Per the Saints Bounty Scandal (we've been pushing for "Maim Dat" as a media meme), we're not yet endorsing the outraged nor the indignant. We just want to say that as it stands - and as usual - the only man speaking any sense right now is Charles Barkley:
Barkley did say that NBA players are willing to throw around more money for bounties than NFL players are.
"I think it was $5,000," Barkley said. "We get paid better in the NBA."
(Look here: The following is not an argument supporting the fact that these bounties were worth such a relative pittance that it negates the acrid stain on human decency Gregg Williams oozed. We're here purely for fun with math!)
The Saints' 2009 payroll came in at $121,552,424, with an average salary of $1,992,662 per player, and a median salary of 870,000. We'll use the median for our purposes, since super high salaries are reserved for cornerstone skill players like a running back or quarterback (although maybe not in New Orleans, lulz) who aren't interested in nor provided with a chance to injure anyone, and really low salaries are for punters and long snappers and various other washouts incapable of making little Brett's legs twitch.
For your average mercenary special teams player or linebacker making about $870,000, a $1,500 fine for a "cart-off" hit is a paltry, embarrassing .17 percent of your salary.
What's that mean? Well, from the years 2008-'10, the average median income in the state of Louisiana was $41,896 (only about nine grand off the national average, so save your "Swamp People" jokes). Meaning that by the same percentage of the Saints' salaries, the incentive for some Louisiana everyman to separate the shoulder of that douchebag sales team member at the rival Saturn dealership was a whopping $72.23.
But what about a big fish like Brett Favre? Rumor has it former Miami linebacker (and thus victim of his environment) Johnathan Villma dropped a cool $10,000 on the table for any Saint who could knock out Favre in the NFC title game. By our math, the average Louisianan would earn $481.80* for assaulting Brett Favre, not even enough to cover two nights' hotel in the French Quarter.
Regardless of your opinion on this matter, one thing's for certain: if you're game to derail the career of an industry rival by permanently limiting his or her faculties, basketball pays way better.
*Our formula excludes the accepted logic that most NFL fans would injure Brett Favre for free.