By Phil Sheridan

Inquirer Sports Columnist

The four commissioners have seen the future of professional sports, and it isn't us.

That's U-S as in us, as in United States.

The Wall Street Journal brought the commissioners - in descending order of regalness, Roger Goodell of the NFL, Bud Selig of Major League Baseball, David Stern of the NBA, and Gary Bettman of the NHL - together yesterday for a panel discussion billed as "The Future of Sports."

Two things stuck out: The three others fear and admire Goodell and his massively popular league the way the rest of the Cleveland Cavaliers regard LeBron James. And the key to combating the NFL for revenue is to mine foreign markets for every possible yen, yuan and euro.