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League Restructure Thread (Merged Threads)


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20 hours ago, M j M said:

You can come up with alternatives as much as you want but it keeps missing the point. The game's problems are nothing to do with the current league structure.

Spot on. This thread is nearly 100 pages of fanciful ideas all missing one very important point. That the structure is not the problem!!! 

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29 minutes ago, Bod said:

The only time broadcasters are interested in the Grand Final is after a finish like last year or a Ben Flower incident. The fact Hull KR could be crowned Champions shows what's wrong with Rugby League.

You either have play offs or you don't. If you have play offs then you pick you top X clubs based on your cut off point. They have decided it is 6 so Hull KR have a shot at the title.

If you aren't going to give them a shot at the title then don't have play offs. The GF is around 25% of the RFL's annual income BTW so you are also harming the community game if you don't have play offs.

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2 hours ago, OriginalMrC said:

Spot on. This thread is nearly 100 pages of fanciful ideas all missing one very important point. That the structure is not the problem!!! 

Exactly. I just don't know what we as fans can do to stop this. The game's leadership has lost its mind because they seem destined to go for this insane proposal that I've not heard any support for from fans.

In my view fans - and indeed prospective fans - want a stable league format with a sensible number of teams and with none or as few as possible loop fixtures. They don't want Mickey Mouse formats of conferences or playing each other club three or four times.

We're presently at twelve for various reasons and ideally it would be 14 to lose the existing loops. That's not going to happen but there is no evidence at all that anybody wants a convoluted structure or yet more loop games.

I get that the lucky top ten will be able to slice their pie with nine rather than eleven others but the damage this proposal will do to the game, compounding the impact of the massive instability in formats of the past twelve years, is incalculable.

We need to just stop it, leave the format alone and focus on real problems like fan engagement, player numbers, standards of play, transparency and on and off-field excitement. This goes counter to most of those and doesn't address the rest.

I  just can't see who out there is saying, "this is madness, stop it!" Sadler is supposed to be the sport's most senior journalist and yet he's too busy coming up with his own versions of insanity.

In summary:

Nobody wants what they are proposing.

The massive number of changes in recent years have already fuelled disengagement

The suggested restructure does nothing at all to address the issues the sport faces.

Someone has to speak up before it's too late.

Edited by M j M
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  If you went back to a closed shop SL as in the past.It would deny teams like KR who have moved between divisions with promotion the ambition to improve as they have done this season.They have been a breath of fresh air to SL.with their improved performances on and off the field.

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3 minutes ago, sentoffagain2 said:

  If you went back to a closed shop SL as in the past.It would deny teams like KR who have moved between divisions with promotion the ambition to improve as they have done this season.They have been a breath of fresh air to SL.with their improved performances on and off the field.

Since Hull KR moved divisions they have built a new stand, improved match day and other experiences and have had regular crowds between 7-10k over the last 15 years. Why would the shop be closed to them in the first phase of that? Who would have a stronger case?

They same goes for all those clubs in the 9-16 brackets, they are either improving their whole club with tangible results or not (and just ####ing away central funds on player salaries).

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2 minutes ago, Scubby said:

Since Hull KR moved divisions they have built a new stand, improved match day and other experiences and have had regular crowds between 7-10k over the last 15 years. Why would the shop be closed to them in the first phase of that? Who would have a stronger case?

They same goes for all those clubs in the 9-16 brackets, they are either improving their whole club with tangible results or not (and just ####ing away central funds on player salaries).

Think he's saying it prevents the next club like Hull KR to do what they've done. 

I was born to run a club like this. Number 1, I do not spook easily, and those who think I do, are wasting their time, with their surprise attacks.

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FWIW I think structure is part of the problem for two reasons:

1. The tedium of loop fixtures. It seriously devalues the "big" games like the Hull Derby, Saints/Wigan, Wigan/Leeds etc.

2. The present structure allows far too many clubs to just go through the motions, collecting the Sky money and not really doing anything to either promote the sport or improve their facilities. Much less get out there and win business to increase commercial revenue.  We all know who these clubs are. Would the product be any worse if they were replaced by any of the leading championship clubs? As it stands there's a huge bottle neck at one up, one down.  These zombie clubs can potentially hang around for years. New blood and new energy is vital imho. 

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41 minutes ago, David Shepherd said:

FWIW I think structure is part of the problem for two reasons:

1. The tedium of loop fixtures. It seriously devalues the "big" games like the Hull Derby, Saints/Wigan, Wigan/Leeds etc.

2. The present structure allows far too many clubs to just go through the motions, collecting the Sky money and not really doing anything to either promote the sport or improve their facilities. Much less get out there and win business to increase commercial revenue.  We all know who these clubs are. Would the product be any worse if they were replaced by any of the leading championship clubs? As it stands there's a huge bottle neck at one up, one down.  These zombie clubs can potentially hang around for years. New blood and new energy is vital imho. 

The ideal is 14 teams. We are where we are for now at twelve. But the proposal is for ten teams and even more loops. Nobody wants this but it's going to happen unless someone makes them stop!

I also think this stuff about "zombie clubs" and "going through the motions" and "hanging around" in Super League is just rubbish and further divides the game between supporters of clubs who for some reason (typically short-term luck or historical fortune or the largesse of one man) have struck it lucky, and The Rest. There is a tendency to literally wish death on unfashionable Rugby League clubs to suit myriad agendas. It's just so dumb and short-sighted and arrogant.

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3 hours ago, M j M said:

The ideal is 14 teams. We are where we are for now at twelve. But the proposal is for ten teams and even more loops. Nobody wants this but it's going to happen unless someone makes them stop!

I also think this stuff about "zombie clubs" and "going through the motions" and "hanging around" in Super League is just rubbish and further divides the game between supporters of clubs who for some reason (typically short-term luck or historical fortune or the largesse of one man) have struck it lucky, and The Rest. There is a tendency to literally wish death on unfashionable Rugby League clubs to suit myriad agendas. It's just so dumb and short-sighted and arrogant.

Couldn't agree more about the zombie clubs point. 

All leagues have stronger clubs and weaker clubs. It's hardly new news or a big issue. 

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36 minutes ago, Dave T said:

Couldn't agree more about the zombie clubs point. 

All leagues have stronger clubs and weaker clubs. It's hardly new news or a big issue. 

It is up to the competition whether to accept standards of those 'zombie clubs'. If they don't feel threatened there is no reason for them to change.

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2 minutes ago, Scubby said:

It is up to the competition whether to accept standards of those 'zombie clubs'. If they don't feel threatened there is no reason for them to change.

Threat of relegation should be enough. Maybe it should be more than one club down. Especially if we went up to 14 teams

also a sliding scale of central funding should be more apparent and the lower down you finish should hit your money

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7 hours ago, Bod said:

The only time broadcasters are interested in the Grand Final is after a finish like last year or a Ben Flower incident. The fact Hull KR could be crowned Champions shows what's wrong with Rugby League.

To be honest I’m just a lowly league 1 supporter who enjoyed our dramatic win yesterday. I used to watch sky super league matches all the time, now the only ones I watch involve Hull KR. Tony Smith has got them playing an exciting brand of rugby that I enjoy watching, would love to see them crowned champions! 

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OK, so where am I with this malarkey?

It is clear that no structure can be panacea of all ills of RL in the northern hemisphere.

What it can do though is act as a mechanism to enable that growth.

The current system and the basic 2x10 have many problems which stunt development. There are simply not enough teams in the top flight to retain wider interest and loop fixtures are an absolute turn off.

A top 10 SL1 with loop fixtures would be a zero sum game with diminishing input and could be the beginning of the end of professional RL. SL2 would be no more than a reduced and rebranded championship.

It seems likely that there would be only 8 English teams in SL1, so a good proportion of the games would be played in France. Who would televise these?

The current cliff-edge threat of relegation is debilitating for 1/3 of the league every season.

Anyway, at the risk of repeating myself. I would support 2 conferences of 10, but I don't believe the current playing standards are close enough to make 2 equal groups.

So, I would have 2-tiered conferences with each playing home and away in their own conference and 5 home 5 away from the other conference. (18 + 10 =28 games).

The important thing is that this is one competition, so at least in theory, however unlikely, any team from the 20 could win it at the start of the season.

For the Play-offs, the top 4 could have a bye in the first round then 5-12 (i.e. including the top 2 of SL2 would play an elimination round (5v12, 6v11 etc). After that it would be highest placed at home against lowest place etc. straight knock-out. So, the top 4 would all be at home in the second round.

The bottom 2 of SL1 would be relegated and replaced by the top 2 of SL2. The bottom 2 clubs (19th & 20th) would undergo a review with recommendations of how to improve. If there are applications to join SL2 these would be considered on a franchising type basis in comparison with the clubs under review.

The money (assuming £20M) would be distributed on a sliding scale in 3 chunks, an in initial distribution of £500k to each team, a second tranche depending on finishing position and a third on play-off games won.

0sW2Stt.png

So, for the current league positions it would look like above.

If they finished in the same positions and play-offs all went to form each team would receive the total in the right column.

Assuming it finished in the same order, if Catalans were to win the league leaders' and GF they'd receive a total of £1,826,673, but the amounts are mix and match, so if St Helens were to beat Catalans in the GF they'd receive £1,796,669 and Catalans £1,660,001.

If Salford were to beat Hull KR in their play-off game they'd receive £1,026,689

It would be possible (unlikely that 9th or 10th could win the GF and get relegated in the same year, although this may a good publicity story, it could be removed with a stroke of a pen by having a rule that grand-finalists can't be relegated.

What it allows is the lower placed clubs to progress at their own pace and test themselves against the top teams. If someone wanted to invest heavily in one year, they could win the whole competition, or at least get well up the prize distribution.
It would also encourage a big investor to bring a new team into the competition with little risk.

Relegation from SL1 would not be a cliff edge, although potentially reduce income from playing more lower teams, although they would likely be a winning team.

Clearly, team budgeting would be difficult, but should be possible.

 

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1 hour ago, Wholly Trinity said:

OK, so where am I with this malarkey?

It is clear that no structure can be panacea of all ills of RL in the northern hemisphere.

What it can do though is act as a mechanism to enable that growth.

The current system and the basic 2x10 have many problems which stunt development. There are simply not enough teams in the top flight to retain wider interest and loop fixtures are an absolute turn off.

A top 10 SL1 with loop fixtures would be a zero sum game with diminishing input and could be the beginning of the end of professional RL. SL2 would be no more than a reduced and rebranded championship.

It seems likely that there would be only 8 English teams in SL1, so a good proportion of the games would be played in France. Who would televise these?

The current cliff-edge threat of relegation is debilitating for 1/3 of the league every season.

Anyway, at the risk of repeating myself. I would support 2 conferences of 10, but I don't believe the current playing standards are close enough to make 2 equal groups.

So, I would have 2-tiered conferences with each playing home and away in their own conference and 5 home 5 away from the other conference. (18 + 10 =28 games).

The important thing is that this is one competition, so at least in theory, however unlikely, any team from the 20 could win it at the start of the season.

For the Play-offs, the top 4 could have a bye in the first round then 5-12 (i.e. including the top 2 of SL2 would play an elimination round (5v12, 6v11 etc). After that it would be highest placed at home against lowest place etc. straight knock-out. So, the top 4 would all be at home in the second round.

The bottom 2 of SL1 would be relegated and replaced by the top 2 of SL2. The bottom 2 clubs (19th & 20th) would undergo a review with recommendations of how to improve. If there are applications to join SL2 these would be considered on a franchising type basis in comparison with the clubs under review.

The money (assuming £20M) would be distributed on a sliding scale in 3 chunks, an in initial distribution of £500k to each team, a second tranche depending on finishing position and a third on play-off games won.

0sW2Stt.png

So, for the current league positions it would look like above.

If they finished in the same positions and play-offs all went to form each team would receive the total in the right column.

Assuming it finished in the same order, if Catalans were to win the league leaders' and GF they'd receive a total of £1,826,673, but the amounts are mix and match, so if St Helens were to beat Catalans in the GF they'd receive £1,796,669 and Catalans £1,660,001.

If Salford were to beat Hull KR in their play-off game they'd receive £1,026,689

It would be possible (unlikely that 9th or 10th could win the GF and get relegated in the same year, although this may a good publicity story, it could be removed with a stroke of a pen by having a rule that grand-finalists can't be relegated.

What it allows is the lower placed clubs to progress at their own pace and test themselves against the top teams. If someone wanted to invest heavily in one year, they could win the whole competition, or at least get well up the prize distribution.
It would also encourage a big investor to bring a new team into the competition with little risk.

Relegation from SL1 would not be a cliff edge, although potentially reduce income from playing more lower teams, although they would likely be a winning team.

Clearly, team budgeting would be difficult, but should be possible.

 

I just don't see how such a model will work. All it does is dumb down standards considerably when it comes to SL and even 5th place only gets 2/3rds the funding than they get now. Its just more race to the bottom stuff.

Even with that two conferences does not work if teams in one conference are expected to compete with teams getting £1 million more. We have a huge gulf in SL as is on equal funding. That gulf between the top 5 and everyone else will just widen considerably under a model like this.

There is simply not 20 strong enough clubs to try and bring everyone along like this and the game cannot afford it. Even the maths don't add up as the RFL will be getting £5 million and that is before the other 16 clubs get a penny. In my opinion ideas that revolve around propping up full time clubs in a lower league competition that brings in no TV income are just crazy and a luxury the game cant afford.

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3 minutes ago, Damien said:

I just don't see how such a model will work. All it does is dumb down standards considerably when it comes to SL and even 5th place only gets 2/3rds the funding than they get now. Its just more race to the bottom stuff.

Even with that two conferences does not work if teams in one conference are expected to compete with teams getting £1 million more. We have a huge gulf in SL as is on equal funding. That gulf between the top 5 and everyone else will just widen considerably under a model like this.

There is simply not 20 strong enough clubs to try and bring everyone along like this and the game cannot afford it. Even the maths don't add up as the RFL will be getting £5 million and that is before the other 16 clubs get a penny. In my opinion ideas that revolve around propping up full time clubs in a lower league competition that brings in no TV income are just crazy and a luxury the game cant afford.

We are spending far too much time essentially finding a way for Andrew Ridgely to be part of George Michael's evolution. 

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1 hour ago, Damien said:

I just don't see how such a model will work. All it does is dumb down standards considerably when it comes to SL and even 5th place only gets 2/3rds the funding than they get now. Its just more race to the bottom stuff.

Even with that two conferences does not work if teams in one conference are expected to compete with teams getting £1 million more. We have a huge gulf in SL as is on equal funding. That gulf between the top 5 and everyone else will just widen considerably under a model like this.

There is simply not 20 strong enough clubs to try and bring everyone along like this and the game cannot afford it. Even the maths don't add up as the RFL will be getting £5 million and that is before the other 16 clubs get a penny. In my opinion ideas that revolve around propping up full time clubs in a lower league competition that brings in no TV income are just crazy and a luxury the game cant afford.

So how do you think the money should be split? 

The deal is 30% down so the status quo would leave everyone on 2/3 of what they currently get. 

The figures are only to exemplify the system. They could be rejigged to make it closer/more even spread.  

I'm not sure of the actual figures but wasn't it £25m - £5m for the rfl?

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1 hour ago, Damien said:

In my opinion ideas that revolve around propping up full time clubs in a lower league competition that brings in no TV income are just crazy and a luxury the game cant afford.

This. Absolutely this. It’s an illusion that the game can afford to do this and that some of the clubs can be full time. We will never bridge the gap through the use of centralised funds. All it has done is damage the game at the top end.

Edited by GeordieSaint
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23 hours ago, David Shepherd said:

FWIW I think structure is part of the problem for two reasons:

1. The tedium of loop fixtures. It seriously devalues the "big" games like the Hull Derby, Saints/Wigan, Wigan/Leeds etc.

2. The present structure allows far too many clubs to just go through the motions, collecting the Sky money and not really doing anything to either promote the sport or improve their facilities. Much less get out there and win business to increase commercial revenue.  We all know who these clubs are. Would the product be any worse if they were replaced by any of the leading championship clubs? As it stands there's a huge bottle neck at one up, one down.  These zombie clubs can potentially hang around for years. New blood and new energy is vital imho. 

Sorry David I think the consensus does not support this.

The system is rigged to favour six big clubs at the expense of the rest. 

"For the few, not the many" to paraphrase Shelley.

Its English society to a tee. An elite hoarding the resources, acting to defend their privilege and contriving scenarios and structures that further enhance the unfairness. 

RL's structural inequalities will always be there, but SL and this ten x ten will re-enforce the imbalance further and for all their endeavours or not, those excluded from the Big Six can do very little to markedly improve themselves on a sustained basis. 

This does not have to be like this. The start I think is for all right thinking supporters to oppose this ten x ten notion, point out why and say what we would prefer.

For our voice is crucial. Without fans, rugby league is nothing.

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3 hours ago, Wholly Trinity said:

OK, so where am I with this malarkey?

It is clear that no structure can be panacea of all ills of RL in the northern hemisphere.

What it can do though is act as a mechanism to enable that growth.

The current system and the basic 2x10 have many problems which stunt development. There are simply not enough teams in the top flight to retain wider interest and loop fixtures are an absolute turn off.

A top 10 SL1 with loop fixtures would be a zero sum game with diminishing input and could be the beginning of the end of professional RL. SL2 would be no more than a reduced and rebranded championship.

It seems likely that there would be only 8 English teams in SL1, so a good proportion of the games would be played in France. Who would televise these?

The current cliff-edge threat of relegation is debilitating for 1/3 of the league every season.

Anyway, at the risk of repeating myself. I would support 2 conferences of 10, but I don't believe the current playing standards are close enough to make 2 equal groups.

So, I would have 2-tiered conferences with each playing home and away in their own conference and 5 home 5 away from the other conference. (18 + 10 =28 games).

The important thing is that this is one competition, so at least in theory, however unlikely, any team from the 20 could win it at the start of the season.

For the Play-offs, the top 4 could have a bye in the first round then 5-12 (i.e. including the top 2 of SL2 would play an elimination round (5v12, 6v11 etc). After that it would be highest placed at home against lowest place etc. straight knock-out. So, the top 4 would all be at home in the second round.

The bottom 2 of SL1 would be relegated and replaced by the top 2 of SL2. The bottom 2 clubs (19th & 20th) would undergo a review with recommendations of how to improve. If there are applications to join SL2 these would be considered on a franchising type basis in comparison with the clubs under review.

The money (assuming £20M) would be distributed on a sliding scale in 3 chunks, an in initial distribution of £500k to each team, a second tranche depending on finishing position and a third on play-off games won.

0sW2Stt.png

So, for the current league positions it would look like above.

If they finished in the same positions and play-offs all went to form each team would receive the total in the right column.

Assuming it finished in the same order, if Catalans were to win the league leaders' and GF they'd receive a total of £1,826,673, but the amounts are mix and match, so if St Helens were to beat Catalans in the GF they'd receive £1,796,669 and Catalans £1,660,001.

If Salford were to beat Hull KR in their play-off game they'd receive £1,026,689

It would be possible (unlikely that 9th or 10th could win the GF and get relegated in the same year, although this may a good publicity story, it could be removed with a stroke of a pen by having a rule that grand-finalists can't be relegated.

What it allows is the lower placed clubs to progress at their own pace and test themselves against the top teams. If someone wanted to invest heavily in one year, they could win the whole competition, or at least get well up the prize distribution.
It would also encourage a big investor to bring a new team into the competition with little risk.

Relegation from SL1 would not be a cliff edge, although potentially reduce income from playing more lower teams, although they would likely be a winning team.

Clearly, team budgeting would be difficult, but should be possible.

 

I will say well done for the amount to thought, so I give it a like.

 

However I think this would merely re-enforce the imbalances between the bigger clubs and the rest if it was graded. 

We need to develop more revenue streams for RL. The gap between the Big Six needs to be narrowed, not by reducing them, but enhancing the others. 

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  • 3 weeks later...
On 28/09/2021 at 13:44, idrewthehaggis said:

I will say well done for the amount to thought, so I give it a like.

 

However I think this would merely re-enforce the imbalances between the bigger clubs and the rest if it was graded. 

We need to develop more revenue streams for RL. The gap between the Big Six needs to be narrowed, not by reducing them, but enhancing the others. 

Still think Martyn Saddler's plan was best

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https://www.wakefieldexpress.co.uk/sport/rugby-league/reduced-broadcast-deal-set-to-leave-wakefield-trinity-ps450000-worse-off-3401664

Reality bites. This is next season still with 12 teams. 

Assuming they follow through with SL1/2 2×10 and their promise of reducing the cliff edge of demotion, how can it be possible to divide the reduced pot to support more full-time professional teams? 

In short, they can't. Clubs are now desperate in the extreme to increase and diversify income streams... it could get messy. It could end the sport as a viable professional game in the northern hemisphere.

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13 minutes ago, Wholly Trinity said:

https://www.wakefieldexpress.co.uk/sport/rugby-league/reduced-broadcast-deal-set-to-leave-wakefield-trinity-ps450000-worse-off-3401664

Reality bites. This is next season still with 12 teams. 

Assuming they follow through with SL1/2 2×10 and their promise of reducing the cliff edge of demotion, how can it be possible to divide the reduced pot to support more full-time professional teams? 

In short, they can't. Clubs are now desperate in the extreme to increase and diversify income streams... it could get messy. It could end the sport as a viable professional game in the northern hemisphere.

I don´t agree with the idea of 500,000 for Championship clubs. Should be a part time league bar a team that wants to make it to SL in which case they should run full time. For Wakey, clawing that near 500,000 back is tough but that´s what makes that 3g pitch so vital. 

Not only does it generate rev on it´s own but it´s the wider community that it also brings in , in terms of thousands more people a year being exposed to the ground and the club, which in turn can be used to gain more money from sponsors and eyeballs due to increased footfall. Plus makes it easier to grow crowds with having more chances to advertise your product to people. 

Even if they are using it for 7 a side football, that´s 1000´s more visitors a years buying drinks after the game being exposed to the stadium. Wakey need a 3g pitch and to get their average above 6000 or it is hard to see them being part of a thriving SL in the future. 

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4 minutes ago, ShropshireBull said:

I don´t agree with the idea of 500,000 for Championship clubs. Should be a part time league bar a team that wants to make it to SL in which case they should run full time. For Wakey, clawing that near 500,000 back is tough but that´s what makes that 3g pitch so vital. 

Not only does it generate rev on it´s own but it´s the wider community that it also brings in , in terms of thousands more people a year being exposed to the ground and the club, which in turn can be used to gain more money from sponsors and eyeballs due to increased footfall. Plus makes it easier to grow crowds with having more chances to advertise your product to people. 

Even if they are using it for 7 a side football, that´s 1000´s more visitors a years buying drinks after the game being exposed to the stadium. Wakey need a 3g pitch and to get their average above 6000 or it is hard to see them being part of a thriving SL in the future. 

Still awaiting planning permission for the enabling development for the new East stand and facilities which will bring in income. Still not nailed on given the history of the developer. Without this, top flight survival is in serious doubt. 

When you talk of SL & Championship, how many teams are expecting in each come 2023?

At least the new floodlights are finished and the 4g pitch seems to be funded elsewhere. 

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3 minutes ago, Wholly Trinity said:

Still awaiting planning permission for the enabling development for the new East stand and facilities which will bring in income. Still not nailed on given the history of the developer. Without this, top flight survival is in serious doubt. 

When you talk of SL & Championship, how many teams are expecting in each come 2023?

At least the new floodlights are finished and the 4g pitch seems to be funded elsewhere. 

Pitch at least gets people in. Will make a huge difference in nothing else than making the club feel as if it is a living breathing club rather than just existing every fortnight. 

I think that a 2 10´s is the dumbest idea on earth. Think we should be moving towards 14 SL with less central funding for all at all levels. I wouldn´t be giving anyone in Champ more than 100,000 quid. So the idea of 500,000 to each team in the champ who generate zero in TV revenue is lunacy and seems only designed to protect the weakest commercial SL teams and effectively bribe them off. 

Edited by ShropshireBull
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