New direction for the players

fred bentivegna

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I am putting together an organization that will insure that the players get paid for their autographs. No more cue balls, shirts, photos, or sticks signed for nix. Every other sports celebrity in the world gets paid big money to sign sports gear, but not our guys. I am going to try and change all that. I talked to all the major players at the Olympics in Louisville this Nov. To a man they were all excited by the idea. To start it off I paid all of them -- in front-- to sign some cue balls and other stuff. I am going to have them, and other top players, from Efren on down, pre-autograph sports gear to be marketed from my booth at DCC and then on my website with the boys getting a cut of everything they sign -- in front. At Derby City I will be at a booth that will have, among other things, pre-autographed memorabilia, and the ability to provide -- on request -- autographs on whatever memorabilia the fans provide, their shirts, sticks, whatever. The players will get paid for every signature. I am then going to take it further and solicit the big billiard supply companies and allow them to advertise and sell, officially autographed memorabilia, balls, cues, clothing, etc. I'm also going to hit on the cuemakers and allow them to sell their sticks with a real autograph on them, not a machine print. Naturally, that would allow the cuemakers to charge a few bucks extra for a special edition cue. For this service they would pay our organization a fee. The players I talked to have agreed to not sign anything for free at DCC. They will refer all requests to my booth. To give an idea of what the marketing for this stuff might look like on a suppliers catalog page, I'm including a preview of some of the marketing I am going to do on my webpage where I am going to solicit requests for autographed cueballs and display cases. A fan can reserve an autographed cueball and trophy case and I will get his ball signed for him at Derby City in Jan.

The Beard
(exception: the Bugs signed cueballs on display below are not for sale)
 

fred bentivegna

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Clarify the matter

Clarify the matter

I should have been more clear in my initial post. I posted this in AZ forums also and drew an incredible amount of heat. This is not about denying little Johnny his free autograph. The players will still sign autographs, if they feel like it, on paper, programs etc. They will not sign PRODUCTS OR SOUVENIRS for free -- and why should they? A Ivan Roderiguez baseball glove aint free, and he gets his cut for his replicated signature and endorsement. These are like mini-endorsements, and a way for the players to make a buck.
 

jalapus logan

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Freddy, I have to take issue here with likening player autographs on products as "mini-endorsements". The replicated signatures you refer to are in fact endorsements of a product or service. Signing a peice of equiment or paraphanalia at an event such as the DCC is not a product endorsement, rather, it is an acknowledgement of the fan's enthusiasm for the sport and the player's efforts in particular. Now, I do appreciate your efforts to monetize the sport. Pool has been notoriously low on the priority list for the sporting public and because of this, few players can afford to play as a profession. I'm just afraid that an intiative such as autograph brokering might appear somewhat abraisive to the already small fan base and alienate them in the process. Now, having said that, how about this for an idea. Instead of selling autographs, how about selling experiences. For instance, you could sell a personal or group tutorial with one or more of the players. Or perhaps some sort of "play with the pros" scotch doubles event similar to the raffle that Jeanette Lee has been involved in in years past. I'm sure that a fan would be willing to shell out far more for that than having a player put pen to paper (or some other oject that they provide).
 

Smorgass Bored

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fred bentivegna said:
I should have been more clear in my initial post. I posted this in AZ forums also and drew an incredible amount of heat. This is not about denying little Johnny his free autograph. The players will still sign autographs, if they feel like it, on paper, programs etc. They will not sign PRODUCTS OR SOUVENIRS for free -- and why should they? A Ivan Roderiguez baseball glove aint free, and he gets his cut for his replicated signature and endorsement. These are like mini-endorsements, and a way for the players to make a buck.

Freddy, the members of AZB are the hard core players, TDs, room owners, fans, paying spectators, etc. of this sport and you are WELL liked by 99% of them. The fact that so many of these people are not onboard with your idea should be taken serioulsy while structuring your new venture... imo
good luck with whatever you do,
Doug


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fred bentivegna

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In too deep now

In too deep now

Smorgass Bored said:
Freddy, the members of AZB are the hard core players, TDs, room owners, fans, paying spectators, etc. of this sport and you are WELL liked by 99% of them. The fact that so many of these people are not onboard with your idea should be taken serioulsy while structing your new venture... imo
good luck with whatever you do,
Doug
Doug, thanks for your concern and advice, but I'm in too deep financially now. No matter what, I am going to market signed cueballs and trophy cases at Derby City and my website.

the Beard
 

fred bentivegna

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Go to Google

Go to Google

This is a post I put up on AZ forum that I think should be repeated here.

I noticed a recurring theme throughout the 80 plus threads to this post. Even though I had no intention of players ever denying a fan or a child a free autograph, and my intention when I suggested they didn't give their John Henry on a product for free, I am appalled at the vehemently negative response to the idea that a champion players autograph might be worth something. So many seemed to say that a lowly pool champions autograph, even on a souvenir wasn't really worth hardly anything, and to compare pool champions with other REAL sports champions like Ivan Rodriguez or Michael Jordan was a joke. For guys who frequent a POOL FORUM, your lack of respect and esteem and the low value you assign to the players in our game is unbelievable to me. WELL, I DON'T FEEL THAT WAY! I believe our players have got as much or more coming as any of the limelighted sports whizzes. I believe our guys signature is worth something. If you don't believe me, try to buy one of my Bugs signed cue balls. As for how far off base my idea is, just go to Google, like I did, and search for "autograph signings." This is what came up right away:

Http://www.creativesportsent.com/jegatabaybud.html
Jeff Garcia - Autographed 8x10 Photo - Tampa Bay Bucs
Jeff Garcia - Pre-order Bucs 8x10 $59.99

$60 hammers for a photo of -- who?-- Jeff Garcia? What's his quarterback rating? About 75? For him to sign these items below you must provide and send the item, and then pay the quoted prices.

8x10's , 16x20's & Mini Helmets - $55.00
Fullsize Helmets , Football , Jersey's , - $75.00

Here's another site on the same page:
Http://www.sportsworld-usa.com/index...ewCat&catId=29
BILLY ROHR
(Who is Billy Rohr? Apparently a baseball player. Can he break, and put together a six pack?)

will be appearing live at Sportsworld August 19th, 2007 from 12pm - 2pm
If you're going to attend the signing at Sportsworld
Order your advanced tickets today!
Advanced tickets cover the cost of the autograph ONLY
8x10's, & baseballs will be available to purchase at the store
this will allow you to get in the ticket holder line the day of the show.
Inscriptions are optional and cost an additional $5 which can be paid the day of the show
$20 per Autograph.

I'm sick of pool players being thought of as second-class citizens in the world of sports. In my eyes Bugs Rucker deserves as much respect as Joe Louis or Mohammed Ali. When somebody like Mickey Mantle is all washed up at 31yrs old, and then you have someone like Incardona still dabbing it at 60 plus, why should pool players ever have to sit in the back of the room?

The Beard
__________________
Bank on, brother!
 

fred bentivegna

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reprint

reprint

This is a reprint of the last post I made on AZ forums. It is not all directed at the members of this forum. I just thought if there was anything to clear up re my original post this should do it.

This will be my last post on this thread. Thanks for all your input, I believe my idea has been distorted and misconstrued, but that is probably more my fault than anybody else's. Tact in delivery has never been a long suit of mine, but I will take one more stab at it.
Out of 140 posts --- the point nobody seems to get -- I am the one that is paying for an autograph. I am the one that think their signature is valuable and am willing to put up my money to back up my belief. No one else is being asked to pay for an autograph. It is me who pays them for every souvenir they sign for me. I give the guys a batch of cue balls to sign, they sign them, and I pay them, in front, for their efforts. A cue maker sends me a batch of sticks to be signed, the players sign them, and I pay them for doing so and send the sticks back to the cuemaker to market as special edition items. Hopefully, collectors and afficanados will buy these items and we can keep the cycle going. I bear sole financial responsibility for my idea. If that is stupid and insane, then it is only me that needs to be committed. To those that argue that a pool player's signature is not so valuable when you compare it to mainstream popular sports figures, that's your opinion, and it won't cost you a quarter if my differing opinion is ill founded. I'm the one whose bankroll is going to go into the toilet. Don't worry about me. I'm a big boy, I've endured much worse before. Go back to post #1 and open up the attachments. I intend to sell laser etched (the laser etching monogram is not shown in the attached sample), monogrammed cueballs in a trophy case, with a real player's signature on it, as a tournament souvenir for $25. The customers will be paying for the product only, I will have already paid the players their commission.

The Beard
Meth? Nah, just pills and coke. 67 years old, healthy as a horse, and clean as a hounds-tooth for 25 years. Very poor sex life, however.
 

blackeee

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Nov 16, 2006
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autographs

autographs

Freddy. I replied to your original post on AZ in a negative manner,however after reading this I am now clear as to what you meant. Originally I thought you meant paying for autographs only. Sure I would pay for a Cueball signed by the great Bugs.

Bank on Brother.
 
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