been or a role player in professional sports. So, why not earn as much as they can in the 10 or so years they have? Who are we to say that SBW or anyone has no right in leaving a team? We drop a few coins for entry to the game and we think we own them?

Sad fact of life is Cash Rules Everything Around Me.

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