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Major League Rugby

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Re: Major League Rugby

Postby TheStroBro » Wed, 20 Nov 2019, 16:35

Here's the latest Earful of Dirt episode if anyone is interested: https://podcasts.apple.com/us/podcast/w ... 0457215289

WCR, also on the NBCSN broadcasted games you had an MLR commercial that came on at least twice during those games. First TV ad campaign, so hopefully we've caught some of the casuals that had limited exposure to an MLR team or ExPats that didn't know.

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Re: Major League Rugby

Postby sk 88 » Wed, 20 Nov 2019, 20:21

Anyone else notice the new name for our friends in Denver is the C.Raptors ???

Made me laugh anyway.

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Re: Major League Rugby

Postby Working Class Rugger » Thu, 21 Nov 2019, 01:30

sk 88 wrote:Anyone else notice the new name for our friends in Denver is the C.Raptors ???

Made me laugh anyway.


About time and should assist them in appealing to a wider audience.

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Re: Major League Rugby

Postby Raven » Thu, 21 Nov 2019, 15:27

Juan Manuel Leguizamon (ARG) in talks with an MLR club...

Santiago Arata (URU) may be playing his last season in the USA: http://www.americasrugbynews.com/2019/1 ... ago-arata/

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Re: Major League Rugby

Postby Tobar » Thu, 21 Nov 2019, 17:54

I’m just surprised he is even staying at Houston. Great news all around.

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Re: Major League Rugby

Postby ihateblazers » Sat, 23 Nov 2019, 03:39

Does anyone know what type of arrangements the New York management/ownership has made for their players in terms of living arrangements and expenses? Are they getting guys corporate jobs through connections?Just curious considering the levels of salaries at the moment in MLR versus the cost of living in a city like NY.

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Re: Major League Rugby

Postby TheStroBro » Sat, 23 Nov 2019, 05:43

It's limited. The best job placement program in the league is NOLA.

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Re: Major League Rugby

Postby Tobar » Sat, 23 Nov 2019, 20:11

ihateblazers wrote:Does anyone know what type of arrangements the New York management/ownership has made for their players in terms of living arrangements and expenses? Are they getting guys corporate jobs through connections?Just curious considering the levels of salaries at the moment in MLR versus the cost of living in a city like NY.


Around 8 players were living together in Harlem in a place owned by Kennedy. Quite a few others were already in NYC and have a main job (such as Petri and Brakeley).

Players also had side jobs either as coaches/community organizers or for Kennedy’s construction company.

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Re: Major League Rugby

Postby ihateblazers » Sun, 24 Nov 2019, 06:05

Ahh that makes sense then. I'm thinking of it in the context of a bay area team which has similar high costs. There would probably need to be a owner who can make similar arrangements.

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Re: Major League Rugby

Postby Tobar » Sun, 24 Nov 2019, 18:03

Yeah Bay Area is even worse than NYC if that’s possible. At the very least, you’d have to expect that the training facility will be further away from the most expensive part of the city so that players can live in more affordable areas.

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Re: Major League Rugby

Postby TheStroBro » Tue, 26 Nov 2019, 15:21

Here's the latest episode of Earful of Dirt: https://podcasts.apple.com/us/podcast/m ... 0457866539

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Re: Major League Rugby

Postby victorsra » Wed, 27 Nov 2019, 03:52

Brazil's number 1 referee Henrique Platais is living in Atlanta (because of his job, not rugby) and will be one of the MLR referees. Very nice.
Brazilian Rugby News: www.portaldorugby.com.br

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Re: Major League Rugby

Postby thatrugbyguy » Wed, 27 Nov 2019, 06:56

That will be good experience for him.

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Re: Major League Rugby

Postby Edgar » Wed, 27 Nov 2019, 08:27

Interesting blog in the Guardian about the status of MLR, with suggestions Colorado may go, perhaps even form a rival league, while Chicago could become the next expansion franchise, though Dallas and the LA Loyals are apparently waiting in the wings. I thought the East & West conferences were already confirmed, whereas this excerpt applies a conditional:

The Raptors do not just own Infinity Park, the first rugby specific stadium in the US. Arising from their prominent role in moves to create a league before and after the failure of PRO Rugby, which lasted one season in 2016, they own significant intellectual property including the Major League Rugby name. Sources said the Raptors could form a new league in competition with a renamed MLR. Colorado and MLR did not respond to requests for comment.

If Colorado do not withdraw or another team takes their place, the new teams will enter a competition split into six-strong eastern and western conferences. More teams wait in the wings, including the Los Angeles Loyals, voted in instead of the LA Coast operation which announced itself in July 2018. The Loyals, driven by Australian investment, have not announced a formal entry date.

https://amp.theguardian.com/sport/blog/ ... ssion=true


Meanwhile, the following figures seem reasonable enough for just the second year of competition. If they can continue to build on this over the next decade, and develop the junior rugby program, that will put the US in a good position to host the 12th edition of the Rugby World Cup, as they are widely tipped to do, and the 2030s might just turn out to be the decade the Eagles join the ranks of the international heavyweights.

The 2019 final attracted just over 500,000 viewers on CBS but crowds remain small: the double champion Seattle Seawolves and San Diego Legion, beaten finalists in year two, attract the biggest regular-season attendances at around 4,000. Other teams, including the loudly ballyhooed Rugby United New York, lag behind, many playing in minor league baseball parks they struggle to halfway fill.

Nonu, Ioane and Ranger will join New York signings Ben Foden and Matthieu Bastareaud in MLR, marquee former internationals in squads nonetheless subject to a $500,000 salary cap that is dramatically low in comparison to wage bills in Super Rugby, the Gallagher Premiership and the Top 14.

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Re: Major League Rugby

Postby Working Class Rugger » Wed, 27 Nov 2019, 09:02

Edgar wrote:Interesting blog in the Guardian about the status of MLR, with suggestions Colorado may go, perhaps even form a rival league, while Chicago could become the next expansion franchise, though Dallas and the LA Loyals are apparently waiting in the wings. I thought the East & West conferences were already confirmed, whereas this excerpt applies a conditional:

The Raptors do not just own Infinity Park, the first rugby specific stadium in the US. Arising from their prominent role in moves to create a league before and after the failure of PRO Rugby, which lasted one season in 2016, they own significant intellectual property including the Major League Rugby name. Sources said the Raptors could form a new league in competition with a renamed MLR. Colorado and MLR did not respond to requests for comment.

If Colorado do not withdraw or another team takes their place, the new teams will enter a competition split into six-strong eastern and western conferences. More teams wait in the wings, including the Los Angeles Loyals, voted in instead of the LA Coast operation which announced itself in July 2018. The Loyals, driven by Australian investment, have not announced a formal entry date.

https://amp.theguardian.com/sport/blog/ ... ssion=true


Meanwhile, the following figures seem reasonable enough for just the second year of competition. If they can continue to build on this over the next decade, and develop the junior rugby program, that will put the US in a good position to host the 12th edition of the Rugby World Cup, as they are widely tipped to do, and the 2030s might just turn out to be the decade the Eagles join the ranks of the international heavyweights.

The 2019 final attracted just over 500,000 viewers on CBS but crowds remain small: the double champion Seattle Seawolves and San Diego Legion, beaten finalists in year two, attract the biggest regular-season attendances at around 4,000. Other teams, including the loudly ballyhooed Rugby United New York, lag behind, many playing in minor league baseball parks they struggle to halfway fill.

Nonu, Ioane and Ranger will join New York signings Ben Foden and Matthieu Bastareaud in MLR, marquee former internationals in squads nonetheless subject to a $500,000 salary cap that is dramatically low in comparison to wage bills in Super Rugby, the Gallagher Premiership and the Top 14.


The Raptors are quoted via Rugby Wrap Up that they are not leaving and will be playing in the upcoming season. There's been some speculation around this. Some of it about whether they may be reaching their ceiling in comparison to their competitors in regards to their ability to grow their level of professionalism. That they may not have the means to match others who want to accelerate things.

Others have suggested that this is all a little outdated. Just thinking about it now. As in as I type this. The rebranding to Colorado could be an effort not only to appeal to a wider audience but to entice extra investment. Sponsoring or investing in a Colorado franchise is far more attractive than Glendale.

Regarding the ratings. the Championship game figure is encouraging. I'd be interested to find out what the season average was. I know in Australia generally speaking the crowd for the Grand Finals tend to be 2 - 2.5 times larger than the in season average. Which would put it somewhere between 125-250k a game. Though I'm likely way off. But that would be great if close. As that would make TV negotiations a lot easier. Crowds are an issue. They didn't decline too much from season 1. They should improve this season. I expect SD and Seattle to set the standard. I'd be shocked if with their team SD don't go close to selling out every game. Houston should improve. Hopefully Utah as well.

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Re: Major League Rugby

Postby Tobar » Wed, 27 Nov 2019, 14:25

I’ve heard from some people that Colorado tried to exercise its escape clause but then treatises they would basically have to give up everything to so they quickly changed their minds.

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Re: Major League Rugby

Postby snapper37 » Wed, 27 Nov 2019, 17:38

Tobar wrote:I’ve heard from some people that Colorado tried to exercise its escape clause but then treatises they would basically have to give up everything to so they quickly changed their minds.



Why would they want to leave? other than their mismanagement

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Re: Major League Rugby

Postby Coloradoan » Wed, 27 Nov 2019, 18:26

Working Class Rugger wrote:
Edgar wrote:Interesting blog in the Guardian about the status of MLR, with suggestions Colorado may go, perhaps even form a rival league, while Chicago could become the next expansion franchise, though Dallas and the LA Loyals are apparently waiting in the wings. I thought the East & West conferences were already confirmed, whereas this excerpt applies a conditional:

The Raptors do not just own Infinity Park, the first rugby specific stadium in the US. Arising from their prominent role in moves to create a league before and after the failure of PRO Rugby, which lasted one season in 2016, they own significant intellectual property including the Major League Rugby name. Sources said the Raptors could form a new league in competition with a renamed MLR. Colorado and MLR did not respond to requests for comment.

If Colorado do not withdraw or another team takes their place, the new teams will enter a competition split into six-strong eastern and western conferences. More teams wait in the wings, including the Los Angeles Loyals, voted in instead of the LA Coast operation which announced itself in July 2018. The Loyals, driven by Australian investment, have not announced a formal entry date.

https://amp.theguardian.com/sport/blog/ ... ssion=true


Meanwhile, the following figures seem reasonable enough for just the second year of competition. If they can continue to build on this over the next decade, and develop the junior rugby program, that will put the US in a good position to host the 12th edition of the Rugby World Cup, as they are widely tipped to do, and the 2030s might just turn out to be the decade the Eagles join the ranks of the international heavyweights.

The 2019 final attracted just over 500,000 viewers on CBS but crowds remain small: the double champion Seattle Seawolves and San Diego Legion, beaten finalists in year two, attract the biggest regular-season attendances at around 4,000. Other teams, including the loudly ballyhooed Rugby United New York, lag behind, many playing in minor league baseball parks they struggle to halfway fill.

Nonu, Ioane and Ranger will join New York signings Ben Foden and Matthieu Bastareaud in MLR, marquee former internationals in squads nonetheless subject to a $500,000 salary cap that is dramatically low in comparison to wage bills in Super Rugby, the Gallagher Premiership and the Top 14.


The Raptors are quoted via Rugby Wrap Up that they are not leaving and will be playing in the upcoming season. There's been some speculation around this. Some of it about whether they may be reaching their ceiling in comparison to their competitors in regards to their ability to grow their level of professionalism. That they may not have the means to match others who want to accelerate things.

Others have suggested that this is all a little outdated. Just thinking about it now. As in as I type this. The rebranding to Colorado could be an effort not only to appeal to a wider audience but to entice extra investment. Sponsoring or investing in a Colorado franchise is far more attractive than Glendale.

Regarding the ratings. the Championship game figure is encouraging. I'd be interested to find out what the season average was. I know in Australia generally speaking the crowd for the Grand Finals tend to be 2 - 2.5 times larger than the in season average. Which would put it somewhere between 125-250k a game. Though I'm likely way off. But that would be great if close. As that would make TV negotiations a lot easier. Crowds are an issue. They didn't decline too much from season 1. They should improve this season. I expect SD and Seattle to set the standard. I'd be shocked if with their team SD don't go close to selling out every game. Houston should improve. Hopefully Utah as well.


The final was on CBS, what people in Australia would call free to air. The other nationally televised matches were on CBS Sports Network, a pretty niche cable (what people in Australia would call pay TV) channel that does not have great distribution even in comparison to NBCSN/Fox Sports. So the audiences on CBS SN would be much smaller than that.

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Re: Major League Rugby

Postby RugbyLiebe » Mon, 09 Dec 2019, 15:47

Major League Rugby has appointed a new commissioner ahead of its third season, with former Dallas Mavericks executive George Killebrew replacing Dean Howes.

After months of speculation about his future, Howes has been ousted by the MLR team owners who want a more rapid and expansive growth for the start-up rugby union competition. Howes had adopted a slow and steady approach to grow the league..


https://www.sportbusiness.com/news/kill ... is-ousted/
How to grow rugby worldwide?
Look at the world ranking in July. Teams ranked 1-10 have to play one team from 11-20 (they don't play in a regular competition) away the next year. 11-20 play 21-30 away and so on. Yes, it really is that simple.

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Re: Major League Rugby

Postby welshdragon2000 » Mon, 09 Dec 2019, 17:38

This seems like a really good appointment to me, hopefully we’ll see him make a difference

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Re: Major League Rugby

Postby sk 88 » Mon, 09 Dec 2019, 19:12

to be sustainable you do really need to "sprint" in the early years to at least 5k attendances. You can sustain for a long time with tight budgeting and a wage cap at that level but not at less than 2k per game.

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Re: Major League Rugby

Postby Tobar » Mon, 09 Dec 2019, 19:55

And having a good base of supporters is like compound interest. The earlier you get them, the more their value multiplies over time.

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Re: Major League Rugby

Postby Coloradoan » Mon, 09 Dec 2019, 20:04

sk 88 wrote:to be sustainable you do really need to "sprint" in the early years to at least 5k attendances. You can sustain for a long time with tight budgeting and a wage cap at that level but not at less than 2k per game.


My concern with MLR is the lack of a wage cap. Teams in startup sports leagues are already up against it and regularly fold and letting teams go on presumably large spending sprees will just exacerbate that.

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Re: Major League Rugby

Postby TheStroBro » Mon, 09 Dec 2019, 21:05

The league constitution and franchise agreements are designed to make this thing last. A lot of the newer owners have significantly more capital that they're willing to invest behind the league than the early ones. Honestly, kind of surprised we haven't seen a full sell of a team. Several teams have taken on new investors though and the current demand for a Franchise license is leading to significantly higher franchise fees. The issue is really developing the sustainable fan base that will buy tickets, that's one thing the MLS really never had to deal with.

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Re: Major League Rugby

Postby TheStroBro » Tue, 10 Dec 2019, 20:16

Juan Manuel Leguizamon has signed for the Seawolves.

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