Why Mark Cuban is wrong about the NFL

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Football News

Mark Cuban certainly made his feelings know about the NFL business on Sunday night.

Speaking after the Dallas Mavericks game, he pointed out that the NFL bubble will burst because of the rapid expansion it is trying to engineer.

His thoughts is that sometime in the next ten years, the NFL will get too big for its own boots, and he's perfectly qualified to make that observation.

Arguably, the NBA has finally recovered from its own financial slump in recent years, despite the potential damage the CBA caused over a year ago.

Cuban was a part of a crisis that gripped the NBA. Falling numbers in crowds and on TV threatened the sport because it got too big, too quickly.

As Mark Cuban puts it, the pig gets fat.

But that won't happen with the NFL.

There are a couple of reasons for it. Firstly, the NFL has been very, very clever at imparting the nostalgia and romance in their sport that Hollywood evokes in movies thanks to their excellent use of film footage. Not just old games, but current ones too. NFL Films and their camera coverage is a highlight reel of such quality that no other sport in the world can equal it.

Secondly, the NFL is a big entertainment soap opera with each area watching a different show and different supporting characters every week. There are more people involved that are TV gold compared to the NBA. People will tune in.

Thirdly, the TV views of the Super Bowl means it was the most watched programme in the world. Despite a team of unknowns and a team of old veterans. It has the capacity to create stories week in and week out, along with raising an easily accessible spectacle.

Fourthly, there is no one super power. The NBA suffered greatly from the eventual retirement of Michael Jordan. Yes teams were known and players, but internationally and arguably nationally as well, Basketball was the Michael Jordan show for so long, it became inadvertently financially dependant on his draw power.

Fifthly, it's easier to watch an NFL game. I don't mean to understand the game but from the simple fact that there are less of them. Not only does this make it easier for fans to keep up but the tools available to do so like Redzone and DirectTV are perfect for it and are unparalleled in any other sports coverage.

I'm not bashing Mark Cuban's viewpoint at all, he raises a valid question. But I believe he'll be proved wrong because the NFL has conservatively expanded and settled itself to cope with the economy, and has learned from the NBA and others.

There are problems afoot for the NFL though. International expansion is a tricky thing to pull off with the amount of games now leaving the US. The numbers of stadium goers could drop due to the accessibility of the TV coverage. A franchise expansion could rock the boat.

Either way, Mark Cuban has set his clock for ten years so lets revisit both parties then, and see who was right.

Dallas Mavericks

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