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M.S.G. Group Intends To Sell The Liberty!!!
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Bob Lamm



Joined: 11 Apr 2010
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PostPosted: 11/18/17 10:28 am    ::: Reply Reply with quote

Here's a question for season ticket holders. Are any of you in touch with New York Liberty sales staff these days? Would any allow you to share anonymous comments? I wonder what they're hearing, how they are proceeding on their jobs, and how they're feeling about the future. If a new group buys the Liberty and moves the team to the Barclay Center or elsewhere, some current New York Liberty employees could move over but no one's jobs would be guaranteed.

I used to know two terrific people on the sales staff, but they both left for other jobs. I feel for current Liberty employees. The current uncertainty isn't enjoyable for me as a fan, but that's trivial compared to what it means for the staff.



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tfan



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PostPosted: 11/18/17 10:28 am    ::: Reply Reply with quote

stever wrote:
https://www.thestreet.com/story/14395965/1/speculation-swirls-around-msg-jim-dolan-s-media-empire.html

Quote:
The real question is what is going on at MSG and why did the company choose now to sell, the source said. The value of the Liberty, the source said, was marginal to the company's bottom line.


Quote:
According to David Miller of Loop Capital Markets LLC, the Liberty had negative free cash flow of $23 million in 2017 and are on pace to lose about $41 million in 2018. The firm attributed an asset value of negative $414 million to the franchise, or 18 times its cash flow.

Still, the franchise should garner interest.


Those figures are crazy. I think negative free cash flow means they had to put $23 million into the business in 2017 in order to pay the bills. Losses would be even higher if they have non-current-cash expenses like depreciation. As a public company, there must be financial documents that will detail some of what they are claiming. It seems that you would only want to cook the books to move expenses to the Liberty that don't belong there if you are trying to sell something besides the Liberty, not if you want to sell the Liberty.

Why would the money they need to put into running the Liberty increase by $18 million next year? They are supposed to have it valued on their books at -$414 million dollars and yet Charles Baker claims "it would be an interesting opportunity" based on the fact that there is interest in the NBA and NBA G-league.

This article talks about whether Dolan would sell the Knicks. They are potentially worth more than what MSG is valued at. Dolan also talks about potential trouble for sports networks, something that would be bad for the WNBA:

Quote:
“Today’s monetization system, the one we’ve had over the last 20 years... Where 90 something percent of the American public who has television pays for ESPN whether they watch ESPN or not, right?” Dolan said during a future of sports content panel at the Consumer Electronics Show in January. “All of that advertising, if that system falls apart, which it looks like it is starting to erode now, it will not even come close to that kind of production of rights value and that’s really the thing we will all have to grapple with.”


Randy



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PostPosted: 11/18/17 11:32 am    ::: Reply Reply with quote

I find those numbers really, really hard to believe and I would bet it is result of internal accounting and allocating costs between business lines. I suppose if they imputed an arena rental fee and apportioned overhead costs between the Knicks and Liberty on a per player basis or something like that they could come up with whatever number they wanted. And maybe they pay Thomas $5 million per year. If those number reflect reality, it is really hard to see them ever playing again in MSG.



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toad455



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PostPosted: 11/18/17 11:49 am    ::: Reply Reply with quote

It's believed the salary of even one Knicks' player could support the Liberty (or any WNBA team). I always found it ridiculous that these NBA teams think dumping their female counterparts will help them financially.



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NYL_WNBA_FAN



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PostPosted: 11/18/17 4:51 pm    ::: Reply Reply with quote

How can a team with around a $1.5M salary cap lose between 23-41 million dollars? I’m good at math but business stuff was never my thing.



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Randy



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PostPosted: 11/18/17 5:13 pm    ::: Reply Reply with quote

If they really are losing $41 M next season (which I think is like a reverse Madoff accounting scheme) no way the league (backed by the other team owners) will want take over the Liberty next year. Each team would be taking a hit of almost $4.



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Libra_Girl



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PostPosted: 11/18/17 8:10 pm    ::: Reply Reply with quote

I hope the Liberty find a local owner. It would suck for the wnba to lose one of the orginal teams and the local fans dont deserve to lose their team neither.Hoping for the best end result in this situation.


zune69



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PostPosted: 11/18/17 10:47 pm    ::: Reply Reply with quote

The 23-41 million dollar lost is probably the amount of revenue MSG is losing from hosting wnba games instead of music concerts/Major Events.


StevenHW



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PostPosted: 11/18/17 11:53 pm    ::: Reply Reply with quote

GlennMacGrady wrote:
Maybe it's time for a team in Canada. Toronto.


A Toronto sports columnist thinks it might be a good idea if Maple Leafs Sports & Entertainment (MLSE) would buy the Liberty and move it to Toronto.

MLSE owns the Maple Leafs NHL team, Toronto FC soccer club, and the Toronto Raptors NBA team.

https://www.thestar.com/sports/doug_smiths_sports_blog/2017/11/17/wnba-team-for-sale-mlse-should-make-a-call-smith.html



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root_thing



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PostPosted: 11/19/17 12:00 am    ::: Reply Reply with quote

zune69 wrote:
The 23-41 million dollar lost is probably the amount of revenue MSG is losing from hosting wnba games instead of music concerts/Major Events.


That's theoretical opportunity cost. It has nothing to do with cashflow.

I just took a look at the most recent MSG SEC filings. I don't see a breakdown by teams. Their website says that no annual reports are available at this time. I can't even find old ones, which is odd. Anyway, I wouldn't believe those numbers. If they're not available from the team, then the financial analyst has to do it by deduction and assumptions. Wall Street guys are wrong all the time with their analysis. Even if they got the numbers from MSG, Randy is correct about allocations and corporate loading. For example, since Dolan is technically over the Liberty, they would get an allocation for the cost of his corporate jets.



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toad455



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PostPosted: 11/19/17 9:19 am    ::: Reply Reply with quote

StevenHW wrote:
GlennMacGrady wrote:
Maybe it's time for a team in Canada. Toronto.


A Toronto sports columnist thinks it might be a good idea if Maple Leafs Sports & Entertainment (MLSE) would buy the Liberty and move it to Toronto.

MLSE owns the Maple Leafs NHL team, Toronto FC soccer club, and the Toronto Raptors NBA team.

https://www.thestar.com/sports/doug_smiths_sports_blog/2017/11/17/wnba-team-for-sale-mlse-should-make-a-call-smith.html


It's an option, sure. But I'm just hoping they stay in the NYC area. Grant Toronto & San Francisco expansion teams for 2020.



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Ay Mate



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PostPosted: 11/20/17 12:42 pm    ::: Reply Reply with quote

StevenHW wrote:
GlennMacGrady wrote:
Maybe it's time for a team in Canada. Toronto.


A Toronto sports columnist thinks it might be a good idea if Maple Leafs Sports & Entertainment (MLSE) would buy the Liberty and move it to Toronto.

MLSE owns the Maple Leafs NHL team, Toronto FC soccer club, and the Toronto Raptors NBA team.

https://www.thestar.com/sports/doug_smiths_sports_blog/2017/11/17/wnba-team-for-sale-mlse-should-make-a-call-smith.html


Might as well just fold the Liberty. Won’t work in Canada. It’ll be another Tulsa Shock scenerio. All the best Liberty players either won’t show up to play for Toronto, like Deanna Nolan did, or they’ll be very unhappy playing in Canada during the summer that they’ll force their way out, or be vocally unhappy, causing the owners to trade them. There is zero exposure in Canada of the WNBA. And their attendance would be in the 2000-3000 range. If they move to Toronto, it’s certain death of the franchise, and losing 10k fans per game in NYC will badly hurt the WNBA financially.


Shades



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PostPosted: 11/20/17 1:00 pm    ::: Reply Reply with quote

This isn't about whimsy. They should go to wherever there is a very wealthy and enthusiastic owner who won't bail at the possible lost of their first million.

Any chance Steve Job's philanthropist widow could back out of her Mystics deal to purchase the Liberty?



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WNBA 09



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PostPosted: 11/20/17 2:00 pm    ::: Reply Reply with quote

Shades wrote:
This isn't about whimsy. They should go to wherever there is a very wealthy and enthusiastic owner who won't bail at the possible lost of their first million.

Any chance Steve Job's philanthropist widow could back out of her Mystics deal to purchase the Liberty?


I agree , if theirs a owner worth spitting out the cash to invest then they should go . Most fans claiming it wont work in Canada are Liberty fans . Maybe you guys just Don't want it too work because its your team .



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CourtsideTix



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PostPosted: 11/20/17 5:50 pm    ::: Reply Reply with quote

Shades wrote:

Any chance Steve Job's philanthropist widow could back out of her Mystics deal to purchase the Liberty?


That's a joke, right? There's no "Mystics deal." Laurene Powell Jobs bought a huge stake in Monumental Sports, effectively becoming an owner of major men's sports teams -- NBA and NFL -- (and, yes, the little niche Mystics). This followed her unsuccessful bid a few years ago to buy (as part of a group) the Los Angeles Clippers.

https://www.washingtonpost.com/business/capitalbusiness/laurene-powell-jobs-is-buying-a-big-stake-in-wizards-capitals-sports-empire/2017/10/02/065d37ca-a39a-11e7-8cfe-d5b912fabc99_story.html?utm_term=.d86bb41379ea


ArtBest23



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PostPosted: 11/20/17 6:02 pm    ::: Reply Reply with quote

CourtsideTix wrote:
Shades wrote:

Any chance Steve Job's philanthropist widow could back out of her Mystics deal to purchase the Liberty?


That's a joke, right? There's no "Mystics deal." Laurene Powell Jobs bought a huge stake in Monumental Sports, effectively becoming an owner of major men's sports teams -- NBA and NFL -- (and, yes, the little niche Mystics). This followed her unsuccessful bid a few years ago to buy (as part of a group) the Los Angeles Clippers.

https://www.washingtonpost.com/business/capitalbusiness/laurene-powell-jobs-is-buying-a-big-stake-in-wizards-capitals-sports-empire/2017/10/02/065d37ca-a39a-11e7-8cfe-d5b912fabc99_story.html?utm_term=.d86bb41379ea


Well, maybe she could buy ALL of the Knicks and Rangers from MSG and thus become an actual owner, rather than a 20% owner with no management control, and the Liberty could tag along.


root_thing



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PostPosted: 11/20/17 6:28 pm    ::: Reply Reply with quote

ArtBest23 wrote:
CourtsideTix wrote:
Shades wrote:

Any chance Steve Job's philanthropist widow could back out of her Mystics deal to purchase the Liberty?


That's a joke, right? There's no "Mystics deal." Laurene Powell Jobs bought a huge stake in Monumental Sports, effectively becoming an owner of major men's sports teams -- NBA and NFL -- (and, yes, the little niche Mystics). This followed her unsuccessful bid a few years ago to buy (as part of a group) the Los Angeles Clippers.

https://www.washingtonpost.com/business/capitalbusiness/laurene-powell-jobs-is-buying-a-big-stake-in-wizards-capitals-sports-empire/2017/10/02/065d37ca-a39a-11e7-8cfe-d5b912fabc99_story.html?utm_term=.d86bb41379ea


Well, maybe she could buy ALL of the Knicks and Rangers from MSG and thus become an actual owner, rather than a 20% owner with no management control, and the Liberty could tag along.


Hmmm, local girl from West Milford, NJ. BA from Wharton, MBA from Stanford. Deep pockets, likes sports. I approve! Wink



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PostPosted: 11/23/17 10:46 am    ::: Reply Reply with quote

Actually got a call from my rep within 10 mins of the release and have been im email contact...they are still selling and answering questions and very busy with the questions...all i wanna say publically and while im very skeptical given history they made me way more optimistic than i should be...i will have a postzilla on this at some point but need comp working...not gonna poke at a phone for this lol



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toad455



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PostPosted: 11/23/17 10:54 am    ::: Reply Reply with quote

I do find it interesting that they're selling 2018 season tickets for MSG. Were the Sparks also selling season tickets before the previous owners put the team up for sale?



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Bob Lamm



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PostPosted: 11/23/17 11:02 am    ::: Reply Reply with quote

Bob Lamm wrote:
Richyyy wrote:
GlennMacGrady wrote:
I don't see why the league "has" to have a team in NYC. They only "need" to be in a place where they can consistently sell whatever number of tickets is required to make a business profit.

When it comes to drawing sponsors and driving other income streams, being a truly national enterprise is a big thing. You want eyes on the product, exposure, and interest where it matters and people have disposable income. That means being in major markets. They've tried being in some smaller ones as well when interested owners have cropped up in those places, but they've actively wanted to be in places like Chicago and Atanta, and made every effort to survive in LA. That's why the WNBA will be desperate to survive in New York in some shape or form, whether it's at MSG, Brooklyn, some random college arena or a giant floating barge next to the Statue of Liberty.

Losing places like Houston, Charlotte or Miami obviously wasn't good, but it's not the same as losing New York or LA. It's one case where the league might run the franchise themselves temporarily if Dolan and co absolutely forced them to.


Agreed.


Yes indeed. OK, I'm a New Yorker and a Liberty fan. But if the WNBA were losing its L.A. team, I'd say the exact same thing.



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root_thing



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PostPosted: 11/23/17 1:14 pm    ::: Reply Reply with quote

If we're looking for a local female owner with deep pockets, how about Rebekah Mercer? Of course, Liberty fans would have to join the Alt Right, and Tina would have to switch to an All Lives Matter T-shirt. Razz



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PostPosted: 11/23/17 1:45 pm    ::: Reply Reply with quote

toad455 wrote:
I do find it interesting that they're selling 2018 season tickets for MSG. Were the Sparks also selling season tickets before the previous owners put the team up for sale?


The Comets website was still selling tickets for a couple of days after their fold was announced



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PostPosted: 11/25/17 8:15 pm    ::: Reply Reply with quote

Leftover list of things for which to be thankful
By Scott Ostler

http://www.sfchronicle.com/sports/article/Leftover-list-of-things-for-which-to-be-thankful-12383443.php

Quote:
That the Warriors are at least considering sponsoring a WNBA team. Sadly, the Dubs say they’re too busy right now making plans for their move to the arena they’re building in San Francisco. Alas, once they move, the Warriors still will be busy, making the adjustment. Come on, Joe Lacob, the clock is ticking. You’re a strong supporter of women’s hoops, hire a few sharp people to get that WNBA dream rolling.



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Shades



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PostPosted: 12/01/17 1:58 pm    ::: Reply Reply with quote

Sources: Several Groups In Active Discussions About Purchasing WNBA Liberty

https://www.sportsbusinessdaily.com/Daily/Issues/2017/12/01/Franchises/Liberty.aspx

Quote:
Several potential ownership groups are in "active discussions" with MSG Co. about purchasing the WNBA Liberty, according to sources cited by Ian Begley of ESPN.com. Sources said that the groups are "preparing formal bids and have agreed to non-disclosure agreements as part of the bidding p...


This is a teaser for a subscriber story on Sports Business Daily. I'm not sure if they have any additional information. If you subscribe to this, maybe you could share with the rest of us?



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PostPosted: 12/01/17 2:07 pm    ::: Reply Reply with quote

It's a rehash of the ESPN story



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