Commisioner claims "I am not a crook"

AP - Heywood Jablowmee... Feb 15, 2000

"I am not a crook," proclaimed NIBL co-commisioner Bill Krieger early Valentine's night.

Triggered by early reports spawned, ironically, by the Diablo Spawn owner Danny Bruessel, a full-scale investigation now appears headed the way of NIBL commissioner William T Krieger, aka "Fresh Legs Krieger". Allegations of ties to the Raimondo crime syndicate have long dogged Mr. Krieger and his administration. Now, some of these rumors may have come to fruition in a surprising turn of events that some are calling Theo "Ratliff-Gate".

Beyond the hyperbole, however, lie the facts. What are these facts? Yesterday, in an unprecedented turn of events, the NIBL commisioner revoked the acquisition of Theo Ratliff by the Four Lakes Bolts. The NIBL hierarchy claims that an "administrative error" caused an earlier claim of Ratliff by the Capital City Tools to mistakenly go unreported. Once the error was detected, the NIBL headquarters issued the following press release:

"The NIBL administration regrets any errors made regarding the acquisition of Theo Ratliff.

We find that both the Capital City and Four Lakes franchises have legitimate claim to this player.

Given that each team can lay claim to Theo Ratliff,

we will use a coin flip to determine the team that will rightfully acquire this player."

Shortly after this announcement, the league announced that Capital City had won the "coin flip" and acquired the rights to Ratliff. It should be noted that Capital City owner John Raimondo is co-commissioner of the NIBL. Mr. Raimondo and his family also bankrolls a number of the buildings within the NIBL corporate complex in Naperville, Illinois.

The reaction from Four Lakes was swift. "AAAAAAAAAAAGGGGGGHHHHHHHHHH! Your killin' me!," said Bolts owner Bill Sullivan.

The feelings on the opposite side of the coin were understandably quite different. "I'm very happy that Fresh Legs was coaxed into making the right decision. A decision that he and his whole family can live with," said Mr. John Raimondo, owner of the Capital City Tools. "That's one funny fucking coin, eh," laughed Raimondo. Of course, Mr. Raimondo is the son of Big John Raimondo, long-time head of the Raimondo family reputedly controlling most of the alcohol, gambling and prostitution in St. Charles, Illinois for decades.

"This whole thing smells like shit," said Farmer John.

"Listen, I'm just incompetent... not crooked," said Bill Krieger walking into the Espy awards in Naperville, Illinois. When asked about his ties to the Raimondo family, Fresh Legs responded, "Sure I've known John and his Dad for years, that doesn't mean a damn thing... and stop calling me Fresh Legs!"

This response didn't seem to quell the nerves of a number of NIBL owners.

"I never liked him... Fresh Legs, you know. Look at him for god's sake," said Danny Bruessel upon hearing of the rumors. "I wrote that the commisioner was obviously biased, he's got to go. We need a commissioner, not a puppet."

"I do know that Bill placed a lot of sports bets for the entire Raimondo family," stated Don Fenton, owner West Chicago WifeBeaters. "I mean Bill was heavily into the whole strip club scene, ya know... chicks, dollar bills, cell phones". When asked about his own possible ties to sports gambling in this area, Mr. Fenton hastily replied "No comment! Now, let me out of here!"

"He's drunk with power, I tell you," said Grama Shell, co-owner of the Shorewood Scepters. "Drunk as a skunk."

"I don't know about all this Ratliff-Gate stuff... I still think he's incredibly attractive," said Cancun Cleavage owner Denise Hotbody of the embattled Krieger.

For now, Theo Ratliff is the property of the Capital City Tools. The investigation into his acquisition, however, appears to be gaining steam. Whatever its outcome, this investigation may shake the very foundation of the NIBL patriarchy. "Ratliff-Gate" does not appear to be going away any time soon.