Jimmy Connors Praises Shohei Ohtani Dual Skills Following Record $700M Deal

Japanese Baseball Star Sets New Financial Precedent in MLB.

by Nouman Rasool
Jimmy Connors Praises Shohei Ohtani Dual Skills Following Record $700M Deal
© Meg Oliphant/Getty Images

In a groundbreaking move that has sent ripples through the sports world, Japanese baseball sensation Shohei Ohtani has inked an unprecedented $700 million contract with the Los Angeles Dodgers. This deal, spanning ten years, not only marks the highest value in Major League Baseball (MLB) history but also in the annals of global sports contracts.

The signing has garnered attention from various corners of the sports universe, including American tennis icon Jimmy Connors. The news of Ohtani's deal was a central topic in the latest episode of the "Advantage Connors" podcast, where Connors, known for his legendary tennis career, took a moment to discuss this historic baseball event.

Connors expressed his admiration for Ohtani, particularly highlighting the dual-threat capabilities of the Japanese star as both a pitcher and a hitter. Drawing parallels with the legendary Babe Ruth, Connors marveled at Ohtani's rare ability to excel in both aspects of the game, a feat not commonly seen since the days of Ruth.

The Los Angeles Dodgers officially welcomed Ohtani at Dodger Stadium, where he was introduced to the media. During the press conference, Ohtani shed light on his decision to join the Dodgers, emphasizing his desire for team success and acknowledging the uncertainty of a long-term sports career.

"Winning is my top priority," Ohtani stated, hinting at a focused ambition to achieve team glory during his tenure with the Dodgers.

Ohtani's Unique Payment Plan

Interestingly, Ohtani's contract includes a unique payment structure.

A substantial portion of the deal, amounting to $680 million, will be deferred, to be paid interest-free between 2034 and 2043. This approach to contract payments is not entirely new in MLB, as seen in past arrangements with players like Ken Griffey Jr.

and Bobby Bonilla. However, Ohtani's deal stands out for its scale and strategic financial implications. From a team perspective, the Dodgers gain the advantage of deferring a significant financial commitment, potentially aiding in their quest to build a formidable team dynasty in the immediate future.

Additionally, Ohtani could benefit from tax advantages if he is not residing in the United States when these deferred payments are made. This historic deal not only underscores Ohtani's remarkable talent and value in the world of baseball but also sets a new benchmark in sports contracts globally.

As the Dodgers gear up for their future with Ohtani, the sports world watches with keen interest to see the impact of this monumental agreement.

Shohei Ohtani