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will Wondo be rewarded with DP status he so richly deserves?

Discussion in 'San Jose Earthquakes' started by Quakes05, Jan 5, 2013.

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  1. Quakes05

    Quakes05 Member

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    No one has done more to return our team to respectability and no one has played with more heart, passion and commitment than our beloved Chris Wondolowski. Imagine where we would be without his skill, leadership and goal scoring prowess. He is the heart and soul of this team and he deserves the status, compensation and recognition that comes with DP status.

    Maybe discussions are underway, maybe he now has an agent...who knows? All I know is, Chris Wondolowski represents everything San Jose Earthquakes fans look for in a top player and we need to move heaven and earth to keep him happy, right here in San Jose.

    I'd like to see us bring in a top class midfielder too...maybe a second DP? I understand stadium costs will be high but we need to be thinking big market and we need to roll into our new digs having made a serious effort to de-throne LA.

    So, we need to build on our momentum from this past season and make a few quality player aquisitions. Has anyone heard anything so far?
     


  2. Quakes05

    Quakes05 Member

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  3. alexiskool1991

    alexiskool1991 Member

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    If DeRo couldn't get on last year and also this season, I don't think there's much hope for wondo. I hope he gets it.
     
  4. Quakes05

    Quakes05 Member

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    http://www.examiner.com/article/fifa-president-sepp-blatter-takes-swing-at-mls

    I hate to admit that Sepp Blatter is right on this. In many ways the league is growing, but then we've got the small ball clubs that aren't spending for quality. It was $3 million DP Robbie Keane that brought our last season to a crashing halt...we need to step up and keep pace with these guys. I'm not saying 3 DP's...but we need a quality midfield player, and we have to make Wondo a DP. We also need a replacement defender for Opara.

    A big name signing and a DP contract for Wondo, and the Quakes marketing team will be rolling. And the soccer world will know that SJ is for real.
     


  5. lurking

    lurking Member+

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    Wondo probably wont get a DP contract until he does something with the national team. DP contracts arent just about on field performance, they are about off the field marketability. Without being a US MNT "name" player, its hard to justify paying him more then the league based salary max.

    As for not signing a DP, there is no question we will not go for a 3 million dollar DP without our own stadium. That is in part because its hard to sell that type of free agent on Buck Shaw's facilities, and in part because Buck Shaw limits the team's ability to recover that amount through marketing of the player. You can only squeeze so much revenue out of buck shaw.
     
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  6. Quakes05

    Quakes05 Member

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    Excellent points. And while I agree with the revenue limitations associated with the tiny confines of
    Buck Shaw, I don't think a DP necessarily needs that national
    team experience. What he's done over the past three seasons is simply phenomenal...it will be very disheartening I'm sure, for Chris and Quakes fans, if he's not properly recognized and paid, at this point. Plus, making him a DP frees up cash under the cap, which would be helpful.
    His salary last year was rock bottom so you know many other teams are licking
    their chops at the prospect of luring him away. Our FO has to make sure he's happy here, bottom line, whatever it takes.
     
  7. lurking

    lurking Member+

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    Its not about national team experience, its about national team marketability. While you can market Wondo to MLS fans, thats really preaching to the choir. What you need from a marketing standpoint on DPs are players who can be marketed to soccer fans with limited MLS exposure. The players they know are A) foreign stars and B) USMNT players.
     
  8. Quakes05

    Quakes05 Member

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    I get your point but I think his stock has gone way up and he's quite marketable now based on his league performance. Plus, look at our last DP...marketability didn't seem to be a factor there, nor talent apparently. Wondo has fully earned it IMO, and since I doubt nat team experience is a requirement, it really is a decision teams can make based on any aspect of a players career.
     
  9. JazzyJ

    JazzyJ BigSoccer Supporter

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    Yeah, off the field marketability, you mean like Geovanni? I don't think USMNT should be a factor. Wondo has outperformed just about every other player in MLS over the last 3-year period, including the best ever USMNT player, and tied the league goal-scoring record last year. Yes, you could probably get away with not giving him a DP contract because he's a nice guy who is not going to make check-writing gestures and throw a fit, and start trialing in Europe. But I would do it because it's the right thing to do. Yes, it's a business, blah, blah. But this is about soul, and soul builds the club, and the business is nothing w/o the club.

    I don't think you have to box yourself into the current conditions of the team, i.e. tie yourself to the yearly ledger line. You might sign a $3 million DP in a poor stadium to start building the brand to create momentum for when you do move. It would be an investment in the brand. But OTOH an argument against doing it is that you may want a "big bang" for the stadium opening, so you may want to hold onto your cards.
     
  10. lurking

    lurking Member+

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    Geovanni was more marketable to non-mls fans then Wondo is. Also keep in mind how long Geo lasted.

    Theyve given Wondo raises for multiple years in a row, despite the fact he has years left on his contract. He isnt being maltreated here. The best reascon I can think of giving Wondo a low DP salary is to put him on a DP cap hit, which may be less then his current salary (I think DPs hit the cap at 330k, below the league max). Make Wondo a DP from a fan's perspective is great, but from the team's perspective making a guy whose already locked in for years on a non DP salary, where a large portion of the DP falls directly on the club, isnt something you do because it would be nice.

    I think if you are largely self financing a stadium you do. At this point you run the team on the cheap... competitively, but on the cheap, because you dont want to be hemoraghing money right now. When you double your potential ticket sales, and open up luxury box revenues, you really open up the potential of game day revenue. A DP can also help you sign stadium naming rights and corporate sponsorships that are much easier to do when your also not playing at a small college stadium. You can justify the expense of a DP in that environment.. but really only that environment.

    And building a brand now is nice, but keep in mind that if you attact attention to the team now amongst soccer but non MLS fans, you are also selling them Buck Shaw. We know the reasons, and we know its temporary, but when you make the first impression with those fans, you want to make it strong. Its better not to try to make that pitch right now when your home ground screams minor league. Better I think to just market to MLS friendly fans, who will understand that Buck Shaw is temporary and love the game anyways.

    Buck Shaw is a nice little place to play with a great game day atmosphere, but it really limits what the team can do.
     
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  11. JazzyJ

    JazzyJ BigSoccer Supporter

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    Not sure about that. I'd bet that Wondo at this point has as much or more name recognition as Geovanni did for the "average" non-mls fan in the Bay Area. Geovanni didn't last because his performance didn't really justify his status as a DP. Wondo's, however, clearly does.

    You gave at least one good reason to make Wondo a DP - you could actually reduce his cap hit. And regarding the "nice" thing, it's not so much about "nice", but about "the right thing to do". The richer the soul, the richer the club. The richer the club, the richer the business surrounding the club. Until recently I believe, Barcelona refused corporate sponsorship. The right thing for the business from an inside-the-box perspective? Heck no. The right thing for the "soul" of the club? Heck yeah, and what a club it is. Same can be said of KC's Livestrong sponsorship, where they have effectively donated the stadium sponsorship to Livestrong (Armstrong's apparent soul-selling in his cycling career not withstanding :) ).

    Again, short term thinking. It doesn't matter if you "hemorrhaging money right now". In a business you have to have multi-year plans, and you often take short-term hits for the long term benefit. This idea that you can't have a DP in a crappy stadium is sort of the commonly accepted notion / truism; it is entirely inside-the-box thinking, and a creative business would just blow right through that if they thought it was the right thing to do.

    I'm not so sold on the need to bring in a $3 million DP this year for the Quakes. I just don't think that there's any law of nature or business that somehow precludes it according to the stadium you play in. My preference would be that they give Wondo a DP contract, for all the reasons above, and focus on getting more relatively undervalued guys who turn out to be great players, like Bernardez, Chavez, and Gordon.

    And BTW, in terms of team chemistry, I'd be willing to bet that no Quakes player would have the slightest problem with Wondo getting a DP contract. If you bring someone in with a big DP contract, and they turn out to be so-so, it may disrupt team chemistry. We've seen that happen in MLS before, the most egregious example being Becks, but then you have the DeRo, de Guzman thing, and check-writing gestures on the field and stuff like that.
     
  12. SJTillIDie

    SJTillIDie Member+

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    the only dp we need right now is Wondo not keane.

    i would rather re-sign dawkins, and bring in a good rotational/squad CM and CB than sign a geovanni-type dp.
     
  13. Quakes05

    Quakes05 Member

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    "need" is highly debatable. I guess it all depends on why we're in it. yes we need to make Wondo a DP...now. He has earned it, beyond any shadow of a doubt, and, if we don't, someone is picking him up with a serious money offer, which would be a complete disaster for our team.

    But if we are serious about making a run for the cup, we probably need another DP. LA had 3 players at $3 million each last season and a total player payroll of $17.5 million. We were at $3.5 million for our whole squad with Wondo pulling down a paltry $300k. If he became a $1 million DP, that puts us at $4.2 million, assuming other salaries remain roughly equal. But making him DP frees up a little cash under the cap, making it easier to hang on to players, plug holes, etc., if say we pushed our total player payroll to a far more realistic $4.5 (I'm asssuming salary cap is $3.5, someone can check me on this). More importantly, it gives Wondo what he absolutely deserves, proper recognition and compensation for his massive contribution to our club.

    So yeah, we need a second DP to seriously contend for the cup and to elevate our profile, but it might not be realistic given the financial constraints associated with playing in quaint, tiny little Buck Shaw, as lurking pointed out. But, hopefully $4.5m is doable for Lew.
     
  14. lurking

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    Fair points, but I wouldnt say Geo was a good DP signing anyways. If your going to DP, go big.

    Again, I fail to see how giving a player a raise in 3 consecutive off season when he was under a multi-year contract is somehow unfair to him. If we want to give him a 100k year raise every time he goes over 15 goals, fine, but I dont see how Wondo can sign a contract and then be wronged because we didnt give him a large enough raise when he delivered on his end. Yes, hes more productive then some other DPs, but no, thats not a reason we have to give him extravagant raises when hes already under contract for multiple years.

    You dont get a second chance to get a first impression. We are better off delaying signing a DP, who cannot pay off his salary with increased revenue in Buck Shaw, until we have a stadium that is "major league" in level. Yes there are times when you hemorrhage money in the short term for long term gains, but this is not the time.

    And I agree with this. I think the calculation may change for 2014, depending where the club is on the field. And no, I dont think just any DP would make sense. If in 2014 we had a chance to attract a chance to attract a name player like a Riquelme or a Kaka, and it made sense, then we should do that. Those players could attract fans that might be dismissive of MLS otherwise.
     
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  15. Quakes05

    Quakes05 Member

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    Technically, of course, you're right. He's under contract, and he's been getting increases, and hasn't been treated unfairly. But at this point he's vastly exceeded everyone's expectations and the whole landscape has changed...Wondo is on everyone's radar and I'm sure there are a ton of clubs, both here and abroad, that are willing to offer him a $1 million or more...and Wondo, who clearly loves San Jose and loves playing for this team, he's gotta be thinking "this is my time to cash in, I've earned it"...and who could blame him?

    So San Jose sticks to this contract mumbo jumbo, let's pay him a tiny portion of what he's worth because he signed a contract way before anyone knew his true potential, and then...*poof*...he's gone, playing in LA or some such nauseating scenario.

    The FO has to step up here or he's gone, that's my fear.
     
  16. QuietType

    QuietType Member+

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    61 goals in the past three years, not counting postseason or other games. That is ridiculous. What would other teams be paying for a guy who bags 20+ goals a season?? The FO has to know what they have here an at the very least pay out big for what Wondo has done for their franchise and the push to the next generation of the club in its new stadium.
     
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  17. JazzyJ

    JazzyJ BigSoccer Supporter

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    Not saying that the club has been unfair to Wondo. But after getting a raise for again getting golden boot type of goal production (after 2011), and then blowing that number out of the water the next year and tying a league record, and then the guy still does not even have an agent, it becomes about good faith, and just something unusual that sets the club apart from the dull "business" of soccer that every club plays.

    This is a special / rare thing that the Quakes have with Wondo. I just think that giving him a DP-level contract would make a statement. It's an opportunity to underline this special thing - sort of a celebration, one of the rare opportunities the club has to help further a legacy / story that goes beyond the business of soccer. And again I would argue that in building that legacy you are strengthening the club, which will wind up benefiting your business in the end. Let's say it costs $200-250k to take Wondo from a $350 guy to say a $500-600k DP contract. I think you'd wind up making that money back in spades by making this kind of statement.

    OTOH, if the team is good, and the DP is good, you might sell some more season tickets for next year, and make that first impression (a filled new stadium) that much better for everyone. Believe me, it will be no secret that the Quakes are building a new stadium next year. There will be all kinds of stuff about the new stadium at Buck Shaw.
     
  18. Quakes05

    Quakes05 Member

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    Exactly, what kind of team do we want in that new stadium, a small ball team content with mediocrity, or one that is hungry for titles and hell bent on doing what it takes to win? How they handle Wondo here will speak volumes about where this club is going on the field. Anything less than a million bucks a season at this point will be a travesty for player and fans.
     
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  19. Earthshaker

    Earthshaker BigSoccer Supporter

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    I agree that Wondo deserves a big pay increase, but, he isn't, *poof*, out of here, until his contract runs out, or we agree to deal him away prior to that. LA can say they will pay him $2million a year, but, he is still ours as long as he is under contract.
     
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  20. JazzyJ

    JazzyJ BigSoccer Supporter

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    I don't think they'll go to a million, but I predict that they will make him a DP (especially after they read my compelling posts in this thread :) ) at somewhere in the $500k-1 million range, probably on the lower to mid range of that.
     
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  21. Quakes05

    Quakes05 Member

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    I hope you're right about making him a DP...and hopefully it's closer to $1 million. We want him happy and thriving...simply put, he deserves it.
     
  22. Quakes05

    Quakes05 Member

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    I don't really know enough about his contract, or contracts in general, to know how binding this would be. But if they are lowballing him and he has big dollar offers from other clubs...that could spell problems since he is well within reason to expect DP money at this point. He has proved his value beyond any shadow of a doubt and the least I expect to see is that he's as happy as a clam, right here in SJ.
     
  23. Quakes05

    Quakes05 Member

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    Can someone tell me why/how (last year) LA had three DP's at $3 million each (Beckham, Keane & Donovan) but their total player payroll was $17.5 million. After the DP's, shouldn't the balance equal (no more than) the salary cap? I thought the salary cap was in the $3.5 million range...?
     
  24. Earthshaker

    Earthshaker BigSoccer Supporter

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    Only the first $350-$400k for a DP is counted toward the cap.
     
  25. JazzyJ

    JazzyJ BigSoccer Supporter

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    I think the current figure is $350k for over 23, and I think only $200k for 23 and under, and $150 for 20 and under - something like that.
     
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