EY's pullout has been making its news over the last 2 weeks but nobody took it serious. In the past few years such stories were a regular feature before the MHL but it was always only a rumour. Those who speak about such matters are well aware of the moaning and groaning that is heard of the difficulties involved in managing the team. To many it was a matter of time frustration would creep in as the financial rewards are not there in participating in MHL. Therefore having a team in MHL is a "cost center" and not a "profit center".
Many take it as part of advertising costs because of the publicity or just as part of corporate & social responsibility. Most teams at the Premier League would have to spend a minimum of RM $300,000 to RM $450,000 per year. EY is at much higher scale and the figure could be between RM $800.000 to RM $1,000,000. It essentially depends on how much the players are paid, their allowances and for what period. In the case of EY most of the key national players with them are paid RM $2000 to RM $3000 for a period of an year. This is notwithstanding the fact that the MHL maybe for a period of 8 to 10 weeks.
The price money in MHL is nothing exciting for the maximum a team could earn is RM $40,000 ie if they carry the double. So realistically it does not make monetary sense to participate in the MHL Maybe, it is for the love of hockey? Even so, with that sort of money you can fly all over the world to see good hockey. Otherwise it is the price you pay to display good managerial skills of managing successful hockey teams. Whatever it maybe the point is that players have other sources of income ie from the clubs to supplement their earnings and that in a way is good for hockey.
Therefore if any team pulls out of the MHL it means that there is less places but more players thereby creating greater competition for places. Based on excess supply and lower demand, it could push the salaries on a downward trend. This may have an impact on the overall earnings of players. This rule may not affect the senior and exceptionally good players as they would always carry a premium.
Pulling out may also mean one less team in the league. However on the other side with more available players in the market this may entice newcomers into the league, who previously could not find the players. More so with EY's pullout, as the monopoly of having at least 20 National players both seniors and juniors would now be broken. With EY's threat profile as potential champion out of the door, it would open a more balance and even competition.
Effectively EY's pullout maybe a blessing in disguise and may do greater justice to Malaysian hockey. There is no doubt that a well managed team with a good coach would be missing from the future Malaysian hockey annals. Nevertheless EY's manager is now the national team manager while its coach is with the Project 2013 team. At least with the success they brought to EY, they are going places and that itself becomes a good showpiece.
My only concern is the question regarding EY's players. Most of them are on contract and yet the EY manager in announcing the pullout seem reluctant to release his players until after the World Cup qualifiers. This is something i am unable to comprehend as the MHL is to begin after the qualifiers. Maybe because the players are on contract with EY, he can still call the "shots" with them for the qualifiers as their national manager. Although there are other rumours including that the players in toto may play for another new team, which may have association to the current EY manager. Whatever it maybe, i think the "hide & seek" that is coming out of this latest scenario may not do justice to the national team manager.
All in all, it is sad EY wants to pullout of the MHL but it would not have a devastating impact. If any, it may help to bring a sense of sanity to the league by removing the monopolistic control of national players. We would probably have a balance and an even competitive league which could create an healthy environment.