Sad, bitter end for Livestrong Sporting Park
The Kansas City Star
The sudden end to Livestrong’s relationship with Sporting KC on Tuesday turned out to be a bitter and sad affair.
Unfortunately, the episode also created a nationally reported wave of bad publicity for Sporting KC and Livestrong.
Whom to believe: Livestrong or Sporting KC?
Livestrong accused Sporting KC of not contributing the agreed amounts of money to the organization, as worked out by the two “partners” when the new soccer stadium in Kansas City, Kan., was named “Livestrong Sporting Park” a few years ago.
Sporting KC officials fired back, saying they had made the required contributions and accusing Livestrong officials of not dealing in good faith to keep the pact alive.
Of course, the recent problems of Livestrong will help plenty of people in Kansas City take the hometown soccer team’s side in this dispute. After all, Livestrong was founded by the now-disgraced Lance Armstrong.
Still, as I wrote earlier Tuesday before the partnership publicly imploded, I thought it made lots of sense for Sporting KC and Livestrong to continue their relationship. Livestrong benefits the fight against cancer, and Sporting KC had bought into that fight, too, with its stadium agreement.
That contract was supposed to funnel hundreds of thousands of dollars over at least six years to Livestrong. It was an unusual relationship; usually the groups that get their names on sports stadiums have to pay for that privilege, not benefit from it.
But the end of that arrangement came in a depressing hail of attacks on each other through the media.