I’ll admit to knowing nothing about the business of sports, but it strikes me that there is something fundamentally wrong with a business plan that requires a stadium to sell out for a professional game before local fans of that team are allowed to watch a game on TV.
If the owners have to resort to that kind of strong-arm tactic, then maybe they’re peddling something defective. Who wants to sit out in the elements freezing, or broiling, or getting rained on in seats that are so far away from the action that the players look like little dots on a mat, when high-def television allows the typical NFL aficionado to visually undress a cheerleader as if he were within smacking distance of her pompons?
Or maybe it’s just that the tickets and ancillary refreshments are too expensive to be worth leaving the security and comfort of one’s lounge chair for.
Since so much revenue is to be made from TV, anyway, why don’t they just scrap the crowds altogether, and have the teams play in a large white room over which a virtual stadium has been digitally superimposed, with a roaring sound track running in the background? Think of the money that will be saved by property-tax payers who won’t get shaken down by owners to finance new sports palaces.
It makes sense to me, but then I’m the kind of person who watches a PBS documentary during the Super Bowl.