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SBD/May 2, 2013/Sports in Society
NBA, David Stern Got Heads Up Before Collins' Announcement
Published May 2, 2013
MARKETING POTENTIAL: Warriors President & CEO Rick Welts, who two years ago came out publicly, said of Collins’ marketing potential, “Anybody who is going to get involved with him at this point, their message is going to be message-oriented instead of product-oriented. It is not just a player selling a product, this is going to be a message that will go behind that that will make a statement behind this company and making a statement that Jason wants to make.” He added, “It is going to be a company that sees that it fits with what they are trying to accomplish and the market they are trying to reach. It will be a very different kind of sell than you see from most athlete endorsements.” ESPN.com’s Darren Rovell asked Welts how important is it “from a marketing perspective for him to now sign with a team.” Welts replied, “I don't think it's critical. I think there are a lot of other roles he could play in sports, whether that's in the league office or as a broadcaster. There are a lot of things that could keep him very visible in addition to being on a roster" (ESPN.com, 5/1). In London, Oliver Brown writes under the header, “Bravery Of NBA Star Jason Collins Is Sponsors' Dream” (London TELEGRAPH, 5/2). SPORTS ON EARTH’s Will Leitch wrote marketing opportunities “will be there.” Leitch: “At least for a while, anyway, at least until we get tired of him” (SPORTSONEARTH.com, 5/1).
ON THE TUBE: In L.A., Patrick Kevin Day reported the “first interview with Collins and his twin brother, Jarron, is set to air Sunday” on "Oprah's Next Chapter" on OWN (LATIMES.com, 5/1). Also in L.A., Paul Whitefield wrote under the header, “Kenny Smith Schools Chris Broussard On Inclusiveness.” TNT’s Smith in the immediate aftermath of ESPN’s Broussard's comments said, “As an African American, I could never, ever discredit inclusion, because that’s the one thing we always wanted.” Whitefield wrote, “I applaud Smith” (LATIMES.com, 5/1).