The next ten years - MLS 3.0

Discussion in 'MLS: Commissioner - You be The Don' started by deejay, Oct 30, 2012.

  1. deejay

    deejay Member+

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    About ten years ago, the powers that be in MLS figured out the initial business model of MLS was not working. I wasn't there but most likely they decided on the following targets for the next ten years to become MLS 2.0, so to speak.
    • Teams - Abandon the under-preforming teams.
    • Stadiums - Build SSS for each team.
    • Owners - Find new owners to take teams - no more multi-team owners
    • Expansion - Expand to 20 teams but only with owners who can guarantee an SSS.
    • Game - Make the game closer to the rest of the world. Abandon shootouts and counting assists for the top scorer.
    In the last ten years, MLS has hit all of the points with a near 100% effectiveness. We've seen increased attendance, improved TV contracts and sponsorships.
    Now that we are MLS 2.0, the challenge here is to imagine what MLS 3.0 will look like. Here are some questions to think about.
    1. Teams - Should Chivas and other under-performing teams be relocated? Would that hurt the brand too much?
    2. Stadiums - a) Do we concentrate on relocating to more urban settings? Should Toyota Park and FCD stadium be abandoned or should we stay and build the base. b) Should we increase the stadium size? c) Should we upgrade our older stadiums?
    3. Owners - Should we start looking for richer owners or a different type? Should we start asking more of our owners? What should the entrance fee be?
    4. Expansion - Do we still concentrate on expansion at the same rate or slow down? We still haven't reached the South and the Midwest is underrepresented.
    5. Game - Should we be on the international schedule?


  2. Yoshou

    Yoshou Moderator Staff Member

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    Why? FCD, Colorado, and SKC have shown that relocation isn't necessary to turn a team around. All that is needed is a dedicated FO that is willing to build on the support that is currently there.

    Yet again, location of the stadium hasn't proven to be an issue, unless Frisco is moving closer and closer to Dallas.. What is important is a FO that is willing to build on the support that is already there. Increases in size of stadiums is entirely up to the owners and should really only be ventured if they consistently fill the stadium for a protracted period of time.

    The expansion fee will be set by whatever the market will bear and its bound to be hard to find richer owners than MLS already has..

    It will be difficult to maintain the speed of expansion that MLS has had since 2007... So it seems that slow down is the only option.
    I assume you mean Fall-Spring schedule rather than "international schedule". MLS isn't even close to being popular enough for people to want to put up with the freezing cold weather that is experienced in a majority of the cities that have teams.. Imagine the excitement of catching a below 0F game in Toronto or Montreal.. That'll be awesome!
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  3. ceezmad

    ceezmad Member+

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    I would wait until 2014 and the new TV contracts to start to think about MLS 3.0, to see if the TV money jumps a lot or a little.

    I know ratings are flat, but a few K ratings can still command a lot of money now in days.

    Well does that mean New England and Chivas USA?

    Well not in New England, DC (maybe soon), well not really Vancouver but it is good enough, same with Seattle. I guess Chivas plays in an SS even when it is not theirs.


    Still have 2 owners with 2 teams each,but word is AEG is getting out of the sports business, so they may sell LA and Houston soon.

    Not sure, would they turn down Minnesotan in the new Metro-dome? also technically Vancouver does not have an SS, they share it with the CFL team, but is a much better situation than New England and DCU for sure.

    Also if farmers field is built, would you be ok with the LA Galaxy moving to a 50K+ stadium? even if they only sell 30K tickets per game?

    They did abandon the shoot out and backwards running clock for sure.

    Not sure, it depends on the TV money IMO.
  4. ceezmad

    ceezmad Member+

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    1 thing about the stadiums, Most SS stadiums are around 20K, expandable to different sizes, say 25K-30K.

    Does MLS 3.0 just expand the Stadiums, that would make more economical sense.

    Would that then mean MLS 4.0 would be a return to NFL stadiums?

    I mean for the FIRE, the city is broke so they are not going to expand the stadium, that would be up to the owners, but say they expand to 30K, and demand for the game is 40K, what do they do?

    Do they let the demand raise the ticket prices and rack in the profits, or do they try the Seattle way, move to Soldiers field and tarp off the 300 and 400 levels?

    So I guess my question is MLS 3.0 would they be happy with expanded stadiums even if they limit to around 25K the seating or do they build "in-between" stadiums of 40-45K?


    Maybe

    MLS 3.0 expanded current stadiums
    MLS 4.0 builds in between stadiums
    MLS 5.0 expands in between stadiums
    MLS 6.0 moves to NFL stadiums

    or

    MLS 3.0 expanded current stadiums
    MLS 4.0 moves into NFL stadiums and tarps off sections Seattle style
    MLS 5.0 Fills out NFL stadiums (takes them over after NFL teams build even bigger stadiums).


  5. deejay

    deejay Member+

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    Hey, this is the forum where we try to be the Don. The topic I'm trying to get to is that we've reached just about everything we've dreamed about in 2002. What's the next step? I don't care if you mention or touch all the subjects I put in the introduction.

    By the way, Mr Warmth...just...wow.
  6. canammj

    canammj Member

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    Nothing wrong with this thread if it is kept on subject.
    Without a doubt MLS 2.0 has worked great.
    My concerns for going 3.0 and beyond are=

    1/ TV ratings still not great. NBCS has done a great job- the production is first class, the picture is clean.
    I like them covering the players walk in like the world cup and including the nation anthem. Pre and post game shows are good also. And what more can be said about a TRIPLE-HEADER from last weekend?. We simply need more people to watch. Hopefully with NBCS now doing EPL, the cross promotion will continue and increase. EPL-<MLS double hitters etc. Increase promos on the regular NBC and yes, even during NFL and NCAA games so people will maybe look over on the cable cousin

    2/ Players. I am concerned with not enough US players on the field and rosters on some teams. The league is a major part of the success of USMNT. Not sure all the details of the current rules, but I think we need to take another look at how many Americans are on the field, not just on the total roster.

    3/ Don't think currently built SSS will be a problem, as honestly, not all teams are selling out every ticket , every game. I have no problem add 2,000-5,000 seats (or whatever) to current SSS where the market warrants. Borrow a NFL/NCAA stadium when you do a really big game. That carries the league into another decade. A good in between step. Work with the last couple teams to resolve their stadium issues. Continue the trend to add teams that have or are building a SSS.

    4/ League has to stay on summer schedule. Need to clean up the scheduling though. I know I will get flamed for this, but we need to cut the international friendles right in the mid-season. Before and after season, no problem. This frees up space in our schedule to accommodate FIFA dates, USOC and CCL. My extreme request is to cut down MLS playoffs or eliminate all together.
    Single table Supporters Shield is all we need to set CCL participants. If the league goes
    beyond 20 , say to 24 teams, I put 12 in West and 12 East and the MLS cup could simply be a 2 game home-away between #1 W vs. #1 E. Have to make the regular season mean a bit more and bump up the interest in the important cups. Domestic USOC and Regional CCL.

    5/ If you continue to play all these games, the roster size needs to go up a bit more and just as important, coaches must use more of the roster more often. Our squads are just not that deep and a couple injuries here and there really can hurt.

    6/ Come to better working arrangements with NASL-USL pro-PDL and even NPSL.
    Would love to see a stronger working relationship very much like MLB- AAA,AA,A etc.
    Player movements , assigning draft picks to lower levels to learn the trade the way baseball does.
    Financial matters and benefits should be set to benefit all teams.

    7/ Player salaries need to take another bump on the low end and the higher end needs to be watched so we do end up like NASL-1 did. Whatever issues where not completely addressed in the last contract need to be revisited and I would like negotiations to start well before the current contract expires so that all the issues are on the plate and be resolved early so that there no impacts to continued smooth running of the league.

    8 I agree that we should be 1 team, 1 owner with the whole league. Some owners will be stronger than others, some will splash some cash, some won't. An owner taking on another partner should be ok as long as it improves the teams. You can really do anything about an owner who doesn't put the effort in, unless the board or league changes or revises(?) rules.

    I now return you to your regularly operated dream.
  7. Achowat

    Achowat Member+

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    There's no such thing as an "international schedule" and to suggest that one exists is a lie
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  8. Hachiko

    Hachiko The Akita on Big Soccer

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    Like cake?
  9. Achowat

    Achowat Member+

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    No, like half-decade old references to a video game that, if we're all honest, wasn't even that good.
  10. Hachiko

    Hachiko The Akita on Big Soccer

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    Well, that too. Actually, we have two international schedules: the spring to autumn schedule and the summer to spring schedule. We just happen to use the former.
  11. Achowat

    Achowat Member+

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    That's not true, either.
  12. Hachiko

    Hachiko The Akita on Big Soccer

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    You sure about that? The former is used by countries like Japan, Norway, Sweden, Ireland, Korea...and quite a few others.

    Two types of international schedules exist. Problem here is that people like you choose to be in denial over this reality.
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  13. Achowat

    Achowat Member+

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    Every league sets its own calendar. There is no "International Calendar", nor could there be. They all play a different number of games, have different Cups and Cup formats, some have pro/rel playoffs...

    There is not now, nor has there ever been an "International Calendar" or schedule or anything like that. FIFA has blocked off it's dates where players need to be available for international duty. Everything else, everything, is up to the Leagues and FAs.
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  14. Hachiko

    Hachiko The Akita on Big Soccer

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    But every league generally chooses to have their league set to either spring to fall/early winter (like US) or summer to spring (like Premier League). Those are the tendencies. Sure, every league sets its own calendar but on average, it is either one of those two categories. I've yet to see proof of a league play from January to December nonstop every year without an offseason.
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  15. Achowat

    Achowat Member+

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    That, in itself, does not an "international calendar" make
  16. Hachiko

    Hachiko The Akita on Big Soccer

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    Only to you. We know.
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  17. deejay

    deejay Member+

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    Achowat, let's not nitpick on details. There is a FIFA schedule for international tournaments and friendlies ergo my use of the term international schedule. Virtually all of June and July are destined for those games. FIFA has hinted before that they would like MLS to break during those games. Even if you don't agree with the terminology please just post your plan for the next ten years and don't get off topic about something so minor.
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  18. Achowat

    Achowat Member+

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    No, I'm going to.

    You said "use the international calendar" as a way to say "start doing things like everyone else". The problem is, everyone else isn't doing that. That's the whole of it! If you want to go fall-spring, you're dumb (but we can talk about why you're dumb if you want). But I refuse, refuse, 100%, to allow someone to suggest that MLS is going against every other footballing nation by the way we schedule our games.

    If you say Fall-Spring is the "International Calendar", then you are saying something that's not true. Since you know it's not true, it's a lie. Every single time you attempt to decieve us through your subtle attempt to suggest that MLS is an international football pariah, you're lying. Every single time.
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  19. deejay

    deejay Member+

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    I have never, ever supported MLS being on a Fall-Spring schedule. I have never, ever supported relegation in MLS. I have been ambivalent about MLS having breaks on international dates but I have never ever said that we have to do so. I've been here over a decade and I've been consistent on this. I can still use the term and not support that position. Just like people can say "the MLS" and genuinely love the league.
  20. deejay

    deejay Member+

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    I'm guessing I've "sinned" here by using some term that has been under discussion on some other thread. I don't see the purpose of being offended by terminology but bigsoccer will be bigsoccer I suppose.
  21. The Green Mushroom

    The Green Mushroom Member

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    Why on Earth would the MLS want to play on the World Cup's schedule?
    1. We don't have enough teams to fill the three and a half years without the finals.
    2. Only having one champion every fourth year would be financial suicide.
    3. Who would watch MLS if it is only played on the same days as the World Cup?
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  22. Allez RSL

    Allez RSL Member+

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    The moves the league made in the latter half of the last decade (the aughts? naughts? naughties?) were all about stabilizing teams and building attendance.

    If the league wants to take the next step, it's all about TV revenues. Scheduling, relocation, stadium sizes, quality of domestic players/academy productivity are all secondary to increasing TV income by at least an order of magnitude. None of these other changes will appreciably change MLS in the same way that the move from NFL stadiums to SSSs changed MLS.

    I don't know how that happens, though, so this isn't a particularly helpful contribution.
  23. X@V!3R

    X@V!3R Member

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    Bump.

    A higher salary cap (i.e. team payroll) is a prerequisite for making MLS 3.0 a reality and I don't see a substantial increase (on the order of 50%) in this area happening until significantly more lucrative TV deals are reached.
  24. The Green Mushroom

    The Green Mushroom Member

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    As my serious post, I want to ask this question.

    The league seems to be doing quite well now, as far as I can tell. Obviously it is not perfect. But aside from maybe adding a small number of expansion teams in useful markets, is there anything that the league MUST do to continue to be successful?

    In other words, can MLS be a successful league with 19-30 teams playing at near capacity in reasonable sized stadiums with a dedicated fan base buying tickets and watching the games on TV? Or does success have to mean playing in NFL sized stadiums before packed houses with seven figure TV audiences?
  25. HailtotheKing

    HailtotheKing Member+

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    I do love the league, genuinely. I also say "the MLS."

    I also got my minor in English and taught English/Reading at the secondary education level (JR/HS).

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