Wednesday, October 04, 2006

And now, for yet another potential cluster#$%&

We'll leave the growing GOP Implosion for a moment and look at something that could blow up in our faces right here in Memphis.

As most of you by now, a deal has been struck for Mike Heisley to sell his 70% stake in YOUR MEMPHIS GRIZZLIES to two ex-Duke hoopsters, Brian Davis and Christian Laettner, who, thankfully, backed off from the ridiculous notion that he was going to play for our hometown team THIS YEAR.

One of the local sports talk shows raised some interesting questions this afternoon when discussing the proposed deal.
Mssrs Rainey & Norsworthy wondered how this deal would go through when the two Dukies were only contributing $40 Million of the price, which reportedly approaches $300 million. The rest is to come from hedge fund investments and two people in New York who are as yet unnamed, but who Davis says would be instantly known if mentioned. OK, so why don't you mention them?

Fellas, we don't mean to jump down your throat as you arrive in town, but excuse us if we're just a tad skeptical about how this will work. Tell you what, go to Google and type in the phrase "Sidney Shlenker and The Pyramid". Read some of the articles and then understand why we might want to know a bit more about where your money is coming from. SOMEBODY has to be able to write a check for $40 Million if you lose it, and I'm betting the hedge fund lads won't do it more than once, which Rainey and Norsworthy pointed out as well.

I fully realize that the Godfather himself has to be made aware of who the principal money men are, and if he gives it an OK, I will breathe a sigh of relief. However, having watched as the Pyramid was built AND abandoned within the space of a dozen years, pardon us Memphians who would like a little more assurance than what we have that you have all the money you will need.

Why? Because you're going to need more than you think, fellows! This is a walk-up town filled with front-runners who will abandon your squad if it goes back to only winning 25-30 games a year. I know; I'm one of them. We are short on patience, long on advice and WE LIKE UPTEMPO BASKETBALL (Hint Hint, Mike!). We MIGHT put up with a losing team (no more than one or two game below .500 and only for one year) only if we know that things will improve the next year.

Other problem: some of your biggest fans can't afford to attend, even with the $5 SONIC SAVER seats, because they don't have cars and the buses run on poor schedules. Fortunately, you have GREAT corporate support from FedEx, AutoZone and others, so that will help somewhat.

All in all, guys, please remember than you can develop Downtown all you want, but you need people who can afford to live in the buildings that you build; in that, there is a SHORT supply, so you are forewarned.

I just want you to know what you're getting into, and you had better have ALL your ducks in a row, or this could be a disaster.

Otherwise, gentlemen, welcome to Memphis.

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