Extraordinary press release from Women’s Professional Soccer, the troubled, six-team league that is engaged in a power struggle with a renegade owner and seeking to terminate his South Florida franchise (which employs Hope Solo and Abby Wambach) after just one season:
Women’s Professional Soccer (WPS) holds all teams and owners to a uniform professional standard, and all owners must agree to those standards in order to play in the League. When Dan Borislow took over as the majority owner of the Washington Freedom (now magicJack) franchise, Mr. Borislow had an obligation to follow, and embrace these standards and to honor the franchise’s commitments to the League, players and sponsors.
Mr. Borislow has failed to honor his commitments to the detriment of the League, our players and our partners. From unprofessional and disparaging treatment of his players to failure to pay his bills, Mr. Borislow’s actions have been calculated to tarnish the reputation of the League and damage the League’s business relationships. Now, Mr. Borislow has filed a baseless legal action against WPS. The League is not intimidated by Mr. Borislow’s unfounded claims and will not tolerate his mistreatment of players and flouting of the rules.
Mr. Borislow is asking a Florida court to bar the League from exercising its right to terminate his franchise at the end of the season for breach of his contractual obligations. No such entitlement exists under League contracts, and Mr. Borislow’s many contractual breaches more than justify any decision by the League to terminate his franchise.
“It is disappointing that rather than run a professional organization and partner with his fellow owners, Mr. Borislow has chosen to threaten the League by filing this action,” said WPS Board Chairman and Atlanta Beat Owner, T. Fitz Johnson. “All of us at WPS are involved in this business because we love the sport, we are committed to our incredible athletes and fans, and we know that there is a permanent place in sports for the women’s professional game.”
“We continue to focus on our world-class athletes and their accomplishments, and we won’t let the antics of one owner steal the moment from them and from our fans,” said Anne-Marie Eileraas, CEO, Women’s Professional Soccer. “We will defend the League against Mr. Borislow’s latest attack and will continue to hold all of our teams to the same professional standards in order to protect our players, fans, teams, partners and the integrity of the sport.”
The club is scheduled to play Sky Blue tonight in Boca Raton, Fla. For additional details about this mess, read this ESPNW story from a few weeks ago.