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Does Rangers have insurance that pays for injured players?


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Ok, it was MLB not NHL


Think it's tough to strike out Toronto Blue Jays all-star outfielder Vernon Wells? Try buying insurance coverage for his new record-setting contract.

Team president Paul Godfrey said the Blue Jays have decided not to buy disability insurance for Wells or any other high-priced players because policy costs have become unwieldy.

A fleet-footed centre fielder, widely considered one of baseball's top players, the 28-year-old Wells is on the verge of agreeing to a seven-year, $126 million (U.S.) contract with Toronto.

The contract would be the largest ever awarded by the Blue Jays and the team's decision to spurn insurance coverage sheds more light on a largely overlooked sports industry niche, the specialized market for sports disability insurance.

"We've run the numbers and it just doesn't make sense to buy insurance," Godfrey said.

"The terms are too restrictive."

The trend of teams buying disability coverage for their players began to catch on in the 1990s as salaries soared after the 1994 players strike. As their player costs skyrocketed, teams started to look for ways to reduce their exposure on long-term, expensive contracts.

But when former Los Angeles Dodgers pitcher Kevin Brown – whose $105 million contract was baseball's first to eclipse $100 million – and other high-priced players suffered injuries that led to multi-million-dollar payouts, insurance companies began to balk and coverage became more costly.

Now, teams pay premiums of about 2 per cent of the total contract value for fielders in their mid- to late 20s and three times that much for pitchers, who are typically more susceptible to injuries, said Greg Sutton of Toronto-based underwriter William J. Sutton & Co., a specialist in the sports field.

Factors that affect insurance rates include whether money is loaded to the start or end of a contract; a player's age; their injury history and whether he has a track record of substance abuse.

Some policies demand that a player be sidelined for a full season before a team can begin to collect a payout.

That's what happened to the Blue Jays when their star pitcher Roy Halladay suffered a season-ending injury in July 2005. Because he returned to the team last April, the Blue Jays never received a cent from their insurance company, Godfrey said.

"We think now that we should just use the money we would have used for insurance and put that into player salaries."

To be sure, one insurance industry official said the Blue Jays have been paid out for several claims in recent years for player injuries, including those suffered by pitchers Joey Hamilton and Eric Hanson.

It's doubtful that the Blue Jays would be able to find an insurance company willing to cover Wells's entire salary.

A small handful of privately held companies underwrite almost all of the disability policies bought by baseball teams. Bill Hubbard, president of baseball insurer ASU International LLC in Woburn, Mass., said the Blue Jays would have a tough time finding insurers to cover as much as $100 million, or 79 per cent of Wells's prospective contract.

"And that would be very complex and expensive," Hubbard said.

In some instances, baseball teams have to settle for policies that don't cover the full length of a player's contract.

Other sports leagues don't have the same troubles baseball faces. The National Basketball Association, for instance, has an agreement with U.S.-based Trustmark Insurance Co. for a group insurance policy that spreads the injury risk among more players.

The Blue Jays haven't avoided insurance altogether. The team still buys life insurance for its players, Godfrey said. For Wells's $126 million deal, that could still cost the team as much as $630,000, industry officials said. If Wells admitted to being a smoker or a drinker, the cost would be even more.

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I think if that player is injured while playing for Rangers then we still need to pay his wages. But if he gets injured on international duty then we can demand compensation from the SFA. I am sure that Newcastle are trying to fight for compensation because of Michael Owen's injury at the World Cup. They are looking for £9 million though.

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i am pretty sure that stefan klos was insured so the insurers paid his wages when he was out injured. Not sure if that was before his knee injury a couple of years ago or the one at the start of the season though but definetly remember reading about it somewhere.

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i am pretty sure that stefan klos was insured so the insurers paid his wages when he was out injured. Not sure if that was before his knee injury a couple of years ago or the one at the start of the season though but definetly remember reading about it somewhere.

Klos was injured in an accident unrelated to football though, the present injury that is...might be different under those circumstances.

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As long as it is a football related injury, Then Rangers would recieve money.

If the player in question does the injury in his own time or has a health condiiton that leads to an injury, then the player/club are not covered.

For example "Klos motor cycle accident" and "If a player has a bad heart and was forced to give up the game" or "A player had an eye condition and went blind after a clash of heads"

Insurance would not be paid out.

If Alan Hutton for example got a career ending injury next week playing for Rangers, The insurance would offer Rangers the sum of money he was insured for. Its a bit like car insurance.

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