The Commissioner’s Challenge: Killing the Cap

“Fine, Kelly. I can’t promise anything. But I’ll talk to the owners.” The Commissioner was practically in tears. He hadn’t had a day this humiliating since he’d been forced to take his 300-lb, mustachioed cousin Henrietta to his senior prom.

“You’ve done the right thing.”
“Go to H-E-double hockey sticks.”
“Hey, don’t take it so hard.”
“That’s easy for you to say. You’ve taken everything from me. Why don’t you go have sex with my wife while you’re at it.”
“Now, now—Oh, shit. Um, Gary? I gotta go. Jesus I hope it’s not too late.”
“Too late for what?”
“Nothing. Probably. Uh, I’ll talk to you later. Kthxbai.”

The Commissioner didn’t care about Kelly’s problems. He was despondent. Not even cross-stitching, which always soothed him, was helping. He set down the “Hockey Jesus” pattern he was working on and buried his head in his hands.

His phone buzzed. Kelly again.

“For God’s sake, Kelly. What do you want from me?”
“Gary, I’m really sorry. There’s some sort of problem with their phones. I don’t know if they turned them off or what, but I can’t get through.”
“What are you talking about?”
“Look, I never meant for them to go through with it. But those guys are crazy. They enjoy hurting people.”
“Talk sense, man!”
“I’m sorry. I’ll keep trying. Look, forget about the whole salary cap thing. I’m sorry.”

Kelly hung up. Was he on drugs? Who was he talking about? Whoever it was, they couldn’t do anything to him here–security was excellent. Then he had a chilling thought: What about home? He picked up the phone and dialed. All he got, though, was the dah-dah-dah-dah-dah of a bad circuit. Trouble on the line.

A strange feeling started to come over the Commissioner. It took two full minutes to realize what it was: worry.

“The Commissioner does not get worried,” he said out loud, to no one in particular. Still, perhaps he should go home early. But what kind of example would that set for the marketing interns? Next thing you know, some of them would want to leave before their 8 p.m. quitting time for “family reasons.” Should he stay, or go home early?