I think this past week was one of the strangest in Boston sports history. The Bruins losing in the Stanley Cup final, Celtics head coach Doc Rivers left for LA and Danny Ainge traded Garnett and Pierce, John Lackey was the Red Sox star and of course Aaron Hernandez headlined this crazy week for the local teams. I cannot remember a week like this for any sports town.
The New England memorabilia industry also experienced many ups and downs this week. The Bruins losing, the Celtics dismantling and the apathy for the Sox is bad enough for business, but the Aaron Hernandez situation is just shattering. From the business point of view, this murder case is unprecedented. Unlike situations involving players who are accused or caught using performance enhancing drugs, a popular athlete accused of murder takes the cake. I know, OJ Simpson went through this in the 90's, but the memorabilia world was about 1/10th the industry and he wasn't convicted.
Although Hernandez is only in the accused stage, his name and merchandise has taken a huge hit. Most businesses cut ties to his merchandise as quickly as the Patriots released him. I know this is nothing compared to the feeling's of the victim's family, as this is a tragedy, but this accusation will cost the New England memorabilia industry millions of dollars. Most dealers/businessmen and fans will still buy or sell PED user autographs and items, but they won't touch anything to do with Hernandez with a 10' pole.
You can wait and see how the trial plays out and hope for the best, but even if found innocent, Hernandez's reputation was fiercly hit so negatively, I don't see a recovery. So if you own a Hernandez item be ready to let it collect dust, throw it away or just hope you can get 10% of it's value from someone.
|Goodbye Paul, Doc and Kevin.|