SBD/4/Leagues Governing Bodies

CBA UNDERGOING "FUNDAMENTAL PHILOSOPHICAL SHIFT"

          As the CBA "plots a planned expansion and considers" a
     possible TV contract, the league is "borrowing liberally
     from a game plan that minor league baseball has used to
     drive increased attendance and healthy gains from
     sponsorship and licensing deals," according to Greg Johnson,
     who profiles the league in today's L.A. TIMES.  The nine-
     team league "hopes to add seven franchises in coming years"
     and is looking to turn "once-sleepy havens for hard-core
     sports fans into affordable, family-oriented entertainment
     destinations."  Grand Rapids Hoops CEO Bob Przybysz: "What
     you've seen is a fundamental philosophical shift.  We're in
     the entertainment business.  And, while part of the
     entertainment happens to be a basketball component, the rest
     of it is ... fun."  CBA Commissioner Steve Patterson: "The
     league used to try and mirror the NBA, which built its
     reputation on star appeal.  But with a percentage of your
     best players moving up each year, you can't afford to take
     that approach."  Patterson said that while the league lost
     $6M in '96-97, it cut its loss to $1M last season, and
     though a "few franchises are still shaky," the league
     expects to turn a profit in '98-99 (L.A. TIMES, 6/4). 
          OWNERSHIP AND MARKETING: In terms of new ownership, CA-
     based Mandalay Sports Entertainment, which owns minor league
     baseball clubs, said it has "an interest" in pursuing a CBA
     team.  Mandalay Managing Partner Ken Stickney said, "The CBA
     fills a niche.  But they face the same challenge that all
     sports franchises face at that level.  People have a whole
     lot of options for entertainment."   Johnson also reports
     that the league is hoping to increase its TV exposure
     through its alliance with New Line Cinema, producers of
     "Hoop Dreams," which they hope "can craft a different look
     for its television programming -- something that will draw
     young, hip viewers that sponsors crave" (L.A. TIMES, 6/4).  

Return to top
Video Powered By - Castfire CMS Powered By - Sitecore

Report a Bug