Having just watched New York Giants quarterback Eli Manning defy the overwhelming odds against him and evade a quarterback sack to make a 32-year pass that helped swing the tide of the game in his favour, I can’t help but think that Yahoo is looking for exactly the same kind of Hail Mary pass to get out of the embrace of Microsoft. In this scenario, Steve Ballmer is the gigantic defensive lineman who is bearing down on Yahoo like a freight train with legs, and he already has a grip on Yahoo’s jersey.
But does it make any sense for Yahoo to cut some kind of search-related deal with Google, or use Google to help finance a News Corp.-led deal to try and foil Microsoft’s dastardly plan? I’m not sure it does. Being absorbed by the Borg may not be the kind of thing anyone wants, but management by a private equity fund is no picnic either, and contracting its search division out to Google isn’t going to solve anything. Yahoo is still going to be stuck with a pile of lame assets and no strategy.
Meanwhile, Henry “I used to be a famous Wall Street analyst” Blodget over at Silicon Alley Insider says that he thinks Yahoo should avoid a takeover by Microsoft, and instead convince Ballmer to cut a deal in which they combine their Internet assets and Microsoft takes 51 per cent of the combined company. There are only two things wrong with that idea: 1) It’s dumb, since it would mean that Yahoo would be controlled by Microsoft anyway, and 2) Ballmer would never agree to it.