Dan Borislow, current owner of the Washington Freedom, has been granted permission by the league to go through with some radical changes in regards to the team. However, the impact of these changes might cause more harm than expected.
It was recently released in the Washington Post, that Dan Borislow, current owner of the Washington Freedom, was granted approval by the WPS, in regards to his request to split home games between Maryland/DC, and Southern Florida. Borislow, who owns the MagicJack business, hails from Florida, and shortly after he bought the Freedom, made it known that he had some pretty big changes in mind. Looks like the league has approved both. Earlier today, WPS released the schedule for the first 2 game weeks. One of the games listed is "Philadelphia Independence vs. Washington Freedom/ Magic Talk SC." That in itself was disheartening, to see that the league approved him to change the name of one of the teams with the longest standing history. But it got worse as the day moved on. Later, the Washington Post published an article online stating that the league had in fact granted him permission to split the Freedom's (or should I say Magic Talk FC's) home games between the Maryland Soccerplex, and some stadium in Southern Florida. While this does not affect me, since I am a Freedom fan who resides in NY, I still find this unfair to the fans, especially those living in DC/Maryland, and also to the team. The Washington Freedom has been around for 10 years, and has survived the WUSA, and are one of 3 remaining teams from that era. To let some owner come in and make a complete mockery out of the team, using it as his little advertising stint, is just a complete disgrace. Its a shame this has to happen for the team's 10th year anniversary too. I think the league is too afraid to lose him as an investor, so they will satisfy his every itch and whim. The point is, the league is desperate, and they don't want to lose him, so instead they will appease his demands, because they wouldn't want to step on anyone's toes and possibly lose an investor. He knows he can do whatever he wants, and by creating these changes, he's also creating anger and unhappiness among the fans. Many other teams in the league have been working to sign players. Instead, our team has done nothing but lose them. We've lost Whitehill, Long, the list goes on. While everyone else in moving forward, our team is taking 2 steps back. We have an owner who is too busy doing whatever he pleases with the team. He's neglecting the important factors; we need more staff, we still are in need of a head coach, and we need to re-sign players or get new ones. At this point, I wouldn't be surprised of Borislow makes a statement tomorrow, declaring himself head coach. This guy may have saved the team from folding, but all he's done is made changes that have left the team somewhat in shambles. Instead of doing his job, getting players, making important decisions for the team's future, he's recklessly changing the name and location, treating the team like a toy with which he can do what he wants. He's making a complete mockery of everything. The fans have no say, the league apparently doesn't either. At this rate, who knows what changes he'll make next? With the power the league has granted him, he's sure to abuse it, as he already has made a point of doing. The team and staff is being neglected, and the whole thing's becoming a three ring circus. I don't even know if you could call the Freedom a team anymore. The whole situation is turning into a disaster, and is essentially harming and destroying the team. There hasn't even been any news on the Washington Freedom's page on the WPS website. Don't be surprised if this upcoming season, you see a scene like this:
Abby Wambach walks away sadly, as medics crouch over the remains of the Freedom, trying to revive the broken and neglected club.
This is certainly what it might turn out to be in the future.
With this 3rd year upon us, it's a bad time to have an irresponsible owner running rampant. We're coming to our landmark year. The WUSA folded in their 3rd year, which was also a World Cup year. Now, in the present day, WPS is hitting it's 3rd season, also in a World Cup year. The whole scenario is highly reminiscent of the WUSA. I'm not one of the pessimists who are writing the WPS off, but I am going to be realistic. We've had a team fold after the 2010 season, and one suspended operations. The league has hit a rough spot. However, I feel it doesn't bode well that the league is so dependent on investors, that they literally cannot put their foot down and deny whims that could possibly destroy teams. The WPS is shaky. But, I think they can make it through. Hopefully the World Cup will bring more attention and fans to the Women's game, and in turn, to the WPS. I am still a supporter of the Freedom, and even though their name and location has changed, to me, they will always be The Washington Freedom.
I think I speak for all of us when I say that I hope the WPS makes it through their 3rd year unscathed. There are great athletes, role models, and teams within this league, and to lose them, and to lose the chance to watch them play, and get excited about games and rivalries, would be extremely sad. The fans and players love this league, and deserve to have it stick around. I hope it finds it's way through the rough patches.
We'll see how it goes. The Draft is the 14th, and the full league schedule will be released in February.
Until next time,
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