After the Monday Night Football debacle last night, ESPN commentator and NFL legend Steve Young went off on the NFL and the replacement refs. He said the NFL doesn’t care about the replacement refs because no matter how bad they are, the demand for the game will never change.
Here’s the transcript, and the video from Big Lead Sports is below (emphasis ours):
Young: Let me just go right at this. There’s a lot of people in the league that would rather break the union. There’s a lot of people who don’t feel like officiating is on-field personnel, they feel like it’s a commodity. But more importantly, everything about the NFL is inelastic for demand. There’s nothing they could do to hurt the demand for the game. So the bottom line is, they don’t care. Player safety? Doesn’t matter in this case. Bring Division III officials? Doesn’t matter. Because in the end, you’re still going to watch the game, we’re going to all complain and moan and gripe and say there’s all these problems and all the coaches will say it, the players will say it — it doesn’t matter. Go ahead, gripe all you want. I’m going to rest. Let them eat cake.
Stuart Scott: But we’re talking about the marquee game of every week, Monday Night Football, so why doesn’t it matter?
Young: Because it’s inelastic! There’s nothing that changes the demand for the NFL. So they want to break the union, or they want to send a message to them. They don’t care about player safety in the case of bringing Division III officials on because it doesn’t affect the demand for the game. If it affected they desire for the game, they’d come up with a few million dollars.
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