As professional leagues lay off staff members, players continue to receive super contracts .
Super contracts keep reaching multiple players while leagues keep laying off members for lack of budget. / Photo: Pixabay
LatinAmerican Post| Juan Manuel Londoño
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Leer en español: Opinión: 2021 el año en que los supercontratos deben morir
Shortly after winning this year's World Series, the Los Angeles Dodgers organization began massive layoffs of its staff members. The Dodgers reported continuing losses this year, so much that they had to request a 35% salary reduction for members of their organization who were earning more than $ 75,000 in May of this year. 2020 has been difficult for everyone and it sure was not an easy decision for the Dodgers leadership to implement these salary cuts, much less these massive layoffs.
However, we also have to keep in mind that in July of this year, the Dodgers signed one of the largest contracts, not only in the history of baseball but in the entire sport. Mookie Betts, right fielder, signed a $ 365,000,000 12-year extension. This is the fourth juiciest contract in the history of the sport.
Where are the financial problems for the Dodgers then?
Economic inequality in sports organizations is a real problem that was under scrutiny this year. The hypocrisy of organizations like the Dodgers, which indulge in mass layoffs while signing ever-bigger millionaire contracts with their stars, is coming into question. The number of gigantic contracts that have been signed this year is unreal, considering the financial straits that have been imposed on the sport.
- On July 6, quarterback Patrick Mahomes signed a 12-year, $ 503 million contract with the Kansas City Chiefs. It is the most expensive contract in history.
- On December 15, Giannis Antetokoumpo, center of the Milwaukee Bucks, signed a 5-year extension for $ 228 million with his organization. It's the biggest contract in NBA history
It is important to remember that sports organizations are not just the stars. Sports scouts, fitness coaches, public relations, journalists, maintenance personnel and many more are often the ones that keep our favorite teams going.
Many of the people mentioned above have also experienced, and probably more strongly than athletes, the economic havoc caused by the pandemic.
There are many reasons why the super contract has to die. Causes talent leakage in small organizations. Increases inequality (and in the worst case, resentment) among teammates. But most importantly, organizations cannot abandon their little workers in favor of their superstars.
No great team is built with its players alone.