Faced With Dwindling Number of Cities Interested in Hosting the Games, IOC Enacts Radical Changes to Bidding Process
Thomas Bach, right, president of the International Olympic Committee, with Prince Albert of Monaco on Monday. REUTERS
By MATTHEW FUTTERMAN
Updated Dec. 8, 2014 5:46 p.m. ET
Does this help wrestling? Remains to be seen. This is about the wealth transfers that hosting an Olympics require and the worldwide recession making that process harder. The leaders of the olympics don;t care much about the sports, thye just care about feathering their nests and good PR.
It’s been a rough year for the Olympic movement.
The Sochi Olympics in February came with a $50 billion price tag and an embarrassing controversy over whether gay athletes would be discriminated against. Then, a series of potential hosts for the 2022 Winter Games decided to take a pass, leaving a contest between Beijing and Almaty, Kazakhstan, neither a winter sports hub. Stockholm, Munich, Krakow and even Oslo, thought better of throwing a multibillion-dollar festival of slipping and sliding sports. The U.S., the International Olympic Committee’s main source of revenues, never seriously considered a bid.
Thomas Bach, the German lawyer who became IOC president last fall, looked at the landscape and decided it was time for major reforms, despite record revenues and roughly $11 billion in guaranteed payments from NBCUniversal through 2032.