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'96 Tears
Leigh Montville
December 30, 1996
It's a sad day for sports when salary caps replace party hats on New Year's Day
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December 30, 1996

'96 Tears

It's a sad day for sports when salary caps replace party hats on New Year's Day

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"You should be paid if you produce," Selig said. "That's the American way."

"Money up front, that's the American way," Falk countered.

Noted sports sociologists Dan Dierdorf, Tim McCarver and Billy Packer said the situation is another indication of the moral decay of our time. Dierdorf linked it to the prevent defense, McCarver to the designated hitter and Packer to freshman eligibility. Ferdie Pacheco, the fight doctor, noted that "women are fighting on undercards, 17 different men are supposed to be the heavyweight champion, and now the New Year wants big bucks. Where does it end?"

"There was no great cash payout for those hard, tough years, like 1941 and 1934," The New York Times said in an editorial. "Money was the furthest thing from the mind during those psychedelic years in the '60s. Even during the Me-First '80s, the New Year didn't arrive with a salary demand. Our advice is to hang tough. We shall see what we shall see."

No one has seen the New Year during the controversy. It is rumored to be a good-looking year, but no one can say for sure. A statement, however, was released by the Old Year: "I just hope everything can be resolved in time and I can leave my post at midnight, December 31. I don't want to take sides. I suppose I'm like everyone else—my wish for 1997 simply is that it will be a Happy New Year."

More to follow on this story.

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