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Shrecknet
Jan 2, 2005

Nosferatu Enthusiast
@shrecknet



"Trust the Process"

"Suck for Luck"

"Patrick Ewing Sweepstakes"

Of the four big US sports, all four generally acquire talent through an amateur draft process, with a draft seed based on ypur previous year's record. This has lead some teams to decide on a metastrategy of "tanking," or losing on purpose to secure a better draft seed and, because these drafts are not serpentine (meaning you pick the same spot every round), secure the best talent available each round (this matters more in the NBA which has far fewer rounds)

However, sports are a specialized sort of live entertainment industry. The goal is to put the best product on the field/court/ice as possible, and tell fans -who spent a LOT of money on tickets- that you are at least trying to spoil someone else's season. Obviously you can have rebuilding years when you know you dont have the personnel for a title run - but stranger things have happened and it aint over till any given Sunday and all that.

Tanking is just miserable though. It's knowing not only is this a rebuilding year, but the team is consciously designed to be bad just to get to hope a rookie will end the tailspin.

You wouldn't accept going to a Metallica concert with some 9 year old on a recorder replacing James Hetfield so Metallica can save some money on this tour so the next tour can hire a badass guitarist!

So I put it to SAS: what processes can we Institute to stop tanking and compel teams, even rebuilding ones, to at least attempt to put a watchable product in front of fans?

Contrarian take: with the success of the Astros and nets after a tanking process, should tanking be dealt with?

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Feels Villeneuve
Oct 7, 2007

Kanye West - Touch the Sky



relegate teams to the minor leagues thanks everyone

DJExile
Jun 27, 2007




It depends a bit on the sport. Basketball gets tanking because one great player can so dramatically change a team's fortunes, just look at how far Lebron dragged his various shitbox Cavs teams. Hockey's a little similar but you still need more than just 1 generational talent. Edmonton has a god king player in Conor McDavid but they've hosed up so badly at building any team around him that they've never gone further than a 1st playoff round exit.

Meanwhile, football and baseball have plenty of shitass teams with incredible players that never go anywhere.

I think some of it is in how you randomize/cap chances of top picks, like the lottery system the NBA and NHL do. The Philadelphia Flyers got a #2 overall pick a couple years ago despite not finishing at (or even that close to) the bottom of the league. I really don't know the answer with the MLB since you really have to build an overall team and one top draft pick doesn't have nearly as heavy an effect as it does in basketball or hockey. I don't know if it's a matter of forcing a higher salary floor or what.

Shrecknet
Jan 2, 2005

Nosferatu Enthusiast
@shrecknet



Feels Villeneuve posted:

relegate teams to the minor leagues thanks everyone

I mean, yes promotion/relegation solves this nicely, but how do teams deal with payroll? Or do they just not become eligible for postseason play ? I dont know enough about how soccer handles it.

New Concept Hole
Oct 10, 2012

東方動的


Support Czechoslovakian independence

DJExile
Jun 27, 2007




Minor league relegation would never work with any north american league.

E: part of that is because there's no minor league for the NFL (no the AAF doesn't count and it's about to die anyway), and the gaps in talent between even the worst NHL/MLB/NBA/NFL teams and the top AHL/AA/G-league/college teams are gargantuan.

R.D. Mangles
Jan 10, 2004




Get rid of the draft

Katana_Warrior
Dec 25, 2009



just cap off contracts at a 2 season max and get rid of any team control on rookie contracts so that teams have no incentive to care about who they draft and develop

Feels Villeneuve
Oct 7, 2007

Kanye West - Touch the Sky



Eliminate the draft and have new players and free agents assigned by auction
https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=AGdNAmF_Fy4

G-Hawk
Dec 15, 2003



as an astros fans, i'm happy they tanked and see no reason to try to stop it.

Shrecknet
Jan 2, 2005

Nosferatu Enthusiast
@shrecknet



DJExile posted:

Minor league relegation would never work with any north american league.

E: part of that is because there's no minor league for the NFL (no the AAF doesn't count and it's about to die anyway), and the gaps in talent between even the worst NHL/MLB/NBA/NFL teams and the top AHL/AA/G-league/college teams are gargantuan.
OK, so what can we do to encourage teams to compete every year? Or is it actually desirable for dynasties (both successful ones like the St Louis Cardinals and unsuccessful ones like the Cleveland Browns) to exist?

G-Hawk posted:

as an astros fans, i'm happy they tanked and see no reason to try to stop it.
Astros were a weird case because the front office were very vocal about what they were doing and were clearly taking steps to actually get better, and when it was time to make a run, they went out and actually spent on Verlander to secure a pennant.

I just don't know that saying "hey fans, we're gonna be bad for this year and probably next year" works in all situations. Again, they are (at their core) entertainment ventures, so they need to be entertaining to watch. A bunch of AAAA-guys hacking at ML pitches for two years while you sandbag prospects isn't "fun"

Shrecknet fucked around with this message at 19:23 on Feb 27, 2019

New Concept Hole
Oct 10, 2012

東方動的


As far as MLB goes, introduce a league minimum for players that's an average of what's made league-wide by rookies after arbitration, which serves as a floor and can be arbitrated to a higher amount based on performance. On top of this, introduce a league-minimum active roster payroll floor that's not just yearly but includes projected salary for the next, let's say, 2 seasons. In other words, the Rays, for example, would need to not only have a payroll of $100m this year, but continuously through to 2021 to keep from being penalized in the form of losing draft picks(e: Or their rev. share). If the team makes the decision to trade someone, they can't go under that projected payroll minimum in doing so.

I'm sure there's flaws in this system, but that's why they're supposed to negotiate these things every 5 years.

New Concept Hole fucked around with this message at 19:25 on Feb 27, 2019

rare Magic card l00k
Jan 3, 2011




Eliminate the draft.

If there's no benefit to sucking, then it'll stop.

DJExile
Jun 27, 2007




Easy Diff posted:

OK, so what can we do to encourage teams to compete every year? Or is it actually desirable for dynasties (both successful ones like the St Louis Cardinals and unsuccessful ones like the Cleveland Browns) to exist?

Cleveland's a football market and nothing else. They don't give a gently caress about the Cavs if Lebron's not there, and the Indians are an afterthought as soon as Browns preseason hits. They were still selling out and never coming up against blackout rules even when their owner came under federal indictment and they were on a 1-31 stretch. CBS will send their bottom-tier broadcasters because they know nobody nationally will give a gently caress about the broadcast, but the NFL doesn't give a drat what they do so long as asses are in seats. If people keep coming even while they're historically trash, what's the incentive to get any better?

I think part of it is setting salary floors, but even then, that's not guaranteeing success, especially if the teams spend high on low talent players.

Feels Villeneuve
Oct 7, 2007

Kanye West - Touch the Sky



DJExile posted:

If people keep coming even while they're historically trash, what's the incentive to get any better?

isn't this the business model of the Toronto Maple Leafs

DJExile
Jun 27, 2007




Feels Villeneuve posted:

isn't this the business model of the Toronto Maple Leafs

Pretty much!

Shrecknet
Jan 2, 2005

Nosferatu Enthusiast
@shrecknet



rare Magic card l00k posted:

Eliminate the draft.

If there's no benefit to sucking, then it'll stop.

This is actually a pretty compelling argument, and makes a lot of sense from a labor rights standpoint too. The only concern is MLB, which has no salary cap so smaller-market teams literally could have no cost-controlled talent ever - although that itself may be desirable after the Yanks/Sawks pay $100m upfront for "The Next Mike Trout" a couple times and end up with four years of "The Next Matt Weiters"

Saucer Crab
Apr 2, 2009






Eliminate the draft, eliminate owners, make the leagues a full coop of the players and operating employees. Divide the revenue evenly between teams at a set percentage, either at full on 100% or a lower amount, or at 80-90% evenly to each , with the extra getting split among top teams.

Easy Diff posted:

This is actually a pretty compelling argument, and makes a lot of sense from a labor rights standpoint too. The only concern is MLB, which has no salary cap so smaller-market teams literally could have no cost-controlled talent ever - although that itself may be desirable after the Yanks/Sawks pay $100m upfront for "The Next Mike Trout" a couple times and end up with four years of "The Next Matt Weiters"

I've completely lost interest in baseball because the Reds owners have been the right combination of small enough market, greedy assholes, and mostly incompetent that they haven't competed with any consistency in forever. Eliminate the first two and you can solve a lot of problems, the last part is just going to be part of anything competitive.

Saucer Crab fucked around with this message at 19:49 on Feb 27, 2019

Dutchy
Jul 8, 2010


R.D. Mangles posted:

Get rid of the draft

Yeah

DJExile
Jun 27, 2007




Yeah nixing the draft would be a good start.

fisting by many
Dec 25, 2009





Reduce the number of teams :D But that can never happen.

I think changing the rules of service time in regards to entry level contracts and free agency is a big one. In the NHL the draft is so advantageous because you're not just getting trying to get a top player for free, you're spending a miniscule fraction of a comparable player's cap hit, giving you more cap space to make the rest of the team better (signing expensive talent, or taking on a bad contract in a trade for assets). It's basically impossible to ice a championship contender if you are paying your entire roster what they are worth. And with research suggesting that players are entering their primes much younger than expected, before they are even eligible for UFA, it doesn't make sense to underpay the best players so much.

I also want to mention the NPB's (Japanese baseball) draft system, even though it could never work with 30 teams. Standings order only applies to round 2 and beyond. Round 1, all teams pick at once. If any player is selected by multiple teams, a lottery decides the winner, and the losing teams then have to pick from whomever is left. This introduces a lot of strategy to the draft (if you're already a decent team you're probably better off picking a less popular player that fills an immediate need), whereas weaker teams can swing for the fences and throw their name in on a superstar. And teams that are already strong can yolo it on a superstar too! Just ask Nippon-Ham who won lotteries on Darvish, Ohtani, and now Kiyomiya, as if they needed any help. And you have teams leaking their selections before the draft to try and dissuade other teams from going for their player and forcing a lottery. It's a lot of fun!

Shrecknet
Jan 2, 2005

Nosferatu Enthusiast
@shrecknet



fisting by many posted:

the NPB's (Japanese baseball) draft system
gently caress it, at that point just put a #1 overall pick on the fifty yard line and have each team send a guy for a footrace scramble to get it.

Edward Mass
Sep 14, 2011

*dubstep intensifies*


Easy Diff posted:

I mean, yes promotion/relegation solves this nicely, but how do teams deal with payroll? Or do they just not become eligible for postseason play ? I dont know enough about how soccer handles it.

1) There is no salary cap or floor
2) There are no playoffs
3) There are no trades, itís only cash for players

Feels Villeneuve
Oct 7, 2007

Kanye West - Touch the Sky



also 4) the league is not basically a big cartel of teams, and teams are more or less independent entities which compete with each other

VikingSkull
Jan 23, 2017
Look Viking you're a trash Trump supporter what the fuck makes you think you can have an avatar that isn't what I decide? Shut your fucking trap and go away. Your trolling is tiresome and just shits up the forum.

as a Spurs fan it got the team Tim Duncan so I'm grateful

Shrecknet
Jan 2, 2005

Nosferatu Enthusiast
@shrecknet



DJExile posted:

Yeah nixing the draft would be a good start.

How would nixing the draft affect player salaries? Would anyone sign a FA contract with rookie pay #s? Someone already mentioned how its impossible to put a championship NHL team on the ice at fair market value; would overall salaries go down or would the players bargain for an expanded cap?

Fuzz Boxer
Apr 28, 2007

sticking with whatever fails

I think you get rid of the rookie wage scale at that point and go with whatever the current market demands. There will be plenty of players getting big money that don't pan out but that's not different than now.

Also while we're at it keep the team salary cap for the NBA but eliminate the individual max cap. This will help reduce super teams from forming as the amount that superstars would have to sacrifice would be too great.

Crazy Ted
Jul 29, 2003



Eddy Bulundees posted:

I think you get rid of the rookie wage scale at that point and go with whatever the current market demands. There will be plenty of players getting big money that don't pan out but that's not different than now.
I was just about to post this.

Part of what makes tanking, especially in the NBA, such an attractive prospect is that thanks to the rookie wage scale teams can hoard young stars on contracts that are generally worth less than their market value by their third year if they pan out.

Forcing teams to pay top draft picks like the stars they're expected to be forces teams to make tougher decisions when it comes to their spending. Tank and spend the money on a young player in the hopes they hit their potential? Or go after more established players?

General Dog
Apr 26, 2008

Everybody's working for the weekend

Eliminating the draft would work

If we're operating in the realm of things that would ever happen, a randomized draft order (with no tie to W-L record) would do the trick. Draft order could be announced several years in advance so teams would know exactly what they're selling/getting when they traded picks. Or you could not announce it until an hour before the draft.

Cavauro
Jan 9, 2008




Encourage tanking. have all the old men come out and say, "tanking is cool, and for the kids." Teams will say ew god At that poo poo. the players will refuse to tank because that isn't it chief!

tadashi
Feb 20, 2006



Reverse drafts in every league in the first round. Want to get the next generational prospect? Win some loving games, you loving losers.

Elephanthead
Sep 11, 2008




Toilet Rascal

Put everyone in the lotto and give the worse half of teams teams two balls.

Fuzz Boxer
Apr 28, 2007

sticking with whatever fails

There was an interesting idea a few years back of a "draft wheel". You rotate over one notch on this wheel every year. Teams know exactly what pick they will get, or be able to wheel and deal with. In a 30 team league your team would be guaranteed the #1 pick every 30 years.

Konstantin
Jun 20, 2005
And the Lord said, "Look, they are one people, and they have all one language; and this is only the beginning of what they will do; nothing that they propose to do will now be impossible for them.

I think eliminating the draft would be great in baseball, since players there don't contribute immediately and Minor League players make next to nothing. One other idea would be to set a minimum win figure and sanction teams that miss it several years in a row. I think under .400 for baseball, .333 for basketball and .250 for football would be good numbers. Suck for too long and the league can intervene and act as a GM, forcing teams to make personnel moves that improve short term results.

Shrecknet
Jan 2, 2005

Nosferatu Enthusiast
@shrecknet



Tanking has tangible effect on sales

quote:

There are of course other ways to explain such a drop in attendance, but those are topics Manfred doesnít really want to broach in public. One issue is that more teams than ever are more willing than ever to put a non-competitive product on the field.

The Astros did it "the right way" by broadcasting that they were intentionally tanking, and doing fan events like cheap hot dogs or whatever. But teams that do not explicitly state their tanking, and do not take steps to improve the fan experience in other ways, are going to suffer.

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Teemu Pokemon
Jun 19, 2004

To sign them is my real test

With full no movement clause


tanking is fine and is a legitimate strategy. the real problem is lovely ownership that it either too apathetic or actively self-sabatoging. bad teams are bad because they don't have good players. nerfing their ability to get better chances at getting more good players is a good way to help them continue to suck

draft lotteries and flat out eliminations od the draft, draft wheels, ranking teams in reverse standings for non-playoff teams, ranking by "wins/points" after elimination are all symptom treating and ignoring the real problem: there's no incentive for an owner to win if they can make money on a loser. the pirates from like 1995-2015 are living proof of this

Teemu Pokemon fucked around with this message at 13:34 on Apr 3, 2019

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