Yesterday, I wrote about how MLB is one step closer to forcing the sale of the Los Angeles Dodgers, and that I was personally rooting for Mark Cuban to be the next owner.
Putting aside the fact that even if Cuban was interested, MLB probably wouldn't let him buy any baseball team, Cuban came out yesterday and basically withdrew his name from consideration.
The primary reason he gave is because the Dodgers are such a mess, and he's not sure what would be included or not in the purchase. This is because Frank McCourt has divided the Dodgers into separate entities.
So, if Mark Cuban is on the fence about even attempting to buy the Los Angeles Dodgers because you don't know if the parking lots and Dodger Stadium itself would be included in the purchase, would anyone else be interested?
If Frank McCourt is able to keep ownership of the parking lots and Dodgers Stadium, the value of the Dodgers goes down significantly. A big money-maker for any franchise is the money brought in by fans paying for parking, leasing out the stadium for other events such as rock concerts and the tax breaks/incentives given to the team that the stadium they play in brings.
I'm not sure anyone would consider buying the team without being able to own everything associated with it. I'm not a lawyer, so I don't know if MLB can also force McCourt to give up the parking lots, stadium, etc., like they can force him to sell the team.
I'm sure they'll argue that even though they're "separate entities," the parking lots and the stadium itself are part of the Dodgers franchise (or whatever legalese they need to make it happen).
If MLB can convince a court that the parking lots and stadium also are part of the Dodgers, Cuban might just be willing to throw his hat back into the ring when the team goes up for sale.
Cuban was right about one thing; the Dodgers are a mess, and it will take a lot to fix them. For an owner like Cuban, who is willing to spend the money to do so just like he did when he bought the Dallas Mavericks, it's not impossible to do. It will take time and effort, but it can be done.
No matter who the MLB decides is the next owner of the Los Angeles Dodgers, they're in for an uphill battle to bring back the fans and restore this historic franchise back to its rightful place in baseball.
Here's to hoping that the right owner steps up and is willing to take on the challenge.
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