SBD/Issue 121/Events & Attractions

Highlights From Day One Of The IMG World Congress Of Sports

The IMG World Congress of Sports continues at the St. Regis Resort in Dana Point, California, today with three one-on-one sessions -- with Red Sox Chair Tom Werner, NFL Giants Chair & Exec VP Steve Tisch and Revolution Studios Founder Joe Roth -- and two panels. Panelists for a discussion on the future of sports media include Fox Sports President Ed Goren and ESPN Exec VP/Content John Skipper. A discussion on entertainment production features EA Sports President Peter Moore and DEI President of Global Operations Max Siegel.

Carey Discusses NFL's Decision To Allow
Nets To Broadcast Patriots-Giants Game
DIRECT EFFECT: During a one-on-one interview yesterday, DirecTV CEO Chase Carey acknowledged that the satellite TV provider was not thrilled that the NFL had agreed to allow other networks to broadcast the final regular-season game between the Patriots and Giants, though he understood the regulatory and other pressures under which the NFL was operating. Carey: “Would I have preferred for it to have stayed an exclusive product of the NFL Network? Sure." Carey declined to reveal the nature of DirecTV's talks with the NFL on the subject, saying, "We address those issues privately between us." During the interview, Carey also addressed a wide range of issues, including the dangers of too much fragmentation of sports broadcasting, balancing the costs and the benefits of broadcasting sports and how the current economic downturn was affecting DirecTV.

BREAK OUT THE GLASSES: Word around the World Congress is that FSN Southwest will be rolling out a 3D HD telecast March 25 for its coverage of Clippers-Mavericks. The game will be carried in Mavericks Owner Mark Cuban’s Landmark Theatres. The NBA rolled out its first 3D HD offering last year during an invitation-only event at the league's All-Star Game in Las Vegas. It then went public during the Finals in June, when about 14,000 people watched Game 2 between the Spurs and Cavaliers in 3D HD at Cleveland’s Quicken Loans Arena.

Ponturo Discusses Anheuser-Busch's
Involvement In Mixed Martial Arts
GETTING IN THE CAGE: Anheuser-Busch VP/Global Media & Sports Marketing Tony Ponturo talked about why his company has become involved in mixed martial arts. Ponturo: "The key is to know your consumer and follow your consumer. We've seen a study that shows a young male can identify 10 UFC fighters, but not 10 players on the (St. Louis) Rams." MLS Commissioner Don Garber welcomed the idea of MMA being a major force on the sports scene, saying, “It's great to see there's room in this industry for a new sport." However, Coca-Cola Senior VP/Integrated Marketing Bea Perez cautioned that MMA advertisers have to be "very cognizant" of the potential reaction of certain sizable portions of their consumer base, particularly mothers. Perez: "If we're going to invest in something that (offends) her, we're going to lose an important consumer who really has some pull."

MORE SIGHTS AND SOUNDS: For the latest news on what is taking place at the conference, please visit www.sportsbusinessdaily.com/wcos.

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