Dodger Deal Answers Questions About Franchise's Once-Uncertain Future - NBC Southern California

A look at what's on deck in the LA Dodgers ownership saga

Dodger Deal Answers Questions About Franchise's Once-Uncertain Future

The fate of the Los Angeles Dodgers has been riddled with uncertainty. Now, thanks to a new ownership deal involving Magic Johnson, many of those questions seem to have answers.



    Dodger Deal Answers Questions About Franchise's Once-Uncertain Future
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    Matt Kemp celebrates a walk-off RBI single during a game on Aug. 12, 2011.

    When Frank McCourt bought the Dodgers he announced, "Welcome to a new era of Dodger baseball."

    That era is coming to an end and not soon enough.

    To be fair, McCourt did have some success. But along with then-wife Jamie, the McCourts became caught up in the glitz and glamor of Hollywood. Jamie drew up an action plan to become President of the United States, while Frank used the club as a personal ATM, driving the Dodgers into bankruptcy.

    The Changeup: The Frank McCourt Era

    Once the crown jewel of Los Angeles, the team was a national embarrassment. The Dodger brand was seriously tainted. Could it ever recover?

    With Magic Johnson and his group buying the club, it already has.

    Los Angeles has had a love affair with Earvin Johnson since the Lakers drafted him. He is one of the most beloved people in a city of stars. Everything he's touched has turned to gold.

    Magic may not know a lot about baseball but he knows a lot about business and the community. People want to embrace him.

    With Magic at the forefront, the club will once again draw 3 million.

    Will Guggenheim Partners spend money to improve the club? Let's remember that they spent a staggering $2 billion to buy it. When you consider they control more than $125 billion in assets, it's a drop in the bucket. Keep in mind, no one is in business to lose money. These folks are smart. They also know you have to spend money to make money.

    Where will the money come from? Television.

    In the ever-changing media landscape, sports is one area where people are willing to pay big bucks. Both Fox and Time Warner have indicated they want the rights, and could be willing to pay around $150 million a year to get them. Others may jump into the game; and then again, the Dodgers could start their own channel and control all revenue streams.

    There are two things about people in Los Angeles: They like winners and they like stars. With Magic Johnson, the Dodgers have a star at the top of the pyramid. He brings instant credibility. With Guggenheim, you have money.

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