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Tom_In_Cincy
07-22-2011, 05:26 PM
Billiards Digest Front Page News item.

"In its latest statement, released July 22, the players association states, “[Behrman’s] past history [with] this and other events does not give players much faith in his statement that the players will be paid at the event.”

See link for more details.

http://www.billiardsdigest.com/new_news/display_article?id=1398

jjinfla
07-22-2011, 08:26 PM
I don't think the APB players really understand how the money to pay the players is generated and what other assundry expenses are involved in running the tournament. Certain expenses must be paid when the vendor supplies them. Such as hall rental, pool table rental and delivery, licenses & permits, food delivery etc.

If 200 players pay an entry fee of $500 each for $100,000 and the payout is $150,000 where do the players think the extra $50,000, plus other expenses, comes from?

If Mika was paid late in 2008 why did he play in 2009? If he was paid late again in 2009 why did he play in the 10 ball tournament? Evidently he must believe that he will eventually be paid. If he doesn't believe that then he is a fool. And Mika doesn't appear to be a fool.

If the APB players don't show up, and attendance is low and the money does not come in and Barry has trouble paying then the APB will have accomplished nothing except a self fullfilling prophecy.

Will they help pool? No. Will they help themselves? No. Will they endear themselves to the fans? I really don't think they care.

Instead of boycotting the tournament the players should all take an active part in promoting it and doing all in their power to make it succeed. Talk it up and get people to attend. Afterall, they can't expect Earl to do all the work for them. If Barry succeeds then the players succeed.

Players just seem too self centered to me. Time for them to wake up and sell some tickets and fill the seats.

Rich R.
07-22-2011, 09:30 PM
<div class="ubbcode-block"><div class="ubbcode-header">Originally Posted By: Tom_In_Cincy</div><div class="ubbcode-body">Billiards Digest Front Page News item.

"In its latest statement, released July 22, the players association states, “[Behrman’s] past history [with] this and other events does not give players much faith in his statement that the players will be paid at the event.”

See link for more details.

http://www.billiardsdigest.com/new_news/display_article?id=1398 </div></div>
The players have a lot of nerve bringing up past history and faith. In the past, some players have not shown up for the Open, walked out on matches because they didn't think they could win and missed matches because it interferred with their golf games. Those are just things I know have happened in the last few years. I'm sure there are other things.

The players should be working with Barry not boycotting him. If anything, they should be boycotting their sponsors until they pony up some sponsorship for the Open.

Frankly, I don't believe more than handful of players will boycot, especially in light of the great TV deal recently signed by AccuStats. The player sponsors will want their players on TV around the world. The players without sponsors have a chance to get some if they appear on TV. The players would be stupid to boycott.

No matter what happens, I will be there to support Barry's efforts. I don't care if Barry plays Shannon in the finals. If players decide to boycott, I will never buy another product from their sponsors and I will steer all of my friends clear of those companies.

Fran Crimi
07-23-2011, 04:22 PM
Rich or anyone, take a guess.....

Where do you think the $150,000 comes from that Barry says can only be raised at the event? Anyone here willing to take a crack at it and speculate?

Here's Barry's quote from the press release:

<span style="color: #000099">“Most of the sponsorship monies do not arrive until the week of the Championship,” Behrman said in a July 14 statement released to AZBilliards.com, “and so there is no way to escrow monies in advance that are not available to me. Indeed, upwards of $150,000 in revenues are generated during the week of the event, and it is those monies that provide the bulk of the prize monies.”</span>

jjinfla
07-23-2011, 05:35 PM
Fran, you sound like you are doubting Barry.

Hopefully, besides the player entry fees, he gets money from selling tickets to the spectators. He also gets money from vendors who want to set up their displays. He most likely sells advertising to distributors who want to put up a banner touting their products. He probably also gets money from the concession stands. Now if he can get a few pennies from each ppv video that will be sent worldwide he will be on easy street for a long time.

Tom_In_Cincy
07-23-2011, 06:21 PM
Fran is correct, the majority of the money for the US Open 9 Ball tournament comes from entry fees. Barry adds money from what he makes during the tournament. Spectator turnout is a huge chunk of change but not compared to the entry fees.

All Barry needs to do is make sure the money is their at the end and pay the players IN FULL.

The ABP wants assurances that this will happen. That's not asking too much, IMO, but a Boycott is not going to accomplish their goal. 40-60 ABP pros, not playing, will not make the tournament a failure. Now if 200 boycott that would be disaster.

That will mean the women pros and other non-ABP pros would also boycott. Maybe there is a chance of this happening. I doubt it very seriously.

Rich R.
07-24-2011, 04:53 AM
<div class="ubbcode-block"><div class="ubbcode-header">Originally Posted By: Tom_In_Cincy</div><div class="ubbcode-body">Fran is correct, the majority of the money for the US Open 9 Ball tournament comes from entry fees. Barry adds money from what he makes during the tournament. Spectator turnout is a huge chunk of change but not compared to the entry fees.

All Barry needs to do is make sure the money is their at the end and pay the players IN FULL.

The ABP wants assurances that this will happen. That's not asking too much, IMO, but a Boycott is not going to accomplish their goal. 40-60 ABP pros, not playing, will not make the tournament a failure. Now if 200 boycott that would be disaster.

That will mean the women pros and other non-ABP pros would also boycott. Maybe there is a chance of this happening. I doubt it very seriously.

</div></div>
I have to agree with Tom. I have always thought that a huge chunk of the prize fund comes from player entry fees and ticket sales. That is why it would be impossible for Barry to put the money in escrow.

I also agree that a boycott is not the answer. I don't think it will happen but if a successful boycott is carried out, what does it accomplish? I may ruin Barry and end the tournament for ever. With all of his faults, Barry is one of pools biggest supporters and he runs a 35 year old event. I don't think that Barry and the Open is good for any of us, most of all the players.

jjinfla
07-24-2011, 06:37 AM
One good thing about the ABP announcing a Boycott so early is that it will generate a lot of free publicity about the US Open. Now if they keep responding to each other every 3-4 days it will continue to peak the interest of the fans.

I imagine it would cost Barry a bunch of money to pay for ads in the magazines. Eventually, of course, he will have to pay to place some ads in the magazines.

The problem that Barry faces is that he is running the US Open as a business and in the end he wants to show a profit. He is about the only TD I have heard of who actually wants to make money running a tournament. Imagine that.

jjinfla
07-24-2011, 07:15 AM
I see that there is another response to the ABP from BB. One has to admit that he does write a nice letter. He probably had his daughter write it. LOL

So, Mika received his money. The APB forgot to mention that the payout for the Masters was based on a turnout of at least 128 and only 57 showed up. Gee, how could the APB not understand what that means. Are they that stupid?

Corey says he doesn't know what the ABP is doing and he will play in the US Open.

So it looks like Archer is just making stuff up. Evidently he didn't communicate with several players before saying they will boycott the US Open. Didn't he have a players meeting and get them to sign an agreement to boycott before he made the announcement?

Right now I would say that all the ABP players will play in the US Open except for Archer and Mika. Good riddance. Especially since Mika knew he would, or already had, received his money prior to the boycott announcement.

Fran Crimi
07-24-2011, 07:59 AM
I think the players are just trying to get Barry to be realistic about what he can afford to pay out in prize money and talk hasn't gotten the job done. Besides, it's not good business for a promoter to not know how much he's actually going to pay the players until the event is done.

Seeding is another issue that they have to decide. Mike Zuglin won't seed players in Turning Stone, but Mike doesn't care if his events are BCA points events or not (his added money doesn't qualify him for WPA sanctioning). So if someday it's decided that an event must be a seeded event to qualify as a BCA points event, Turning Stone will be off the list. Turning Stone has always been set up as a finale to the Joss Tour.

Nobody likes making unpopular choices. I remember back when the WPBA decided to break away from Don Mackey and the PBTA. I was right in the middle of that. In fact, I was the one who read the letter of secession by the WPBA from the PBTA at their board meeting to them. Macky hit the roof. I still remember his words after I read it. He yelled, "You can't quit because we're kicking you out!" The whole billiard world told us that we were crazy and would fall flat on our faces without the backing of the men. The WPBA went on to form the Classic Tour that gave them a successful run of a good 15 years and with ESPN coverage. Not too shabby for an unpopular decision.

jjinfla
07-24-2011, 01:46 PM
Now there is a reply to BB from someone at the ABP. I say someone because it is not signed. Not very professional. I would expect that a "Professional" organization would send a letter on their letterhead and have the board members listed on it at the very least.

Then there is also a response from Corey Deuel. He sounds confused; like he was blindsided by this whole boycott. But at least he signed his letter.

One side says Mika did not receive his $10,000 payment; the other side says he did. There can only be one correct answer. Time for Mika to respond and let everyone know whether he did, or did not, receive his money.

I think these guys are just practicing to become politicians. Either that or clowns. Hard to tell the difference lately.

ABP is not being realistic in their demands to have all the money received from players to be put in escrow. They know that money received from the players is used to set up the tournament and that money received during the tournament is used to pay off the players.

Perhaps Barry is right, move the tournament to his pool room and lower the amount added. Less headache for BB and the APB would be happy. Can't think that the players would like it though.

So what is it that the APB is guaranteeing that they will do to help BB? Are they guaranteeing that all those APB players on the list will go to the US Open? Or are they just making demands?

It will be interesting to see who speaks next.

This could be the death knell for men's billiards.

Scott Lee
07-24-2011, 09:41 PM
Jake...BB has paid MOST of the players on-site, every year, before they leave VA. A few have had to wait. I posted an interesting perspective on this over on AzB. I'm gonna go copy it, and repost here for those to read, who didn't see it over there.

You need to look at this from another perspective...that of an independent contractor, which is what professional poolplayers are (as am I, btw). An independent contractor is responsible for paying all up-front costs associated with whatever work they are contracting to provide...in this case, to show up to a tournament, and play in said event. IF they manage to finish high enough, they will be paid for 'performance on their contract'. If they fail to finish high enough, they will be S.O.L. and have no recourse to get reimbursed for their expenses (this is the "gamble" a tournament player takes, just to enter and play). In this specific case, Barry has been late in paying SOME of the highest finishers. The truth remains, though, that the majority of 'cashing' players are paid immediately after the event. Should Barry be able to pay ALL the players immediately? Yes...on that point we agree. That said, for an event that has run 35 years, and has attained 'legendary' status around the world, Barry does a pretty good job, and offers perks to many of the players. If I won $40k and knew I was going to get it, even if I had to wait 30/60/90 days, I would be happy (perhaps not as happy as if I was paid now...but still happy).

I work, as an independent contractor, doing my shows at colleges and military bases. I always ASK to be paid at the conclusion of the event. However, some schools payment procedures do not allow this, and I get paid usually within 30 days. The military is different. They NEVER pay upfront, and often take 60-90 days to pay, because of red tape paperwork and government process. I will tell you, quite frankly, I never mind "being owed" by these entities, because I KNOW I am going to get paid...eventually. Barry has never failed to pay...only to pay some players on time. That said, I will give him the benefit of the doubt once again, and see what happens this year. The pro players should do the same, imo.

Scott Lee

jjinfla
07-25-2011, 05:52 AM
I agree Scott,

I just think the ABP picked the wrong battle to wage. The US Open has been around longer than a lot of the players have lived.
Evidently, Barry must be doing something right. And, the US Open is still a work in progress. From when he started it in 1976 with only 16 players to where now he may be elevating it to a world wide presentation with TV rights and pay per view. Don't the ABP players see what a great opportunity this may be to them? Have they no vision?

I too am in independent contractor - I work in real estate. I pay all my fees, dues, supplies, travel expenses up front out of my own pocket. I may work with a client for months and if we don't go to closing it is all for nothing. When I close a home I receive a check, not in my name, but in the Broker's name. I have to take it to him. Do you think he then hands me my commission in cash? Nope, I have to wait another week to receive my check. But that is the nature of the business. I don't have to work in real estate. Hmmm, that's an idea that is sounding pretty good lately.

Fran Crimi
07-25-2011, 07:31 AM
Guys, I think the players know that they are independent contractors. If you don't get a W-2 in the mail, you're an independent contractor. There are lots of us out there.

There is a very long history here with the U.S. Open and there are several issues involved. The problem is that there are so many unknowns, such as, what will the real prize fund be? How much is actually being guaranteed? What is a reasonable amount of time to wait for payment? Is 7 months reasonable? Independent contractors especially need to know this because they are not on a salary. It is essential that this information be accurate so they can figure out their own financial possibilities before coming to the event.

When a tournament organizer decreases a published prize fund after the players have arrived at the event, you can expect that players will not be happy. The other issue is of course, when the players will be paid. As far as I can tell, I've never seen a notice on the U.S. Open's web site announcing that there is a possibility that the top few players may not be paid right away, or when they can expect payment.

Barry is very skilled at making no promises. That is his way. For some people, it doesn't matter that Barry does this. It even amuses some. But the independent contractors who play pool for a living need more assurances that what they see is actually what they get. And they want to know before they leave their homes to go to the event ---- when they can expect their money.

Sure, the line "based on a 256 player field" is perfectly legitimate to state, BUT, the promoter has to be consistent about that. People can count how many players are there. If the prize fund needs to be reduced, then it should be reduced proportionately.

Rich R.
07-25-2011, 08:37 AM
I don't think there is a true right or wrong in this situation and there is definitely not a win or lose. If they don't work this out everybody loses.

Cools heads, from both side, have to sit down and work things out whether or not it means delayed or reduced payments.

jjinfla
07-25-2011, 08:57 AM
Fran,

Of course 7 months to receive payment is not reasonable, unless there is a reasonable reason for the late payment.

Every pool player knows what "X amount added if X amount sign up" means. You don't get the signups - you don't get the added money.

How many times has the US Open had a full 256 entrants? I thought most of them had a lot less. So the added could be an advertizing ploy.

How does the WPBA pay their players? Do any receive cash or is it all by check? Do they receive the check when they are done? Or is it mailed out later?

A few years ago the WPBA stopped announcing how much players received. I have no idea what the payout is now or if they announce the amount.

Their new unimproved website is uninformative and leaves a lot to be desired.

Fran Crimi
07-25-2011, 11:17 AM
Jake, the WPBA is in a different situation because they produce their own events. I can tell you how it was done for as long as I know: The prize money is always in the bank in total prior to the event start and the players get paid at the event by check, and the checks don't bounce.

The players all know how much the prize fund is well ahead of time. As for it not being announced, I would guess that it's because it's not a whole lot of money and just advertises how poor our industry is. That's not a good forumla for trying to attract outside sponsorship.

Tom_In_Cincy
07-25-2011, 12:37 PM
IMO the 'marketing' of the US Open has to focus on the HUGE prize money offered the players. This international field of 256 players has to have a world class marketing ploy of a prize fund only worthy of a BB produciton.

So the ads/flyers have to have some pretty big numbers (Added $$$) to attract the world's best 9 ball players.

Adding the wording that would make the flyers/ads more accurate is an added amount based on GATE/Entry fees and Sponsorship actual NOT potential.

If there are only 200 players then the added/entry fees would be reduced by at least 56 x 500 or $28,000 in entry fees and apporpriately added $50,000 by 21% = $11,000 or a total of $39,000 less prize money.
Prize fund would only total 200 x $500 + $39000 = 139,000 instead of $128,000 plus $50,000 = $178,000

The difference would show that BB did not live up to the billing, but still held the tournament. Players would still be paid, as always.

Fran Crimi
07-25-2011, 02:27 PM
Right, Tom. The only thing I think would be a problem (which brings us back to square one) is adding the wording that it is an added amount based on the GATE. That's information that the promoter generally wants to keep to himself, and understandably so.

Then we may as well ask him to include vender revenue (if any) and hotel kick-back revenue (if any) as well. There's no way a promoter would be willing to share that info --- For a multitude of reasons, one being it's proprietary information that could prove very helpful to competitive promoters. The U.S. Open is a business, afterall, and even though the name is proprietary, the promoter is going to protect himself and his event more than just the name.

Also, every player would love to know how much a promoter walks away with for himself at the end of the day. That's one number promoters will guard with their lives and would rather people don't come close to calculating.

Tom_In_Cincy
07-25-2011, 02:42 PM
Oh, Fran, this is so true and what is really sick about the money involved is that none of it is anyone's business except the promoter.

The ABP doesn't care where the money comes from, but I am sure Barry does.

It has been my experience that a good promoter will make as much as 2nd place but not as much as 1st in the tournament.

The amount that is made is what it takes to produce the tournament. Tables, setup, venue, employees and other contract services for the event, these services cost money.

None of this really matters if the players are not paid in a timely manner.

Fran Crimi
07-26-2011, 06:49 AM
I agree, Tom, which is why I think that a promoter should never let things get to where these types of discussions have to happen, because the only defense he may have is in things he can't divulge. I don't think the top finishers would have minded a reasonable payout schedule, agreed to by both sides, over a couple of months until Barry could have settled up his event, but that's not what happened. Now they've lost trust.

Rich R.
07-26-2011, 07:10 AM
<div class="ubbcode-block"><div class="ubbcode-header">Originally Posted By: Fran Crimi</div><div class="ubbcode-body">Jake, the WPBA is in a different situation because they produce their own events. I can tell you how it was done for as long as I know: The prize money is always in the bank in total prior to the event start and the players get paid at the event by check, and the checks don't bounce.

The players all know how much the prize fund is well ahead of time. As for it not being announced, I would guess that it's because it's not a whole lot of money and just advertises how poor our industry is. That's not a good forumla for trying to attract outside sponsorship. </div></div>
This is exactly why I think the ABP should get involved in running their own events but they have made it clear that they don't want any part of that.

jjinfla
07-26-2011, 10:30 AM
I am sure that the reason the ABP does not run their own tournaments is because they realize that they can't do it and show a profit. And it is a lot of work. And it is a thankless job. No matter what you do and how hard you work someone will always find fault.

They would just prefer to sit back and criticize other promoters.

I see that the WPBA will be on TV next month. I will have to try and remember to watch it. Haven't watched them for some time.

Do they pay ESPN to televise the matches, or do they do it for free, or does ESPN pay the WPBA?

I notice a lot of new names in their ranking. Any problems filling the field of 64?

Scott Lee
07-29-2011, 03:04 PM
Jake...AFAIK, the WPBA has always paid ESPN to be on tv.

Scott Lee

jjinfla
07-30-2011, 10:16 AM
If that's what it takes, and they can afford it, then God Bless them.

Fran Crimi
07-30-2011, 01:56 PM
The WPBA doesn't pay ESPN to be on TV. The WPBA has to produce their own shows with production quality that meets ESPN standards. That's where it costs them ---- Hiring a production and editing crew.

prid
08-01-2011, 05:25 AM
Fran, you sound like you are doubting Barry.

Fran Crimi
08-01-2011, 12:22 PM
I don't know what you mean by that post, but here's what I think: I am skeptical that there will be a resolution at this point. I don't think that Barry will agree to the BCA collecting and holding all the players' entry fees plus the $50k in added money until the end of the event. I also don't think that the ABP will agree to anything less with Barry.

I do think that there is a possibility to find a compromise if Shannon were to sit down with the ABP and try to work towards a solution. But that's only if Barry is willing to give up some control to her. He mentioned in his first press release on this subject that she was more involved in the operations. I think that's a really good step and now's the time to prove it.

Oh, and I don't kiss a -- and I am not afraid to say what I truly believe, not unlike others who don't want to jeopardize their relationships for various reasons of self-interest. Who would you rather have as a friend? Someone who tells you like they really see it or someone who says yes yes to your face and talks negative about you behind your back?

jjinfla
08-01-2011, 01:11 PM
<div class="ubbcode-block"><div class="ubbcode-header">Originally Posted By: Fran Crimi</div><div class="ubbcode-body">I am skeptical that there will be a resolution at this point. I don't think that Barry will agree to the BCA collecting and holding all the players' entry fees plus the $50k in added money until the end of the event. I also don't think that the ABP will agree to anything less with Barry.
</div></div>

Well, Oct 15 is only 75 days away and I don't see anything new on the US Open website so perhaps you are right. But I don't doubt that the Open will be held, with or without the ABP.

Also, there seems to be quite a few tournaments all over where the top players of the ABP are participating in. So maybe the players just don't care about the US Open anymore.

Could the ABP players have formed a pact where they go to a tournament and they combine their winnings and split evenly? It would be one way to get the players to show up where they don't have to worry about being skunked. A lot less pressure that way.

Tom_In_Cincy
08-01-2011, 03:03 PM
<div class="ubbcode-block"><div class="ubbcode-header">Originally Posted By: jjinfla</div><div class="ubbcode-body">
Could the ABP players have formed a pact where they go to a tournament and they combine their winnings and split evenly? It would be one way to get the players to show up where they don't have to worry about being skunked. A lot less pressure that way.
</div></div>

Savers/splits/collusion by the pros is their business and they should keep it private.

How a tournament is promoted and financed is the Promoter's business and should be kept private.

Neither is any considered Public knowlege, unless the Pros and the Promoters want it to be.

Opinions are like noses, everyone has one and none are better than others.

I don't understand why the BCA is considered more trustworthy than Barry. When was the last time the BCA held a Pro tournament?

Mark Jarvis
08-01-2011, 05:52 PM
All I can say is Barry ALWAYS paid me. Maybe the players have it right for a change??? Crack Down on the people that have been there and provided the event with class and dignity for 30 plus years and Treated the players like Champions.We all have had hard times... We as players would have had much more dismal Septembers for the last 30 years! I like Barry, Yes he needs to be guided a little, but all in all we are better off with him promoting events. I think putting the money in escrow is a good step forward.

Mark Jarvis.

jjinfla
08-01-2011, 06:26 PM
Barry has agreed to have the BCA escrow the 50K and will give it to them on Sep 20. BCA can now start receiving entry fees and place them in escrow.

So it looks like the last hurdle has been passed.

Tha ABP can breathe again since they sure did not have a large turnout in La. Only 26 players for 9 ball and 18 for 10 ball.

Tom_In_Cincy
08-04-2011, 12:22 PM
It's over, Barry Caved and is going to have the $50k and entry fees taken over by the BCA.

The ABP has won the battle.

No word on the seeding demands or the $500 entry fee for past champions (worth about $7000, that Barry doesn't have to pay)

Still world wide streaming and hopefully USA PPV stream offered by Mr. Fleming's AccuStats team.

jjinfla
08-04-2011, 01:15 PM
Barry made the concession on the 1st and now it is in writing.

Reading item #4 confuses me. If all entry fees and the added money go into an escrow account ($178,000 if they get a full field of 256) that only the BCA can write checks from then where is BB going to get the money to pay players finishing 65-96 which it states that he will pay in cash.

It also states that gate proceeds also go into the escrow account. Barry is giving up gate proceeds?

I must not be reading it properly.

Is the BCA going to be paid for handling the funds and for writing all those checks? That sure is going to be a lot of work. Plus a lot of responsibility. Is the BCA bonded?

Will the BCA also handle the 1099 statements? Will taxes be withheld for non-USA winners?

Turning everything over to the BCA might be a blessing in disguise. I am beginning to think that Barry is a sly old fox.

Tom_In_Cincy
08-04-2011, 03:17 PM
JJinFLA, all good questions.
Barry will be saving $7,000 by my calculation by not having to pay the 14 past champions that are members of the ABP.

Money in escrow for all the players. 65-96 @$500 each is $16,000. The BCA will have to make this money available to Barry when the players will be paid.

I wonder if the BCA will send Barry post dated checks for those players that finish 65-96?

Fran Crimi
08-04-2011, 04:00 PM
Jake, I believe it depends on the agreement made between the BCA and Barry's enterprise ( and with the ABP as well )as to how much work the BCA will be doing. They do have experience in paying international players and taking taxes out, but I think it all comes down to the details of the agreement. Barry is smart, and so are Rob Johnson and Ivan Lee.

jjinfla
08-04-2011, 06:07 PM
I'll bet all parties concerned watch the shark tank and are well versed in making the deal.

I suspect this will be the best US Open ever simply for the fact that so many will now be dedicated to making it a success instead of finding fault with each other.

The ABP has to prove that they are worth the price of admission. So what extras will they be bringing to the party?

Barry hasn't changed his website which still states he will pay the entry fee for former open winners and that the 50K is guaranteed no matter how many people enter. They haven't updated the address where the players send their checks either. I imagine they are working on that now.

Rich R.
08-05-2011, 04:32 AM
With all of these hands in the pot, I hope it doesn't end up as a huge cluser ****.