SBD/May 10, 2012/People and Pop Culture

What I Like With SportsNet N.Y. President Steve Raab

Raab named SNY's and WFAN-AM's Mets announcers as his favorite on-air crews

In our continuing series, SportsBusiness Daily/SportsBusiness Journal asks top sports personalities for their thoughts, ideas, aspirations and likes. Today, SportsNet N.Y. President STEVE RAAB.

What I Like…

An insight: Nothing’s more important than leverage and relationships.

Influential people in my career: STEVE LESNICK, who owned KemperSports, which was my first real job; [Mets Owner] FRED WILPON, who's been all about honesty, integrity and relationships; and SAUL KATZ, co-Founder and President of Sterling Equities.

An out-of-the-box idea: Harrah's hiring GARY LOVEMAN, a career academic, in 1998 to be its COO with oversight for 35,000-plus employees.

A timeless idea: Maintaining a focus on customer service.

A business deal
: The Pac-12 Network.

A sports facility: AT&T Park is built in just a stunning setting, but Wrigley Field is still my favorite ballpark of all time. And it is the star, not the team.

A sports event: Any truly big-time college football game, probably SEC.

A strategy: IBM transforming itself from mainframe obscurity into a software and service company.

A hire: MARK LAZARUS by NBC.

A brand: Ironman Triathlon.

An ad campaign: I always thought "Where's the Beef" from Wendy's was brilliant.

A trend: Customization, which is just really hyper-segmentation.

An innovation: The yellow first-down line on televised football.

A pro league or team business initiative: Soccer United Marketing (SUM). Having a plan from the outset to branch beyond MLS and involve itself in soccer's most important properties across North America.

A sports announcer: MARV ALBERT ... but [SNY's] GARY COHEN/KEITH HERNANDEZ/RON DARLING for baseball on television and [WFAN-AM's] Gary Cohen/HOWIE ROSE for baseball on radio.

A story that bears watching: TV Everywhere.

An idea or invention I wish I had thought of: StubHub and the whole movement that has made the secondary ticketing market so efficient.

A previous job: GM of the CBA Sioux Falls Skyforce team. I was 23.

A fantasy job: U.S. ambassador to a neutral country with a great climate.


What I Like About...


My job: The ability to manage an entire business every day.

Sports: The passion that it generates.

Sports business: A lot of days, it doesn't really feel like a job.

Sports media: The fan base with an insatiable appetite.

Sports technology: The challenge to stay informed.

Competing: The chance to win.


What I Would Like To...

Change: Pricing, so that more consumers can participate.

See more of in sports: Sportsmanship.

See less of in sports business: The winning-is-everything attitude.


What I Don't Like...

About sports fans: A winning-is-everything attitude.


What I Like...

Heroes: My father. My dad is a pediatric ophthalmologist and so what he does is highly specialized and highly valued. That's got to be very fulfilling.

Athletes: THURMAN MUNSON, BERNARD KING, BILL BRADLEY

Teams: The championship Knicks teams.

City: S.F.

Possession: Does my family count? They are more important to me than any one thing.

Music: Springsteen.

TV shows: "THE OFFICE" and "60 MINUTES."

Movies: "RAISING ARIZONA," "THE SHAWSHANK REDEMPTION,"BRIAN'S SONG."

Books: "BALL FOUR," by JIM BOUTON.

Magazines: SI, Fortune.

Websites: Deadspin, SNY.TV.

Gadgets: BlackBerry.

Food: Italian.

Drink: A cold beer.

Vacation spot: Jackson Hole, Wyo.

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