How Much is Enough?

Steph Curry, with a five-year $201 million contract.
On the TUNNEYSIDE of SPORTS July 17, 2017, #649 Up Next…“How much is enough?”

After further review…The month of July means a swirl of National Basketball Association contract negotiations, as free agency commences for those NBA players who have completed their existing contracts. Free agency was first obtained in Major League Baseball by Curt Flood of the St. Louis Cardinals, and allows a player, after his contract expires, the option of leaving his current T*E*A*M to seek another.

In the NBA, July 1, 2017, was a monumental date for some players. The world champion Golden State Warriors locked-in their outstanding point guard and 3-point shooter, Steph Curry, with a five-year $201 million contract. Wow! This computes to just over $490,000 for every game he plays for the Warriors over the next five years. Now just minute, you Warriors’ fans, don’t go jumping on the messenger. As you review what the NBA is paying players throughout the league and assess the value that Curry brings to the Warriors, you may (or may not) agree that the money is well-served.

Curry’s teammate for the 2016-17 season was Kevin Durant, who exercised his free agency at the end of the 2016 season, leaving the Oklahoma City Thunder to join the Warriors. His presence and abilities not only may have been the deciding factor in the Warriors’ NBA championship, they also earned Durant the Finals MVP award. To remain with the Warriors, this off-season, he took a “pay cut” to help his T*E*A*M retain a couple of his teammates – namely Andre Iguodala, who signed for $48 million over three years and Shaun Livingston, who got $20 million for three years. Durant could have easily demanded the Warriors pay the maximum allowable salary of $31.8 million. Instead, he will make just over $25 million in each of the next two years. In his nine-year NBA career to date, Durant has made approximately $135 million. However, In the most lucrative deal of the summer, Houston Rockets star James Harden’s $228 million is the largest contract in NBA history and has further stretched the limits.

If you are a basketball player, maybe since grade school, and love this game with the ability to play at the professional level, would you take less to follow your dream and passion to play?  Of course, you would, if the rest of the NBA complied. But what amount would you demand? Or would you search for another field to earn a living? In past years many legendary NBA athletes played when the salaries were far lower. However, this is where the NBA market is today.

Will you log-in your thoughts about the salaries of professional athletes today?

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To contact Jim, go to JimTunney.com or email Jim@JimTunney.com.

Jim’s books are full of inspiration and interesting stories. Please visit his online store to learn more.

Another 101 Best of TunneySide of Sports

Be sure to get Jim’s book ‘Another 101 Best of TunneySide of Sports’ by clicking this link or using the email above to contact Jim directly.

These TunneySides take issues from real-life situations and relate them as inspiration for the betterment of others.

Jim is available for speaking engagements on leadership and T*E*A*M Building. His books are available for $20 which includes shipping and tax. The Tunney Bobblehead is available for $30. Please visit JimTunney.com. Thank you!

Posted in Sports, Tunney Side of Sports Columns | Leave a comment

An Honest Approach

TunneySide of Sports - An Honest Approach
On the TUNNEYSIDE of SPORTS July 10, 2017, #648 Up Next…“An honest approach”

After further review…A friend and fellow NFL official told me this story that bears repeating. One day while golfing with colleagues in the insurance business, he discovered yet another example of honesty being the only policy. He knew two of the men in his foursome but didn’t really get to know the fourth until later in the round. For sake of anonymity here, he called this fourth player “Ace.” Ace and his business partner had owned a property and casualty agency.

Those two had put in years of effort and grew their business into a respected midsize firm. It had attracted the attention of one of the big conglomerates. So, after heavy negotiations, they decided to accept the big firm’s offer and sell. But after a couple of years, Ace and his partner felt they weren’t active enough and wanted to take their business back into their own hands. The “big guns” said they couldn’t, claiming they had agreed to a non-compete clause. Ace knew there had never been such a discussion, much less an agreement, so the case went to court.

After two days of listening to both sides insisting their memory was the truth, the judge said, in effect, “It’s basically a question who do I believe, and in in the absence of any real evidence, I have to go with my gut. Several years ago, the judge said, “Ace played in the state golf championship. On the 18th hole, he hooked a drive into the rough, he was up and out in one, made his putt and apparently had won the tournament. However, before Ace signed his scorecard he admitted that he had grounded his club in the hazard. This violation, which no one had noticed, resulted in a two-stroke penalty and dropped him into second place. Ace could have slinked through and taken the win, but he didn’t. He told the truth when he didn’t have to and I believe he’s telling the truth now. Case closed.”

Being honest — in sports, in business, or relationships — for all the right reasons, even ones that you can’t anticipate, is the best and only way to live your life. This truth has been exposed time and time again, and more and more aptly proves the age-old saw—virtue is its own reward.

Will your path of life be down the road of honesty in all relationships?

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To contact Jim, go to JimTunney.com or email Jim@JimTunney.com.

Jim’s books are full of inspiration and interesting stories. Please visit his online store to learn more.

Another 101 Best of TunneySide of Sports

Be sure to get Jim’s book ‘Another 101 Best of TunneySide of Sports’ by clicking this link or using the email above to contact Jim directly.

These TunneySides take issues from real-life situations and relate them as inspiration for the betterment of others.

Jim is available for speaking engagements on leadership and T*E*A*M Building. His books are available for $20 which includes shipping and tax. The Tunney Bobblehead is available for $30. Please visit JimTunney.com. Thank you!

Posted in Sports, Tunney Side of Sports Columns | Leave a comment

Changing the Culture

derek_carr_-_interview_and_game_footage_nfl_youtube_screenshot
On the TUNNEYSIDE of SPORTS July 3, 2017, #647 Up Next…“Changing the Culture”

After further review…If you are or ever will be in the process of changing the culture of a T*E*A*M (e.g., club, organization, or family), please allow the TunneySide to offer a couple of thoughts. This topic recently occurred to me as I watched a sports talk show. The focus was on the Oakland Raiders quarterback Derek Carr, who signed a five-year contract for $125 million, with $70 million guaranteed. More on that another time.

These sports reporters were questioning whether this new contract – the highest to date in the NFL – would change the culture of the Raiders. Having officiated Raiders games for over 25 years, I have observed their demeanor up close and personal. They have developed a reputation for playing with pronounced physical aggression, a bad boy image meant to intimidate opponents. Raiders fans have always embodied the toughness and loved when it felt genuine with the team, but in my estimation, the Raiders were always more than that. You don’t win championships with cheap shots.

With the hiring of Jack Del Rio in 2015, Oakland got a head coach who grew up a Raiders fan and followed their history. Del Rio also knew of the culture of a T*E*A*M that he wanted to create in today’s NFL environment, and has spent the last two years implementing it. However, those reporters I heard were focused on the fact that now the Raiders had a franchise quarterback along with a powerful defensive end in Khalil Mack. They asserted that having these two superstars – one on each side of the ball – means that there is a strong basis of leadership for the team. But to me, leadership goes beyond salary and accolades.

While the skills of top rated personnel are important to the success of any culture, it is the leadership qualities of individuals that can make a culture great. It is ironic that many T*E*A*Ms feel that the best player must be the team leader. This is not necessarily so. Leadership has little to do with physical skills, it relates to an individual’s character, integrity, and a committed passion. Leadership is not so much about ability, as it is with responsibility. Anyone can step-up to be a leader.

Canadian astronaut Chris Hadfield was quoted: “Ultimately, leadership is not about glorious, crowning acts. It’s about keeping your team focused on a goal and motivated to do their best to achieve it, especially when the stakes are high and the consequences really matter. It’s about laying the groundwork for others’ success, and then standing back and letting them shine.” This is the framework of a successful culture.

Will you log-in your thoughts about creating a culture?

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To contact Jim, go to JimTunney.com or email Jim@JimTunney.com.

Jim’s books are full of inspiration and interesting stories. Please visit his online store to learn more.

Another 101 Best of TunneySide of Sports

Be sure to get Jim’s book ‘Another 101 Best of TunneySide of Sports’ by clicking this link or using the email above to contact Jim directly.

These TunneySides take issues from real-life situations and relate them as inspiration for the betterment of others.

Jim is available for speaking engagements on leadership and T*E*A*M Building. His books are available for $20 which includes shipping and tax. The Tunney Bobblehead is available for $30. Please visit JimTunney.com. Thank you!

Posted in Current Affairs, NFL, Tunney Side of Sports Columns | Tagged , | Leave a comment