The Tuesday Show Prep

posted by Steve Bortstein -

The NFL is officially calling it "reimbursement", and for all intents and purposes, it is just that.

But let's not think for a moment that commissioner Roger Goodell isn't going to enjoy cashing this check.

The league is demanding reimbursement in excess of $2 million from Dallas Cowboys owner Jerry Jones for court costs related to star running back Ezekiel Elliott's suspension and Jones' threatened litigation over commissioner Roger Goodell's contract.

According to an article on ESPN.com, the owners are citing a rule that has been on the books for more than two decades, that says if an owner participates in bringing litigation against other owners, he must reimburse them for the legal fees.

The league will order Jones to pay all fees that the compensation committee incurred while legally defending itself from the longtime Cowboys owner's threats to sue over the extension of Goodell's contract. The Cowboys never followed through on that suit. 

Jones will also have to compensate the NFL for all its legal fees spent defending the Elliott suspension.

The reimbursement action was generated by fellow owners, not Goodell, and -- according to the article -- has been approved by the league's finance committee.

Jones clashed with Goodell and the league on multiple issues in 2017. Jones was a vocal advocate of delaying a contract extension for Goodell and proposed on Dec. 1 to implement a six-month moratorium on finalizing the deal. Jones also threatened to sue the league if the compensation committee approved Goodell's extension, and was publicly critical of Elliott's six-game suspension.

The bottom line here is simple... You do not cross Roger Goodell. This is a simple thing. Follow the chain of events. Jones called out Goodell last season during the commissioner’s contract extension in the midst of the Elliott suspension. Elliott served the suspension and Goodell's contract was extended, again assuring himself of full control over the day-to-day operations of the most powerful professional sports league in the country. 

Hell yes, this is retribution. Jones should have known better than to tangle with the Godfather.

The Arizona story just will not go away

Meantime, still more fallout on separate investigations into improper benefits reportedly paid to college basketball players. A lawyer representing the family of Deandre Ayton called allegations involving the Arizona freshman false and urged the FBI, the NCAA and the university to come out publicly and clear Ayton's name.

In a statement published on ESPN.com, attorney Lynden B. Rose said Ayton's family is "outraged and disgusted" by reports that "have falsely implied that her son or his family have any involvement in illegal or prohibited activities regarding his decision to matriculate at the University of Arizona."

Over in East Lansing, Michigan, this was either a case of covering your ass or just stomping your foot to put out a potential fire. 

Michigan State said Monday that leading scorer Miles Bridges paid $40 to a charity of his choice to resolve an NCAA violation uncovered in a university-conducted review of allegations made in documents published last week by Yahoo! Sports.

The documents related to the FBI's investigation of corruption in college basketball. Christian Dawkins, a former employee of NBA agent Andy Miller, filed expense reports claiming that he paid Bridges' mother $400 in cash and that he paid $70.05 for dinner with the Bridges family, according to those documents.

There's a lot more to come in this series of stories and investigations. Those who took part in any number of these shenanigans will come to the surface before long.

And let me be very clear here, I don't want the players to suffer some longterm, debilitating fate on all of this. For the most part, the athletes merely took advantage of a system that was created and exploited by those in the position of exerting power.

A 17-year-old athlete with a rare ability to excel at their chosen craft knows how good he is, and he has already thought about, imagined and likely benefited to some degree as a result of his skills. He's not purposefully trying to undermine the integrity of the very business in which he's about to enter.

The integrity was long gone, well before this current crop of athletes ever took a single dime. 

It's not a movie review.... it's just hype for a new picture

While many of my listeners are already keenly aware of my geeky fandom for Jennifer Lawrence,  I do want to take this moment to express my already positive reviews for her new film "Red Sparrow".

Note that I haven't yet seen the film, and I'm a little squeamish on seeing my beloved "screen angel" in compromising situations on the big screen, I'm damn sure gonna watch them.

Here, for your consideration, is the trailer for Red Sparrow, opening this weekend at the Animas 10.

On the official listing for the film, Lawrence's character is someone who "is forced to use her body as a weapon."

Such a sweet way to be victimized.

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