The Record's John Brennan (who should become an honorary member of my blogging team) explains why the Meadowlands deal can not be completed without the Monmouth Park side of the equation being completed. Basically, it boils down to simulcasting. Such as what percentage of the Meadowlands handle on thoroughbred signals goes to the thoroughbred horsemen for purses, assurances that simulcasting will be allowed at the Meadowlands (the distance between the Meadowlands and Monmouth Park allows the NJTHA to pull thoroughbred signals from the Meadowlands (though with New Jersey's must carry rule may mean Monmouth, Freehold and Favorites would not be able to show thoroughbred races either).
For the Meadowlands deal to be closed with the Monmouth issue not resolved one way or the other, it would be irresponsible for Jeff Gural to sign on the doted line as he does not know if his final revenue or cost projections are accurate. This is the one thing the Christie administration has done right. Like it or not, the two breeds are tied at the hip. To allow one side to sign while the other is still negotiating is like signing a blank contract; you can end up on the road to ruin.
Of course, the question is since the Governor's office pulled out of the meetings, how quick are they, going to be back to the negotiating table, if they do. The Meadowlands will run like last year in the interim, but it is a game of chicken between the NJTHA and the Governor's Office.
Shame we don't have Befair in New Jersey. We could be taking bets to see which one blinks first.