(Bloomberg) -- Dallas Cowboys owner Jerry Jones told a jury that the NFL’s broadcast revenue-sharing model encourages competition — three decades after he called the league a “price-fixing cartel.”

Teams such as the Cowboys — the league’s most valuable franchise — would win constantly if revenue from media rights wasn’t split evenly, because they’d have more funds to stack their teams with top players, Jones said.

“We would have dominating teams, just a few — maybe just fingers-full” and that would reduce fans’ “passion and hope,” Jones told a Los Angeles federal jury during the third calendar week of an antitrust trial over the National Football League’s Sunday Ticket product.

“I’m convinced I would make a lot more money than the Bengals,” Jones said, eliciting laughs from the courtroom. 

Kalpana Srinivasan, an attorney representing fans and commercial subscribers who sued the league, highlighted Jones’s claims in his 1995 court battle with the league over the right to sell merchandising with logos. 

Jones said in a complaint then that “drafts favoring less successful teams, a salary cap and the like” help teams maintain competitive balance, Srinivasan said, noting that the pooling of media rights was not part of Jones’ equation.

Jones said the issues of merchandising rights and broadcast rights are like “daylight and dark.” The issues he raised in 1995 are distinct because the merchandising suit was centered on brand engagement with the regional fan base, he testified.

“It’s not so much the hat as it is the symbolic ‘you are now a Cowboy fan,’” Jones said.

Jones didn’t denounce his 1995 claims, but said he wouldn’t have brought the suit unprovoked. “The NFL sued me and I responded,” he said.

The fans who sued the NFL in 2015 want to revise its broadcast policies to allow for greater access to out-of-market games at lower prices. The NFL could have to pay as much as $21 billion if it loses the trial because damages are tripled under federal antitrust law.

In testimony earlier Monday, NFL commissioner Roger Goodell rejected claims that the league colluded with DirecTV to set the price of Sunday Ticket, saying the subscription fee was solely determined by the satellite television provider.

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