Baseball is the only major professional sport in the United States that has no salary cap. It’s time for the other leagues to join the party.
Playing fair and making sure every team has a chance to compete is true at all levels. Some would find it unreasonable for the NFL, NBA and NHL to have no salary cap, but I’m here to argue in favor of no cap restrictions.
The MLB is the best example of why it can work. Just look at the recent championship games in all of the major sports leagues the past 10 years, starting with baseball.
In the NBA, it’s been the same ole song and dance with the Golden State Warriors repeating and winning three out of four against the Cleveland Cavaliers. Beyond that, we saw the Los Angeles Lakers win back to back and the Miami Heat win back to back with an additional two losses.
The San Antonio Spurs made multiple trips, cashing in on one of them. Only four other teams (Boston Celtics, Dallas Mavericks, Oklahoma City Thunder, Orlando Magic) played in the NBA Finals
It’s not much different in the NHL. Two teams have two Stanley Cups (Chicago Blackhawks, Los Angeles Kings) and another winning three (Pittsburgh Penguins). Going 1-2 was the Boston Bruins. A total of 14 different teams have played for the Cup.
Finally, the NFL. We’re all too familiar with the New England Patriots, playing in four Super Bowls, winning two. Only three other champions (Denver Broncos, Pittsburgh Steelers, Seattle Seahawks) went twice, each getting just one ring. Again, 14 different teams represented themselves in the Big Game.
So what should you make of these findings? Simple, a salary cap doesn’t matter.
Teams will spend funds regardless of the value of their franchise. Even with the cap restrictions, the good teams still stack up talent by paying those players cheaper and taking them at a discounted rate.
My personal belief is teams that can recruit talent or entice their current players to stay with more money as opposed to letting them jump ship for less on a more accomplished team, have a better chance to compete. Still not convinced? Check this.
Over the past decade, the New York Yankees were the only championship team first in payroll spent. Half of the teams that won a World Series were 10th or higher in payroll (11th, 12th, 17th, 17th).
The cliche it takes money to make money is true, but how much? You see, the richest people in the world aren’t rich because they spend so much of their money. They’re smart with their money.
Not every team that rakes in the dough will automatically spend it. Building a powerful franchise is more than just paying out huge contracts.
It’s proven that a dynasty is built more so through quality drafting but most importantly great coaching. Blowing large quantities of cash isn’t the recipe for sustainable success, rather it’s short term gratification that doesn’t always pay off.
Salary cap or not, the good teams find a way to win. Paying players that deserve their share of the wealth without having to gut their current team only breeds more winners, making the three leagues restricted by the cap even more competitive. Let the bidding begin.