Fearless (and cheeky) predictions for the 2014 sports world from the Forbes SportsMoney crew:
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NFL: The league announces that the site of the new football stadium in Los Angeles will be Chavez Ravine. Former Los Angeles Dodgers owner, Frank McCourt, an investor in the real estate, will make a fortune.
MLB: Hedge fund titan Steve Cohen sells his 12% stake in the New York Mets. Current Mets investor Bill Maher is rumored buyer.
NHL: Rather than relocate unprofitable teams from the Sunbelt, hockey announces expansion teams in Seattle and Quebec City for 2016-17 season.
NBA: The Milwaukee Bucks are sold for $500 million. Buyers use upfront payments from the league’s new national broadcasting deal to pay for the team.
Golf: Tiger Woods fails to win one major tournament, but he finishes the year as the sport’s highest earner and first in the world golf rankings.
Tennis: The U.S. Open women’s final again scores a much higher television rating than the men’s final. At the urging of CBS, the women’s final is expanded to a best out of 11 sets.
WWE: Signs new television deal triple current annual value of $140 million. Linda McMahon uses proceeds to fund another run for U.S. senate.
World’s Strongest Man Competition: Is probed by the Feds for rampant use of performance enhancing drugs by its participants. Red Bull is subsequently banned.
NFL: Tim Tebow is back in the NFL.
MLB: The Alex Rodriguez suspension is reduced to 111 games. Injuries also cause him to miss time and he fails to hit the six home runs that trigger $6 million bonus for tying Willie Mays’ mark
NHL: Three teams are sold in 2013, taking advantage of recent run-up in franchise values.
NBA: ESPN/TNT re-sign TV rights deal, but fee jumps 150% thanks to interest from NBC and Fox.
Golf: Tiger Woods breaks his majors drought with two wins: the Masters and the British.
Tennis: Roger Federer drops out of top 10 and retires at end of the year.
Boxing: Floyd Mayweather, Jr., fights in NYC for first time in Sept 2014. Mayweather reaches pact to fight Manny Pacquiao in May 2015
NFL: Tony Romo leads the Dallas Cowboys to this year’s Super Bowl, only to be blamed for a second straight 51-48 loss to the Denver Broncos despite throwing for 506 yards and five TDs.
MLB: Mike Trout once again puts up offensive numbers just a hair behind Miguel Cabrera’s, but this time he wins the AL MVP as the old guard writers finally get it right and cave to the advanced stat crowd.
NHL: After seeing no one watch a riveting Stanley Cup final between the Tampa Bay Lightning and Anaheim Ducks, the league announces that every 2014-15 game will be played outdoors.
NBA: An Indiana Pacers-Portland Trail Blazers final breaks the 2007 San Antonio Spurs-Cleveland Cavaliers record for fewest television viewers.
Golf: Rory McIlroy withdraws from the British Open, citing a toothache, then lambastes all of his critics on Twitter.
Tennis: Maria Sharapova doesn’t win a major, but her endorsements keep piling up anyway. And her candy line surpasses $10 million in sales.
NFL: Peyton Manning (obviously) wins this year’s MVP, but the Denver Broncos lose to the Kansas City Chiefs in the playoffs. Jamaal Charles gets major payday.
MLB: Mike Trout finally wins American League MVP honors. The Miami Marlin’s Jose Fernandez follows phenomenal rookie year by topping Clayton Kershaw for NL Cy Young.
NHL: The St. Louis Blues make their first Western Conference Finals in over a decade and team nets its first profit since 2006.
NBA: The San Antonio Spurs’ age catches up to them; they make the playoffs but get bounced early. Kansas star Andrew Wiggins falls to No. 3 in the draft.
Golf: Adam Scott wins another major. Tiger Woods and Phil Mickelson don’t. Woods is still the year’s money winner.
Tennis: Rafa Nadal picks up three Grand Slam titles, with Novak Djokovic taking his fourth straight Australian Open.
Formula One: Red Bull doesn’t miss a beat despite losing Mark Webber. Sebastian Vettel leads team to fifth straight Constructors’ Championship.
NFL: The Seattle Seahawks win this year’s Super Bowl, in beautiful 50-degree weather at the Meadowlands, harassing Peyton Manning all night. The NFL is hit with a handful of new concussion-related lawsuits. The Carolina Panthers emerge as the best team in the league early in the ’14 season.
College Football: Auburn wins this year’s BCS National Championship. But next season, the title goes to their arch-rival, Alabama, in the first-ever college football playoff. It will be Nick Saban’s fourth at the school, and fifth overall. And he’ll do it with a walk-on quarterback leading the offense.
MLB: The Kansas City Royals make the playoffs for the first time since 1985. The New York Yankees—despite their free agent acquisitions—miss the postseason again.
NBA: The Oklahoma City Thunder finally win a championship. Tim Duncan retires.
Golf: Tiger Woods will win at least one major tournament. He’s been close at Augusta in recent years. He’s due.
Tennis: After bombing out early in each of the four majors and watching his ranking plummet, Roger Federer retires.
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My book about former TD Ameritrade CEO-turned-football coach, Joe Moglia: “4th AND GOAL: One Man’s Quest to Recapture His Dream.”