Getting sick of greed in pro sports
“Greed, for lack of a better word, is good. Greed is right. Greed works.”
What the famous Gordon Gekko character, played by Michael Douglas in the classic 1987 film “Wall Street,” tries to sell everyone is a bunch of hogwash.
In actuality, greed is bad. Greed is wrong. Greed doesn’t work. It’s selfish, inhumane and even sickening.
Greed also is the reason why I find it harder and harder to be a fan of professional sports these days.
It’s all about the Benjamins.
Not for everyone, of course. But for so many folks involved in pro sports, money is all that really matters.
And I’m sick of it.
So, these guys can take their ball and go home for all I care.
One thing I’ve come to realize during the coronavirus pandemic is what truly matters in life — family, friends, neighbors, helping one another and being there for each other.
It’s been interesting to take a giant step back, slow down, change perspective and come to the conclusion that a lot of things that really mattered to me three months ago simply don’t carry as much weight any longer.
I’ve been a sports fan my entire life. Almost all sports (sorry, soccer, you will never win me over.) My kids play sports. I’m usually their coach. I love teaching them and other youngsters how to play, how to work hard, how to stay focused.
I’m not anti-sports, by any means.
But I am anti-greed. And it’s been off-putting, to say the least, seeing all the financial bickering going back and forth in pro sports this spring, most notably in baseball.
Look, I don’t care whose side you’re on — either the millionaire players or the billionaire owners. They all live in their own little fantasy worlds, where the money they’re fighting over is INSANE compared to the real-world problems we are facing in society.
I have spent the better part of my adult life covering minor league baseball. Many of you know this already, but for those who don’t: Most Curve players make less than $10,000 a year to play baseball.
The vast majority of minor leaguers make far below the poverty level. They play the game because they love it. They are torn apart when they can no longer play. They would give anything to extend their careers for as long as possible in the minors, even though they receive pauper wages.
But something happens to these guys when they get to the majors.
The same dudes who made less than $10,000 a year all of a sudden get involved in a union that would have you believe their multi-million dollar salary isn’t fair.
It warps the mind.
The owners are guilty, too. They make tons of money off the players’ efforts, and they’re greedy because they want to keep most of the profits. Then again, isn’t that how pretty much every company in the world operates?
I don’t know who’s right in all this. And I don’t care. They’re all a bunch of spoiled rich folks fighting over millions, while the real unemployment rate is above 20 percent and the global economy is trying to avoid falling into a depression.
It’s such a horrendous look.
I love the game of baseball and hope to see MLB return this year. But if it doesn’t, I can honestly tell you that it won’t be a huge ordeal in my life.
I’ll still be out at a local ballfield somewhere playing baseball with my son and his friends, all of whom will be there because they want to have fun playing a kid’s game.
Not because of money and greed.
Cory Giger can be reached at firstname.lastname@example.org.