Are NFL owners greedy or just billionaires doing business?

Feb 24, 2016, 11:31 AM | Updated: 11:33 am
“This is billionaires doing business,” Brock Huard said of NFL owners wrongly holding o...
"This is billionaires doing business," Brock Huard said of NFL owners wrongly holding on to ticket revenue. (AP)

The NFL’s leaders have been accused of some shady business over the last few years, from hiding concussion research to questionable punishment for domestic violence issues.

But stealing money from the players? Mike Salk couldn’t help but pose what is an inevitable question on 710 ESPN Seattle’s “Brock and Salk.”

“How scummy are the owners?” he asked. “How could they possibly be this scummy?”

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An arbiter recently ruled in favor of the NFL Player’s Association, which accused the NFL of holding on to roughly $120 million of ticket revenue that was supposed to be dispersed among the players over the last three years. The owners reportedly created an exemption that had the effect of keeping about $50 million in salary out of players’ pockets.

While Salk called the situation “crazy,” co-host Brock Huard was not surprised at all.

“This is no news,” he said. “This is billionaires doing business.”

Huard, a former NFL player, guessed that the players were probably more upset at their own union for letting it go all the way to the courts than they are the owners.

“It’s called moving the cheese and you do see this in business,” he said. “Anybody in the legal, development or big billion dollar professions, they know in all their corporations, ‘How can I move this little cheese around here so maybe this little auditor or executive doesn’t see this? How can I finagle some of these expenses?'”

Salk acknowledged that it’s difficult to choose who to feel sorry for when dealing with millionaires versus billionaires. But still…

“How could they possibly be so unforgivably greedy as to steal another $120 million?” he asked.

You can hear the conversation starting near the 26:20 mark of this podcast of “Brock and Salk.”

Brock and Salk podcast

Brock and Salk

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Are NFL owners greedy or just billionaires doing business?