• 2014 Ticketing Symposium: Networking and bagels (and fruit and coffee ...)

    We had a full room for networking today before the start of the 2014 Ticketing Symposium. Here are some of the scenes from the exhibit hall. Click any image to launch the slide show.



  • SBJ/SBD's weekly NHL Wrap-Around podcast

    As the Stanley Cup Finals continue, staff writers Christopher Botta and Alex Silverman discuss the latest hockey news in SBJ/SBD's "NHL Wrap-Around Podcast." Among the topics:

    Pittsburgh hiring Jim Rutherford as general manager.

    NBC's ratings success with the Stanley Cup Finals.

    Reviving the World Cup of Hockey and what that means for the Olympics.

    And the NHL is on the way to adding $1 billion in revenue by 2015.

    Tags: NHL, Hockey, SBJSBD Podcast
  • TV Timeout: Horse Play

    California Chrome co-Owner Steve Coburn, on his apology for comments following the Belmont Stakes: “I wanted so much for this horse to win the Triple Crown for the people of America and I was very emotional. … (But) it's a learning process for us and I'm going to do better. I'll promise you I'll do better" ("GMA," ABC, 6/9).  Sports talk radio host Dan Patrick, on Coburn: “He picked the wrong time to wage his crusade and he embarrassed himself and took a great story and made it bad” (“The Dan Patrick Show," 6/9).

    COLLEGE TRY: CBS News legal analyst Jack Ford said of the Ed O'Bannon case, "When it got started five years ago, there was a suggestion this was going to be Armageddon, this was going to be the last great battle between good and evil and that if the NCAA lost, they'd be out of business and it would cost them hundreds of millions of dollars. It hasn't worked out that way" ("CBS This Morning," CBS, 6/9).

    TAKING INVENTORY: MLB Network’s Mark DeRosa, on the Giants’ commitment to P Tim Lincecum despite his performance declining in recent years: “Whether it is Hunter Pence, (Pablo Sandoval) or Tim Lincecum, how much money do they generate just in the sale of their products, their jerseys and hats and everything? That's part of the issue” (“MLB Tonight,” MLB Network, 6/8).

    MOVING PARTS: ESPN’s Adam Schefter said of the NFL possibly moving the Draft, “It will be a big surprise if it was in New York in any capacity” (“NFL Insiders,” ESPN, 6/6).

    GENERIC BRAND: ESPN’s Pablo Torre said of Texas A&M, Northwestern and Arizona selling generic jerseys with no numbers or player names, “It’s the second-most obvious thing they could after not having the ability to profit off of the actual likeness of a player in a video game” (“Around The Horn,” ESPN, 6/6).

  • Podcast: SBJ's AD survey and AD of the Year

    College writer Michael Smith and editor Tom Stinson give their thoughts on SBJ's Division I athletic director survey, as well as on Duke's Kevin White winning Athletic Director of the Year.

    Tags: Colleges, SBJSBD Podcast
  • The NHL Shift: News and notes, 6/6/2014

    LOS ANGELES — News and notes from four days at the Stanley Cup Final …

    There will be a World Cup of Hockey in August and September of 2016. It will be sanctioned by the NHL and NHL Players’ Association, which will divide a possible $100 million in revenue from the tournament. The event does not need to be sanctioned by the International Ice Hockey Federation. Chris Johnston of Sportsnet has reported that the entire 2016 World Cup of Hockey will take place in and around Toronto. Based on Chris’s reputation, his report is as good as gold. Expect an announcement close to the start of the 2014-15 season.

    NHL Wrap-Around Podcast:
    Christopher Botta and Alex Silverman discuss the week's hockey news before the start of Game 1 of the Stanley Cup Finals

    Expansion: Seattle is not happening, at least not in this decade. There’s no arena and the people who want to build an arena there want an NBA team first. I’d like to see Quebec City become a reality. Canada deserves another franchise and Quebec City has an arena and fan base and is a beautiful place. But I believe we’re a few years from serious discussions about a return there.

    NHL COO John Collins before Game 1, on the blessing of a Los Angeles-New York Stanley Cup Final: “It’s the entertainment capital of the world against the media capital of the world. It’s the top two markets in the U.S. It’s two very good hockey markets trending into great hockey markets. If you want to know why this is good for hockey, try to get a look at who’s in the suites tonight.”

    Of all the variations of “Go Kings Go” signs fans have posted in front of homes, businesses and facilities throughout Los Angeles and surrounding neighborhoods, the best was the marquee in front of a Methodist church. “It reads, “God Saves Souls, Quick Saves Goals.”

    Stick Tap: To the Kings’ Twitter feed, @LAKings, which just keep getting better — not just with the comedy, but with content.


    Islanders Sale Update (or Non-Update)

    In on- and off-the-record discussions with high-level NHL executives who would know, the unanimous feedback was that an Islanders sale from Charles Wang to Andrew Barroway or anyone else is not close. In a one-on-one interview, Commissioner Gary Bettman made that clear with The Shift. When asked if a sale announcement was being delayed until the completion of the Stanley Cup Final, Bettman said “Absolutely not. There isn’t anything to announce.”

    In his formal press conference on Wednesday, Bettman added of Wang, “He is continuing to consider his options and decide what he wants to do. I don’t think he’s reached a firm conclusion yet as to whether or not he wants to sell, sell it all, sell a piece. Until he does, none of us will know what the ownership situation will be. He’s not under any pressure to do it. I think on an emotional level he’s trying to come to grips with what he wants to do, particularly with the impending move to Brooklyn.”


    By the Numbers

    28: New York-area newspaper writers — representing a total of eight newspapers — who traveled to Los Angeles to cover Games 1 and 2 of the Stanley Cup Final.

    5: Celebrities in Gary Bettman’s suite for Game 1: actors Jon Hamm, Ellen Page, Catherine Keener, Kate Bosworth and film director Spike Jonze. Among other stars at the game: Jim Carrey, Steve Carell, Will Ferrell, Larry David, broadcaster/Kings season-ticket holder Al Michaels and bassist Flea and drummer Chad Smith from the Red Hot Chili Peppers.

    10,000: Estimated attendance at New York’s Bryant Park, which was packed to capacity for a viewing party of Game 1.

    4.78 million:
    Total viewership on NBC for Game 1. The game was No. 1 across broadcast and cable television with viewers between 18 and 49 years old. The game also drew 2.46 million on CBC in Canada.

    7.1: The local rating in Los Angeles for Game 1, up from a 4.2 when the Kings faced the Devils in Game 1 of the finals in 2012, proof that the fan base is growing in Los Angeles, a vital market for the NHL. (The game earned a 10.1 in New York — the best-ever rating for the NHL on NBC/NBCSN in that market.)


    And Finally …

    We’ll have more coverage from the Stanley Cup Final — including a look inside the Kings’ executive staff’s preparations for Game 1, along with news on NHL financials and event plans — in SportsBusiness Journal on Monday.

    Tags: On The Ground
  • TV Timeout: The L Word

    NFL Network's Willie McGinnest said of the NFL not using Roman numerals for Super Bowl 50, "The NFL is tastemakers. We create the category" ("NFL Total Access," NFL Network, 6/4). ESPN's Keith Olbermann said, "I seriously doubt that after one year of freedom from the pretentious nonsense of the Roman numeral that we'll ever go back" ("Olbermann," ESPN2, 6/4).

    POSITIVE FLOW: ESPN’s Barry Melrose, on the parity in the NHL: “Every organization is run very good business-wise. They’re there to make money, that’s the difference now. There’s no weak sisters you can pick clean and steal their assets. Those days are over" (“OTL,” ESPN, 6/4).

  • TV Timeout: Career Move

    CBS’ Allie LaForce said of Dan Marino withdrawing his name from an NFL concussion lawsuit, “If you want to be able to get a job wherever, whether it’s broadcasting in the NFL or whatever you may choose, he will actually benefit and be eligible to collect the money from the eventual settlement, even though, he’s not involved in the lawsuit directly. … It kind of seems like a no-brainer to withdraw, although I agree, it’s not the bold stance to take” (“Lead Off,” CBSSN, 6/3). ESPN's Israel Gutierrez said, “This whole Dan Marino inclusion in this and now exclusion in this really shouldn’t change people's way of thinking when it comes to the NFL and concussions" ("Around The Horn," ESPN, 6/3).

    SECOND SERVING: Smith College sports economist Andrew Zimbalist said of the Clippers sale, “This is replicating the Dodger deal more or less and it's on the assumption that the Clippers are going to get a TV contract like the Dodgers. That's not going to happen” (“MLB Now,” MLB Network, 6/3).

    BUFFALO SOLDIER: ESPN analyst and former Bills GM Bill Polian said of the Bills' future in Buffalo, “I don’t think that any of this is predictable in any way because a lot of what we hear is either unfounded or in many ways above the surface and the real work is going on below the surface” (DEMOCRATANDCHRONICLE.com, 6/3).

    TAKING STOCK: 49ers TE Vernon Davis, on Fantex, which offers stock in his career: “It was a wise decision for me to partner up with these guys because I definitely look forward to building my brand” ("Squawk on the Street," CNBC, 6/4).

  • SBJ/SBD's weekly NHL Wrap-Around podcast

    As the Stanley Cup Finals gear up, staff writers Christopher Botta and Alex Silverman discuss the latest hockey news in SBJ/SBD's "NHL Wrap-Around Podcast." Among the topics:

    What a coup it is for the league having New York vs. L.A. in the Finals.

    What the Panthers' front-office layoffs mean in Florida.

    The latest on the sale of the New York Islanders.

    And predictions for the Finals.

    Tags: NHL, Hockey, SBJSBD Podcast
  • TV Timeout: Final Countdown

    The Stanley Cup Final beginning tomorrow features the Rangers-Kings, a matchup of the two biggest media markets in the U.S. that has created significant buzz. ESPN's Dan Le Batard said, "I really feel bad for hockey because the hockey playoffs again have been better than the basketball playoffs and what the Kings are doing is totally ridiculous (with) three Game Seven wins on the road over the teams they've beaten, top seven in the league”("Highly Questionable," ESPN2, 6/2). N.Y. Daily News’ Bob Raissman, on interest in the Stanley Cup Final: “The test that will give you an indication is the ratings put up against the NBA Finals” (“Daily News Live," SNY, 6/2). Modell's CEO Mitch Modell said, "We've sold more Ranger merchandise in the last three weeks than we did the last ten years combined” (“After The Bell,” Fox Business, 6/2).

    CAVALIER THINKING: FS1's Donny Marshall said of Japanese soccer club Omiya Ardija using cardboard cutouts so it appears as if more people are in the stands, "I wish they had done that when I played for the Cavaliers" ("Fox Sports Live," FS1, 6/3).

    SHORT STROKE: ESPN's Keith Olbermann said of talk about changing the Clippers name," The idea that the name Clippers is permanently tainted with racism just because [Donald] Sterling is, is not just a broad-brush, shallow thinking overreaction worthy of, well, Don Sterling, but it demeans those cases in which the team name itself connotes racism” ("Olbermann," ESPN2, 6/2).

    GIVE A LITTLE BIT: PFT's Mike Florio, on an NFL franchise moving to Los Angeles: “I think the NFL likes to keep the idea alive that L.A. is viable even if it isn’t. It allows owners in various cities to squeeze a little bit of the money out of public coffers in order to get new stadiums, under the threat, subtle or otherwise, that they’re going to move to L.A.” (“PFT,” NBCSN, 6/2).

  • TV Timeout: What It Takes

    Former Microsoft CEO Steve Ballmer’s $2B bid to buy the Clippers has remained a big topic of conversation through the weekend. ESPN’s Tony Kornheiser said of the selling price: “If I owned any team in the league at the moment, I would have to think about selling it” (“PTI,” ESPN, 5/30). CNBC's Robert Frank said of the Clippers purchase price, “This is Steve Ballmer just saying, 'I don't care what it takes.' This is a lights-out bid that no one else will rationally ever touch" ("Closing Bell," CNBC, 5/30). N.Y. Daily News’ Mike Lupica, on Clippers Owner Donald Sterling: “Being the most famous bigot in America doesn’t turn out to be nearly as bad for business as one would have thought” (“The Sports Reporters,” ESPN, 6/1).

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