Tag Archives: basketball

The Professor’s Thursday rant – AFL player wages & the grass roots

meWestern Bulldog’s President, Peter Gordon has it right when he suggests that more money should be invested in ‘grass roots’ football by the AFL. He said he feared (his word not mine) for the game’s future if significant (again his word) investment is not made at the grass roots level. He cited pressure on developing the next era of players due to inroads being made at junior level by soccer. He should know as he has recently chaired an AFL working group looking at junior participation rates in the west and north west of Melbourne.

Without those junior players and consequent supporters, the slice of the consumer market for the AFL will shrink and its ability to attract big dollars in media rights will be hampered.

Compare Gordon’s thoughts with those of AFLPA CEO Paul Marsh. Marsh thinks it is amazing that only one AFL player, Gary Ablett, made the top 50 of Business Review Weekly top sports earners. He has called for urgent attention to AFL player remuneration to remedy that situation.

Of course, an increase to player wages will reduce any ability for the AFL to invest in grass roots football.

Sportzfan Radio has long argued that professional sports people are well remunerated and gain an equitable portion of the pie already. Consider that the average AFL player receives at least $250,000 per year. In 2014, the average wage in Australia was almost $79,000.00 meaning AFL players, as a rule, are very well remunerated compared to the average Australian. That average wage increased by 2.3% from 2013. I have no argument in sporting people achieving parity with the rest of the Australian full time workforce and receiving the agreed Australian Bureau of Statistics annual increase. However, I perceive that Paul Marsh has a much higher increase in mind.

From where I sit, grass roots football is considerably under resourced and this state of affairs doesn’t look like it will be addressed anytime in the near future. The AFL and the AFLPA would do well to heed the words of Peter Gordon. Failure to do so will invariably lead to a reduction in participation (and supporter) rates and a consequent inability to demand the big figures in future media rights deals. One only needs to look at the NBL as a shining example of a sport that failed to invest at grass roots level and suffered a huge fall from grace with the media.

Perhaps Paul Marsh should should add his voice to those calling for greater investment in the grass roots. That would seem to be the best way for him to ensure he achieves his goal of increased wages for AFL players.

Friday musing – World Cup soccer & hockey, AFL…..

Chris Barwin HillsWell what a big week in sport!

Starting with the soccer World Cup, I must say my prognostication from about a month ago concerning Australia’s chances have come to fruition. I did suggest that while the Socceroos were unlikely to win a game, they would acquit themselves a lot better than most of the pundits and the public were expecting. As it stands after two games we have been highly competitive and very unlucky not to have secured a point from either game. The table for Group B at the moment has the 59th ranked Australian team ahead of the 1st ranked Spanish team. Not a bad result in that group. Save for Tim Cahill, who is not really a striker, we have lacked a world class finisher with several chances not being put in the back of the net. It is a bit of a shame that Robbie Kruse has been injured, while not being top shelf, he is still probably Australia’s best man up front. Hopefully he will be fit for the Asian Cup. It would be great to secure a draw or better against Spain.

Great to see Patty Mills and Aaron Baynes being a part of the NBA championship winning San Antonio Spurs. Mills really made a contribution and is now on the radar for several big NBA franchises. I read during the week that he only secured an AIS scholarship when Scott Pendelbury knocked it back. Who knows what might have 954743-patty-millshappened if he did not get that opportunity. He could be playing for the Sydney Swans!

Other Australians to be successful at the highest level this week were the Kookaburras, who beat the Netherlands easily in the World Cup of hockey. I am not a big hockey fan, but those that love the sport, really love it. It always good to see Aussies successful even if it is an area that you don’t have a great deal of interest.

The Essendon supplements saga is dominating the airwaves again and while I do not want to spend too much time on it, there was one comment that I could not resist responding to. On Saturday night Sam Lane confirmed that she had seen one of the show cause notices served on the Essendon players. Luke Darcy then asked her if she would take the six months that was offered. She responded in the affirmative. How can she possibly put herself in the shoes of the Essendon players and make judgement based on a “show cause” notice! It beggars belief. When asked the same question by Bryan Taylor later in the show she was a bit more circumspect, but if this type of dribble continues how are the Essendon players and the club going to get a decent hearing in the court of public opinion. Don’t forget that last year Jobe Watson was persecuted for his revelation that he may have been administered AOD9604. ASADA have now confirmed that this preparation only became banned after April 2013. Have any of his persecutors like Tim Lane (Sam’s father) apologised to him? I think not.

I was also bemused that Collingwood played the Western Bulldogs at Etihad as a home game and conversely, Essendon played Melbourne at the MCG as their home game. As fate would have it, both “home” sides lost. I am not suggesting that this issue cost Essendon the game on Sunday evening, the Dees did very well and how the Bombers let the last goal through means that their lapse against Hawthorn earlier in the year has not improved their capacity to think under pressure.

Have a great weekend.

Friday musing – NFL, Super Bowl, NBA, Essendon FC, cricket……

Chris Barwin HillsNot being a big American sports fan I have not seen a lot of sport in my two and a half weeks in Hawaii, but I was there for the Super Bowl. My daughter and I went to a bar on Maui and watched the game from just before half time. While being seated by the manager I enquired as to whom I should be supporting and I was assured I should be on the Seahawks. The bar seemed to be evenly divided between the Denver fans, who were very quiet and the Seattle fans who were a little more excited with plenty of Sea-Hawk chants. I enjoyed the game, however, the advertisements and the entertainment seemed to go for a lot longer than the actual playing time. My daughter also enjoyed the game and the advertisements! I think the game was an endorsement for the maxim that a good defence will usually defeat a good offence.

My other sporting observation from my time in Hawaii was the saturation coverage of basketball. It did not seem to matter what time of the day it was, if you went into a bar or restaurant and they had sport on the television, it was usually the NBA or college basketball and that included the time leading up to the Super Bowl.

Since being back in Australia I have been disappointed to see the Essendon supplements saga rear its head again. I guess it is not going to go away until such time as ASADA have closed their file. This could go on for years!

A good start to the Test series in South Africa, but I am starting to get a little concerned about Michael Clarke’s ongoing form lapse. Having scored 100’s in the first two Ashes tests he has not passed fifty since. I have been happy with the continued good form of Steve Smith, who in the same period has made three centuries. With Shane Watson missing from the line-up I hope we won’t be found to be a bowler short.

Have a great weekend everyone.

Sportzfan Radio show #291 highlights

dan-butterlyThe Professor talks to Dan Butterly on US sport including Palace Malice winning the Belmont Stakes result 130609_121408 the NBA playoffs – he still thinks Miami will prevail 130609_121550 – in Major League Baseball he looks at the Mets and Yankees series and thinks the Mets just got hot for four games 130609_mets but he didn’t name Serena Williams as the best African American athlete representing the US 130609_serena

With Mark Fiorenti out of State the Professor and the Panel talk soccerferguson2 including Melbourne Heart’s signing of Harry Kewell 130609_kewell and whether Sir Alex Ferguson should be approached to head up Australian soccer 130609_ferguson.

The Professor also talks to Paul Dalligan about State of Origin 1 130609_origin1 and round 13 action in the NRL 130609_NRL round 13.

 

 

Sportzfan Radio show #267.2

@SportzfanRadio now available on iTunes!14 October 2012 267.2 – The Professor and Daniel talk about their production meeting at the Great Western Hotel on Friday. Daniel assesses the opening round of the NBL season. He thinks Melbourne Tigers could finish last on the ladder. Mark Fiorenti looks at the Socceroos upcoming World Cup tie against Iraq. He says if the Socceroos lose this game, qualification for the World Cup will be very hard. Whilst he is worried about the result, he thinks Australia can squeeze out a one goal victory. He also reviews the A-League and says Melbourne Victory and coach Ange Postecolglou are in trouble after a record loss to Brisbane Roar. Paul Dalligan comes on the show to talk NRL and last night’s test win by Australia over New Zealand. He also says the race is on for getting Craig Bellamy’s signature on a contract for the 2014 season with three clubs in the running.

Sportzfan Radio show #266.2

@SportzfanRadio now available on iTunes!07 October 2012 266.2 – Daniel continues with his preview of the NBL season. He thinks Sydney Kings will finish on the bottom and Perth Wildcats will win the title with the Adelaide 36ers being the big improvers. Mark Fiorenti previews the A League season. He sees a wide open season with Brisbane Roar winning the minor premiership and Western Sydney Wanderers being wooden spooners. He also briefly looks at the Premier League with WBA being the surprise packets so far. The Panel have no real interest in the Bathurst 1000. Paul Dalligan wraps up the NRL season with some comments on last week’s Grand Final between Melbourne Storm and Canterbury-Bankstown. Gelding queries the biting incident involving James Graham and Billy Slater.

Sportzfan Radio show #266.1

@SportzfanRadio now available on iTunes!7 October 2012 266.1 – The show is back after a week off and the Panel lament the passing of Sportzfan Stan. Behind the mic this week are the Gelding, Daniel Eade, Mark Fiorenti, Mordiboy (aka Fatman) and the Professor. The Panel share some stories about Sportzfan Stan.  Mordiboy talks Ryder Cup and the US team choking on the last day to blow a huge lead. He also talks AFL and the trade period. The Gelding talks racing and the start of the Spring Carnival at Flemington. He also gives an update on Danish Rock. Daniel looks at the start of the NBL season and wonders why the Townsville Crocodiles and Cairns Taipans are tweeting about Beauty and the Geek.

Sportzfan Radio show #260.1

@SportzfanRadio now available on iTunes!19 August 2012 260.1 – An outside broadcast from the Great Western Hotel with the Professor, the Gelding, Paul Gamble and Daniel Eade talking SEABL basketball finals with special guest, Nunawading Spectres guard J Shep. Daniel discusses Olympic basketball and looks at the performances of the Boomers and the Opals. He also wonders about the Adelaide 36ers and their home court lease. The Gelding looks at Caulfield races and gives a few tips for the punters at the hotel. Paul Dalligan, David Coutts and John O’Callaghan join the panel to discuss the Olympics and Nathan Tinkler’s problems with his horse racing/breeding venture

Sportzfan Radio show #258.1

@SportzfanRadio now available on iTunes!5 August 2012 258.1 – featuring Daniel Eade, the Gelding, Sportzfan Stan and the Professor who begin the show talking AFL tanking then chat US sport with Dan Butterly who looks at the Olympic fortunes of the US team, especially the golden run of Michael Phelps. He also discusses the start of the NFL pre-season and the MLB trades made before the deadline. The Gelding talks horse racing and looks at the results from Moonee Valley and Canterbury.  Daniel reviews the Olympic basketball tournament and the fortunes of the Boomers and Opals.

Sportzfan Radio show #257.1

@SportzfanRadio now available on iTunes!29 July 2012 257.1 – featuring Daniel Eade, the Gelding, Sportzfan Stan and the Professor talking basketball NBL & NBA, ice hockey AIHL and the Gelding giving a rundown on yesterday’s racing. The Panel talk with special guests Simon Robinson coach of the Boomerangs and George Havakis assistant coach.