how old do u have to be to get a credit card in the uk pay citibank business credit card online credit card credit score list of payday loan lenders uk no credit check icici credit card reward points redeem online reward cards ks2 citibank platinum credit cards low interest payday loans no credit check natwest business credit card machine what are the starting numbers for credit cards aqua credit card online payments iphone credit card charger gas credit cards that are easy to get apply for capital one secured credit card hdfc credit card toll free number payday loan lenders only uk payday loan with bad credit uk chase credit cards travel insurance verifone wireless credit card terminal can you sign up for netflix free trial without credit card cash advance payday loans cibc visa canada credit card get a credit card instantly list of online payday lenders chase credit card cashback calendar icici virtual credit card india legality of storing credit card information credit card offers for good credit icici bank credit card settlement complaint rona advantage credit card login fake credit card information that works online best credit card to get in canada chase visa card application valid credit card number and cvv how to apply for a credit card for the first time online virgin credit card balance transfer australia online credit card payment hsbc credit card bill apply for secured orchard bank credit card hdfc credit cards online application hdfc credit card processing charges can i use us credit card in uk visa card application status how to get a credit card when your under 18 how to apply credit card in icici bank online icici bank credit card apply online best credit card rates nz which credit cards use experian hsbc credit card minimum payment credit limit td emerald visa card post office platinum card online capital one platinum card visa unsecured debt consolidation loans bad credit how do i accept credit card payments formula to calculate credit card interest rate is there a starbucks credit card bad credit no credit loans best cash advance loans companies visa credit card services contact credit card business in india report what is the best credit card terminal company good credit cards for no credit history virgin credit cards customer services can you use credit cards abroad test credit card numbers wiki minimum credit score for sears card best credit card to get free flights 0 interest credit card balance transfer credit cards no credit check unsecured balance transfer fee 0 cash advance credit card fees easy credit cards to apply for with bad credit make fake visa credit card number axis bank lifetime free credit card difference between secured and unsecured credit cards credit card bank of ireland lost can a credit card company garnish your wages in california unsecured post bankruptcy credit cards what banks offer visa debit cards canada sss online loan application form how to fake a credit card number validation check premier credit card status orchard bank credit card address payments do all credit cards have 16 digits do you have to activate a td visa debit card buy visa prepaid card with cash amazon.ca rewards visa card from chase venture capital one balance transfer visa credit card travel insurance canada virgin credit card payment protection pay sears master credit card does bank of america offer virtual credit card numbers barclays bank credit card sign in zero interest credit cards no balance transfer fee are there any guaranteed credit cards mastercard credit card verification phone number discover more card no credit history best cashback credit cards 2012 malaysia hsbc credit card apply eligibility online payday loans no credit check canada credit card application calculator credit card online abn amro ics secured visa credit card cibc rbc best visa card citibank business credit cards with rewards best interest free credit card purchases citibank business credit card contact fast and easy credit card application lane bryant credit card approval rate compare credit card balance transfer offers visa credit card information system canadian credit cards with travel insurance hdfc credit card application declined chase credit card approval odds best reward credit cards 2012 uk first premier credit card online login cabelas visa credit card login watch credit card fraud for dummies best rewards credit card canada 2013 do i need a credit card to build credit history largest credit card issuers in the us 2012 south west trains annual gold card payday loan lender guaranteed approval business mastercard credit card application valero com creditcard american express gold delta skymiles credit card login easy cash loans online nz new payday lenders 2013 cash register with scanner and credit card reader pre-guaranteed credit cards australia applying for a visa credit card online unsecured credit cards for low credit scores credit card rates calculator usaa bank credit card login capital one credit card credit limit increase top 10 cash back credit cards instant credit card approval with bad credit canada how to get a credit card without a bank account accept credit cards over the phone using paypal credit card bad credit unsecured nationwide credit card charges abroad lufthansa miles and more credit card uk citibank credit card application prepaid business credit cards uk perks advantage credit card bank of america credit card applications canada instant approval visa credit cards wiki best united airlines credit card td secured credit card canada hsbc credit card rewards points rewards cards app android best online credit card processing service chase credit card cash advance pin credit card promotions in dubai uob credit card online application malaysia bad credit loans no fee credit cards with cash back rewards cards uk discover credit card activation phone number what is the best visa card to have credit cards and cash back credit card authorization form template word nordstrom credit card master note trust ii first 4 digits major credit cards axis bank credit card settlement letter credit card reader for ipad best buy pre qualified credit cards offers axis bank new credit card apply how long for best buy credit card approval can i apply for a target credit card online easiest unsecured credit card to get approved for with bad credit complete list of all credit cards furniture store credit cards bad credit prepaid travel bmo mastercard best credit card for airline miles with no annual fee dbs black american express credit card bank of america credit card fraud citibank corporate credit card login india credit card numbers that work online pay off credit card debt or save money lane bryant credit card address car loan with bad credit philippines citi american airlines credit card benefits free prepaid credit cards no monthly fee bank of america credit card visa signature united mileage plus credit card promotions best visa credit cards with rewards credit card verification can applying for credit cards hurt credit score standard chartered credit card customer care toll free credit cards apply online bad credit how to pay hdfc master credit card bill easiest unsecured credit card to get in canada cash loans today with no bank account sbi credit card offers on flight booking 2013 post office credit card customer reviews horizon gold card customer service chase credit card balance transfer to checking account citibank credit card minimum payment interest lane bryant credit card contact us walmart store credit card reviews marriott credit card authorization forms small business accepting credit cards bank of america secured credit card for students yatra offers hdfc credit cards how to get cash loans with bad credit credit card loans in singapore apply target visa credit card list of credit card company in usa compare credit cards canada travel prepaid gift credit cards canada reward cards hearthstone halifax balance transfer to current account credit card machines for iphone 4 small online loans instant approval top gas reward cards credit card payoff calculator excel spreadsheet icici bank instant titanium credit card benefits credit card payments on iphone apps who is liable to pay advance tax in india credit card frauds pdf high risk credit cards walmart credit card payments new payday lenders priceline rewards visa card review us bank credit card for bad credit where do you get prepaid credit cards in canada accept credit card payments mobile check the status of my toys r us credit card application can you get a va loan with bad credit score low interest credit cards canada best credit card for airmiles in canada best rewards cards to have southwest visa credit card phone number best deals credit cards canada best buy credit card payments number checklist for comparing credit cards transfer money from capital one credit card to bank account 123 mobile credit card machines best secured credit card to build credit fast 2013 apply for natwest student credit card should you take a 401k loan to pay off credit card debt shell gas credit card offers easy store credit cards for bad credit standard credit card merchant fees credit card balance transfer comparison calculator credit card processing machines india apply for online payday loan wireless credit card terminal verizon credit cards applications online india best credit card consolidation 2012 prepaid visa credit card walmart interest free credit cards balance transfer joint credit card nationwide accepting credit cards with paypal free ipad credit card reader uk documents required for sbi credit card application fast unsecured loans with bad credit western union gold card citifinancial ashley credit card payment whats an easy credit card to get with bad credit air mile credit cards canada recurring credit card authorization form intuit credit card information form html amazon credit card uk review best credit card reward system credit card for bad credit 3 month payday loans no brokers will my credit card company settle for less uk best value credit card rewards australia td visa debit card canada types of citibank credit cards in india poor credit credit cards balance transfer citibank indian oil credit card online application wyndham rewards credit card canada bank of america corporate credit card sign in best secured credit cards in canada 2013 register vanilla mastercard my first credit card no credit history credit card purchase protection mastercard old orchard credit card services ge credit card login guaranteed payday loans for bad credit how to pay bank of america credit card bill natwest credit card points login hdfc credit card charges for foreign currency transactions what does cashback on credit cards mean get free prepaid credit card online best credit card with 0 percent interest pay standard chartered credit card bill axs what are the differences between credit cards and debit cards how to apply ikea friends credit card if i apply for a walmart credit card can i use it today lifetime free credit cards in india 2012 american airlines credit card offer 2012 payday loan online no credit check direct lender best canadian credit card to use in usa credit card app for ipad costco credit card uk college student no credit credit card 12 month payday loans direct lenders zero percent credit cards on purchases zero percent credit card offers no transfer balance fees hbc credit card application getting a credit card with bad credit canada mortgages for bad credit cash loans to your door pay weekly prepaid visa card reloadable online citi credit cards payment best cash back visa credit card 0 credit cards on purchases and balance transfers chase bank secured credit card santander cash back credit card annual fee merchant credit card fees wiki marriott reward credit card offers who is liable to pay advance tax 12 month payday loans pay neiman marcus credit card how to get a high limit credit card with no credit payday loans no fees bad credit hdfc bank credit card login black card amex replica how can i accept credit cards over the phone whats the halo reach credit limit real credit card numbers that work 2013 valid credit card information free mbna virgin credit card contact number costco credit card accepted canada iphone credit card payment uk compare hdfc and sbi credit cards where can i apply for a credit card with poor credit credit card types in canada amex credit card promotions philippines credit card bank of ireland customer service chase freedom credit card cash back categories natwest platinum credit card minimum payment best credit card for business how to get credit card cash advance unsecured credit card to help rebuild credit care credit credit card agreement credit card settlement letter format india chase british airways credit card review new credit card rules for stay at home parents how to get a credit card instantly online consumer reports best credit card to rebuild credit myer visa card travel insurance 6019 - brandsmart usa credit card barclay credit card online banking hdfc titanium international credit card cash loans now uk apply for walmart credit card in store citibank credit card apply kolkata pay as you go credit cards free best visa credit cards with no annual fee apply for credit card online hsbc fast easy online payday loans canada credit card information stolen what to do usaa credit card benefits hdfc credit cards customer care number bankrate average credit card rate apply online credit card idbi bank walmart credit card visa how to reduce your credit card debt yourself disney chase visa credit cards how to pay sbi credit card bill online from hdfc pay day loans over 12 months no brokers how do credit debit card machines work first premier credit card reviews 2012 usaa virtual credit card number reporting unauthorized credit card charges icici credit card online payment through sbi debit card new york and company credit card application square credit card reader ipad 2 best secured credit card to build credit fast credit card offer opt out real credit card numbers that work with security code and expiration date 2013 bank of america credit card phone number uk where can i buy facebook credits cards marriott rewards premier credit card citibank credit card loan calculator how to negotiate with credit card companies to payoff credit card number checker generator krungsri ge credit card online airline reward credit card reviews compare visa credit cards australia hsbc credit card offers sri lanka 2013 tesco credit card travelling abroad chase secured credit card review hdfc bank credit card 5 cash back capital one credit cards for first timers credit card rate reduction credit card charges abroad money saving expert personal online loan lenders top travel credit cards in canada vanquis credit card uk login wells fargo platinum credit card rewards best way to get a car loan with bad credit bad credit loans no guarantor review top 50 credit cards citibank mastercard credit card login paypal sandbox sample credit card number new credit card offers for bad credit compare citibank credit cards credit card balance transfer calculators credit card verification process india free master credit card numbers natwest student credit card ppi paypal pro test credit card numbers low interest rate credit card canada credit cards with no minimum income singapore buy prepaid uk credit card wireless credit card machine costco gas reward cards myfico credit card finder icici bank platinum credit card limit hdfc credit card bank chennai hdfc credit card rewards catalogue titanium credit card monthly interest calculator india credit card student natwest iphone credit card case kickstarter credit score needed for discover student card can i buy visa gift cards with a walmart credit card does american express gold card build credit rfid scanner credit card reader disney credit card review 2013 24 months interest free credit card on purchases new look black fluffy cardigan best credit card with bad credit score cash canada payday loans red deer hsbc credit card business reply envelope credit card settlement offer letter sample paypal credit card fees compare hsbc and citibank credit cards icici bank credit card charges best cashback credit card malaysia 2013 payday loans uk bad credit credit card rewards programs reviews credit card benefits comparison malaysia department store credit cards for bad credit app store uk without credit card best credit card philippines review cibc credit cards dividend american express platinum card benefits cheapest cash advance credit card uk best credit cards for everyday purchases credit card consolidation loans canada payday advance loans for bad credit best credit cards for gas purchases can you use prepaid credit cards online withdraw paypal virtual credit card chase visa credit card logon hdfc gold credit card rate of interest are there any new payday lenders best online credit card processing companies data mining implementation for credit cards application processing system how do i stop pre approved credit card offers valid visa credit card number generator wells fargo credit card cash advance fees chase credit card comparisons compare prepaid credit cards canada credit cards with cashback rewards unsecured bad credit loan nz lowest interest credit card australia payday loans online uk no brokers interest free credit cards on purchases and balance transfers easy payday loan online american express gold card review tesco credit card application declined rebuild credit cards no deposit list of payday lenders no credit check get a credit card without a bank account what is the best 0 balance transfer credit card best 0 purchase credit cards credit expert score union 76 gas credit card hdfc credit card offers on air travel online payday loans canada no credit check how to get a credit card with no job in the philippines hello kitty platinum plus visa credit card american express starwood credit card review hdfc credit cards payment options how do i pay jcpenney credit card online halifax credit card 0800 platinum plus hdfc credit card offers capital one business credit card bad credit best low apr credit cards best travel credit card offers free prepaid visa cards canada pay my national city credit card online credit card application online philippines platinum delta skymiles?î credit card companion ticket does applying for store credit cards affect your credit starwood hotels credit card uk how to get your first credit card 2012 hsbc student credit card apr best low interest fixed rate credit cards credit cards for bad credit 2013 uk sample visa credit card number format bad credit installment loans direct lender how to accept credit cards for your small business can credit card companies garnish your wages in new york
Home Maury Brown Who's to Blame for Frank McCourt Owning the Dodgers?

Like Shoot to Thrill - An AC/DC Tribute on Facebook!

An authentic tribute of AC/DC that covers the best of the Bon Scott era and the best of Brian Johnson's material

Who's Online?

We have 506 guests online

Atom RSS

Who's to Blame for Frank McCourt Owning the Dodgers? PDF Print E-mail
User Rating: / 28
PoorBest 
Written by Maury Brown   
Monday, 01 August 2011 12:03

These were supposed to be the gravy years for Bud Selig. With his contract up for expiration at the end of 2012, the commissioner should have been spending most of his time touting league growth and labor peace.

But instead, Selig is dealing with the mess that Frank McCourt is making of the Dodgers. McCourt has turned into your cousin Eddie. You told him he could stay a while on the couch, and instead, he’s raiding the fridge and talking about you behind your back.

McCourt is Veruca Salt. He’s now stomping his feet saying he wants what’s his, and if he can’t he’s going to make a scene. You can see him holding his breath now.

Where the O’Malley’s build the Dodgers as an edifice to community in Los Angeles; where News Corp. bought them as an edifice to their portfolio, Frank McCourt has built the Dodgers into an edifice of self.

As McCourt has run the value of the club into the ground, been investigated by the California Attorney General for dealings with the Dodgers’ charitable organizations, he’s gotten personal. The most recent is tying amount of salary that the owners set for Bud Selig after growing league revenues from $1.4 billion in 1995 to $7 billion in 2010, to the amount of money that McCourt took from the Dodgers so that he and his former wife Jamie could live an opulent lifestyle.

"The claim that $100 million was taken out of the Dodgers over the course of seven years is patently false," said McCourt in a court filing. "Moreover, even taking the Commissioner's false claim that $100 million was taken out of the Dodgers at face value, it is difficult to understand how the Commissioner can complain about this when he pays himself a salary of approximately $20 million a year -- meaning that he has taken out between $120 million and $140 million from baseball revenues during the same period that he complains about $100 million being taken out by the owner of a team."

The reality, of course, is Selig makes $18.35 million. That amount was set in 2009 after making $17.5 million.

Selig has been lambasted for letting McCourt own the Dodgers in the first place. In Boston, fans have breathed a sigh of relief that he could have nearly owned the Red Sox. The reality is, McCourt lucked out and stumbled into the Dodgers.

Malcolm Glazer, MLB and NFL Rules

Frank McCourt was never supposed to wind up with the Dodgers. Malcolm Glazer was ahead of him. So was former Seattle Mariner owner Jeff Smulyan and Los Angeles developer Alan Casden, who initially had a higher bid than Glazer, were well in front of McCourt. He was a fallback plan, and even then, very nearly didn’t wind up with the club. When News Corp put the Dodgers up for sale, the deal was supposed to go to Malcolm Glazer.

The problem was, Glazer owns the NFL Tampa Bay Buccaneers. That bumped into problems with the NFL.

The NFL has rules stating that if you’re going to purchase a club in another league, you can’t use NFL assets as collateral to get loans to make the purchase. The NFL also requires that you have an independent management team in place for the club outside the NFL. Glazer had been trying since April of 2002 to make both happen, and couldn’t. One idea on the management side was to have his son Ed, who lived in Los Angeles, run the Dodgers. That didn’t fly well with MLB. As one executive put it, they were concerned with Ed’s "management credentials."

"We'd love it to be moving more quickly," a News Corp. executive said to the LA Times regarding the negotiations, "but it's not."

Impatient, News Corp Pushes for McCourt

It didn’t move faster, and News Corp got impatient. Looking to get out from the Dodgers as fast as possible, they looked to Frank McCourt who had missed out on the Red Sox and Angels to complete a sale. The reasons that McCourt missed out on both of those sales had to due as much with how he had money wrapped up as to whether there will better bids available. He would have never been able to pull either of those sales off without other investors. The Dodgers was about being at the right place at the right time for McCourt.

From the get go, there were concerns, namely how McCourt would pay for the Dodgers, but Allen & Co. said not to worry. It was there…. Just not “there”.

If there were a point where MLB could have stepped in and tried to put a foot down, it could have been when they heard McCourt had a liquidity problem – everything was tied up in property – and the purchase would be highly leveraged, so much so that it would be in violation of the league’s debt service rule.

As it does now, the problem for the league is one of stopping sales transactions unless they are exceptionally fragile. With News Corp it was a delicate balancing act. They wanted out, and had been for some time. They were impatient as the Glazer deal had floundered. They were the league’s national broadcast partner through Fox. They were now pushing for McCourt.

Red flags were thrown almost immediately about the sale structure and McCourt was struggling to get the deal done. Talk was that McCourt would get the green light at the owners meetings in November of 2003, but it had to be taken off the agenda because McCourt still has not forwarded most of the paperwork that the commissioner's office needed to review before scheduling a vote.  

Selig kept saying that he trusted Allen & Co. to pull the sale together without any issues. McCourt’s people kept pointing to the protracted sale process between the O’Malley’s and News Corp. Of course the difference there was News Corp had billions to draw from. McCourt had little to none.

Eli Broad Steps in at the 11th Hour

Along with this, the community started to stir. McCourt had been virtually invisible, not saying anything in the media or otherwise about his plans for the Dodgers. As the exclusivity deadline for McCourt to close the deal approached Los Angeles developer and billionaire philanthropist Eli Broad stepped in.

Broad said he would be a fallback in case McCourt couldn’t make the deal happen. L.A. Mayor James Hahn backed Broad. 

"As to what significance the development with Eli Broad has is a question for News Corp.," then MLB president Bob DuPuy said. "As for baseball, we have no reaction in the sense that News Corp. has asked us to process the McCourt application and that's what we're attempting to do. I think both the buyer and seller want it done and that's what we're trying to do."

News Corp didn’t care about Broad. After all the work they had put in with Glazer and now McCourt, they wanted out. A Fox Group official said to the LA Times that company execs "were not entertaining Broad's offer and were pressing ahead with McCourt.”

MLB could have pushed McCourt to sell assets to allow him to have more cash in the deal, but the league was concerned that if that needed to happen, it could depress the sale price, something the league is always looking to avoid.

"We've been told by Allen & Co. and McCourt that he'd be able to finance the purchase on his own if need be," DuPuy said.

McCourt Lands the Dodgers

In the end, McCourt was approved on Jan. 29 of 2004 as new owner of the Dodgers, but there was a lot of talk amongst Executive and Ownership Committee about the deal. They were nervous about the extent to which McCourt was leveraged.

Here’s how financial structure for McCourt worked out:

In three separate transactions, News Corp loaned McCourt $196 million. The remaining $225 million of the $421 million sale was done through Bank of America.

The Fallout in the Front Office

You’ll likely never get Bud Selig (or any of the owners) on record, but if you could have polled them 6 months after the sale to McCourt, they would have said they had made a mistake. Some of the best front office execs were either fired or left the organization following McCourt’s purchase.

President Bob Graziano, executive vice president of business Kris Rone left over what was deemed philosophical differences with Frank and Jamie McCourt. As noted in the LA Times on March 9, 2004, “sources familiar with the situation said that both questioned the viability of a business plan based on a best-case scenario. If that best case doesn't totally evolve -- and seldom do all of the pieces fall in place in baseball -- Graziano and Rone were concerned, the sources said, about McCourt's long-term operating potential given the level of the debt servicing in his highly leveraged purchase of the club.”

Derrick Hall, Dodger senior vice president also fled. Along the way, there were firings, including GM Dan Evans who was left hanging while whispers of Billy Beane and Paul DePodesta wafted about as replacements.

Who’s to Blame?

The Dodgers are a victim of circumstance. Glazer being unable to get around the NFL’s rules… the issue with Ed Glazer not being a suitable management fit for MLB… News Corp pushing for the sale…. McCourt’s liquidity problem that Allen & Co said would never be an issue. No one thing is the true catalyst. The league was in a no-win situation and are now dealing with Frankruptcy, and I’m sure they hate themselves for it.

One day, Frank McCourt will no longer own the Dodgers. All owners are simply stewards of club ownership. The name and the brand far outlive those that have owned them over the decades. What you hope is that MLB has learned its lesson. If it feels wrong, and the particulars are bad, then if you can’t stop a sale, the least they can do is force partnerships that can take the edges off. Who knows what would have happened if there would have been more of a group partnership as opposed to just Frank and Jamie McCourt pushing for the new Think Blue?


Maury BrownMaury Brown is the Founder and President of the Business of Sports Network, which includes The Biz of Baseball, The Biz of Football, The Biz of Basketball and The Biz of Hockey, and is a contributor to Forbes SportsMoney blog.. He is available as a freelance writer. Brown's full bio is here. He looks forward to your comments via email and can be contacted through the Business of Sports Network (select his name in the dropdown provided).

Follow Maury Brown on Twitter Twitter

Follow The Biz of Baseball on TwitterTwitter

FacebookFollow the Business of Sports Network on Facebook

 
 
Banner

Poll

Should MLB Force Jeffery Loria to Sell the Marlins?