Wednesday, April 30, 2014
Would Promotion/Relegation Work for the NBA, NFL, NHL and MLB?
My feeling is yes it can. But, will it be instituted anytime soon for any of them? No, probably not.
But, it is an interesting question to ask, if it indeed would make owners of American professional sports teams more money in the long run.
If a system is built to support all owners of teams from the minor leagues on up to the top league (numerical divisions typically are used for soccer), each sport could have a better foundation to grow and thrive.
The promotion/relegation system has many capitalistic and evolutionary characteristics that are similar to the U.S. way of life.
Geographically and economically speaking, if metro areas increase or decrease by population, teams could end up promoting or relegating depending on how the economy is for that metro area. For example, the Clevelands and Detroits of the world will have a tougher time and the Omahas and Boises of the world will be trying to move up.
If a team somewhere in the U.S. feels it has the necessary economical foundation to compete at a higher level, shouldn't it get that chance if it is able to prove itself along the way? Remember that we are not always talking about jumps from the second highest level to the highest. It can be that the goal for an owner is to get from the third level to the second level.
The hardest part is to build stadiums and arenas for which all owners can agree are sufficient for promotion sakes. A team that sits 5,000 for baseball won't work for MLB, or would it? The stadium situation can't be rectified in one season in case of promotion, but, if the Tv revenue is enough for that owner to live off and sign players, shouldn't the decision lie with them?
Most people prefer to watch sports from Tv over attending the event, anyways. The stadium situation will never be perfect.
There is already a set minor leagues of sorts for the NBA, NHL and MLB that could develop into a promotion/relegation system. The NFL uses college football for its minor leagues.
I suggest the NFL could create an eight-team minor league (second division) for its promotion/relegation and have teams seal off the top-levels of stadiums unless the seats are needed.
There's no way to know for sure which system is best for U.S. pro sports owners to use. It is incredibly dismissive and naive to think that a promotion/relegation system would not be beneficial.