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72 Wash. & Lee L. Rev. 573 (2015)
Regulating Professional Sports Leagues

handle is hein.journals/waslee72 and id is 599 raw text is: 

Regulating Professional Sports Leagues

                                               Nathaniel Grow*


    Four monopoly sports leagues currently dominate the U.S.
professional sports industry. Although federal antitrust law-the
primary   source of regulation governing    the industry-would
normally   be   expected  to  provide  a   significant check   on
anticompetitive, monopolistic behavior, it has failed to effectively
govern the leagues due to both their well-entrenched monopoly
status and the unique level of coordination necessary among their
respective teams. Consequently, the four leagues today each, in
many respects, enjoy unregulated monopoly status in what is
estimated to be a $67 billion industry.
    As one might expect, these leagues use their largely unchecked
monopoly power to injure the public in various ways. By restricting
expansion, leagues create an artificial shortage of franchises
enabling their existing teams to extract billions of dollars in
stadium subsidies from U.S. taxpayers. Similarly, by preventing
their franchises from individually licensing their broadcast rights
nationally or over the Internet, the leagues are able to demand
significantly higher fees from television networks and consumers
than would be obtainable in a competitive marketplace while at the
same time subjecting viewers to arcane and outdated blackout
     Unfortunately, existing proposals in the academic literature to
remedy this undesirable state of affairs are both impractical and
unlikely to be effective. This Article instead proposes a surprisingly

    *  Assistant Professor of Legal Studies, Terry College of Business,
University of Georgia. I would like to thank Marc Edelman, Gordon Hylton,
Matt Mitten, Matt Parlow, Geoff Rapp, Tim Samples, Michael Waxman, and my
fellow participants at the Marquette University Law School Sports Law Works-
in-Progress Conference for supplying helpful comments on earlier versions of
this Article.


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