When the news broke Friday that Fred Wilpon's Sterling Equities would attempt to sell 20 to 25 percent of the New York Mets to a minority stakeholder, the man the Mets retained to conduct the transaction received little attention. But Steve Greenberg, son of Hall of Fame slugger Hank Greenberg and the man behind the classic sports boom on television, is more than just a sports deal extraordinaire. He's been described as "Keyser Soze" by one observer.
With that in mind, let's take a look at five possible film heroes the Wilpons can hope will come to their rescue, and the ups and downs within each scenario.
1. George Bailey, It's A Wonderful Life: On the plus side, the Wilpons will have a minority owner to show the fans just how awful things would have been without them around. (Cue montage with Mr. Potter or Jim Dolan that will make Ernie the cab driver scream.) And Donna Reed puts Anna Benson to shame. Minuses include the fact that Bailey is really a front for an entire town's money, and that he might demand a role for Uncle Billy.
2. Richard Blaine, Casablanca: On the plus side, the Mets would receive more than just a new minority owner- they'd get a charismatic new host of their rum bar out in center field, and quite possibly, the Letters of Transit. The down side is they may be shocked, shocked to find out how much of Rick's money came from gambling.
3. Lawrence Garfield, Other People's Money: The good news: Rhea Pearlman always available to throw out the first pitch. The bad news: Wilpons wouldn't own a scintilla of the team within a week.
4. Harry Lime, The Third Man: Positives include plans to build a brand new Citi Field Ferris Wheel and creative aesthetic use of the ruins that are postwar Austria/Willets Point. Downside is Lime's medical plan hardly evokes "Prevention and Recovery", though it may not be any worse. New trainer likely Dr. Winkle, new head of public relations Holly Martins, new mascot is this little boy.
5. Hannah Montana, Hannah Montana The Movie: Advantages include a media empire to help expand the name brand of the New York Mets, and an entry point into a generation of young fans who only know the Mets from the past few years of chokes, injuries and scandals. Drawbacks include seeing Billy Ray Cyrus a lot, and knowing Hannah is just Miley in disguise is as obvious as seeing something wrong with consistent 50 percent annual return on your investment.