Last season the Jets and the Giants broke ground on their brand new stadium, there was only one problem. They never decided on a name.
The fact that two professional football teams in the New York area couldn’t find and agree on a sponsor to their stadium in time for the opening season was rather embarrassing. Of course all it takes is a basic understanding of the dynamics of the relationship between the Jets and Giants and their fans to understand why it would take so long to agree on a sponsor.
The old stadium was called Giants Stadium, because it was originally only their stadium until they allowed the Jets to move in as tenants. This new stadium was a joint venture, a 50/50 split of ownership by the two teams. With one team called the Jets and the other having the nickname of Big Blue, what could possibly make more sense than having JetBlue as the sponsor?
Well, anyone who knows the slightest bit about the aforementioned dynamics of the relationship between these two teams understands the Giants were never going to agree to a name that would put the Jets first.
The Giants organization, players and especially their fans loved to put the Jets down by simple stating, ‘you don’t even have your own stadium,’ so there was no way they were about to give the Jets top billing in the naming of the new stadium. Add that to the fact that the two organizations just plain don’t like each other and it’s no wonder they went so long without a name, however that doesn’t make it any less embarrassing.
But it looks like all that is finally about to change and if we are lucky enough to have a football season this year, we will also have a new name to call the stadium that houses both the Jets and Giants, as today the Sports Business Journal reported that, “MetLife is in advanced discussions with New Meadowlands Stadium to upgrade its corner sponsorship at the year-old facility to a full naming-rights deal.
“A source close to the deal described the negotiations as ‘very advanced, but not complete.”
According to SBJ, the deal is expected to be worth “between $17-18 million a year,” which is far short of the believed original price of $30 million the teams were reportedly seeking, but it appears the embarrassment of not having a name at all far outweighs them not getting quite as much money as they hoped for.
With the stadium playing host to the Super Bowl in 2014 it was imperative that they get this deal done well before then, but for the sake of fans, announcers and reporters it was just as important to give us an actual name to call the stadium right away. Because honestly the New Meadowlands Stadium or NMS, just looks and sounds silly.
As the old saying goes, better late than never right?