July 13, 2006
We are now into Day 2 of the Real Salt Lake rumor cycle.
Here are the latest stories on the future of Real Salt Lake:
Devo was able to get MLS commish Don "Show Me The Money" Garber on the horn in this piece.
Bob Matthews has a similiar reaction as I did to the news: it's just a move by Real Salt Lake to extort tax money out of the local government.
Real Salt Lake's owner denies talking to anyone else about moving the team.
Dave Checketts points the finger at Utah Jazz owner Larry Miller for the recent vote going against funding for a new stadium in Sandy, Utah.
A Salt Lake City columnist suggests that perhaps the threat to move the team won't work in Utah.
Also of note is that Dave Checketts had a conference call today about all of this that was carried live via the Real Salt Lake website. The main points that Rochester fans might care about were that he had yet to talk to anyone from Rochester yet and that he wouldn't own the team should it leave Utah.
The last part would seem to put to rest any ideas of Checketts owning the team and having the Rhinos operate the team at PAETEC Park in the future.
Also, Kevin Oklobzija of the D&C was on the conference call and asked a few questions. So, he might have a story on this in tomorrow's paper.
Personally, none of this news really changes the way I'm looking at this thing. Rochester has been down this road before with the Dallas Burn, the San Jose Earthquakes, and the Kansas City Wizards. Once again this smells like Rochester is being set up as the big bad city that is supposed to steal an MLS team if their city doesn't build them a new stadium. Whether or not there is any realistic deal in place to bring the team to Rochester seems to not be important in all of the rumor mongering.
So basically, I'll believe any talk of an MLS team in Rochester when I actually see them holding a press conference to announce the move.
The views and opinions expressed in this column are those of the author, and not necessarily those of the Rochester Rhinos or SoccerSam.com. Feel free to send any comments or complaints to firstname.lastname@example.org. James promises to read (but not to respond) to all of them.