People Who Made Sports Business Headlines In '13, Part Two
Many brands, execs and ideas caught our eye in ’13. Here are five that, for better or worse, made an impression this year. See yesterday’s issue for five more newsmakers from this year.
|Ranadive has plans for a new downtown arena |
following his purchase of the Kings
The NBA Kings faced an uncertain future and a possible move to Seattle until a group led by Vivek Ranadivé stepped forward and purchased the franchise for $534M. Ranadivé’s commitment to Sacramento, with plans for a new downtown arena and adjoining mixed-use development, fired up the fan base and brought new hope to the Kings faithful.
BRIAN ROLAPP: DIRECTING THE NFL’S MEDIA MOVES
The eyes of sports media were trained on Brian Rolapp in July, when the NFL announced that he would be replacing Steve Bornstein as the league’s top media exec in the spring. One of Rolapp’s first responsibilities will be to figure out what to do with the NFL’s Thursday night package. Given his background with digital media, Rolapp also will be looking into how the league deals with over-the-top providers and social media companies.
MICHAEL WALTRIP: A BUMPY ROAD
A slip of the wrist sent Clint Bowyer’s car spinning just before the end of the NASCAR Sprint Cup race at Richmond. The intentional move changed the outcome of the race and put Bowyer’s Michael Waltrip Racing teammate, Martin Truex Jr., into the Chase. But it proved costly. NASCAR penalized the team $300,000, NAPA dropped its sponsorship of the team, and Waltrip, who appeared complicit in the scheme, was left apologizing and seeking to regain the trust of fans.
Schuerholz helped lead the drive to get the Braves
a new ballpark in suburban Cobb County
The Braves, led at the negotiating table by senior club execs John Schuerholz, Derek Schiller and Mike Plant, stunned the greater Atlanta area and the sports industry at large with their plans to leave Turner Field and build a new ballpark and mixed-use development in suburban Cobb County. The team’s bold plan, valued at more than $1B, seeks to take advantage of both population and economic migration patterns, as well as ancillary development projects that have become increasingly important in baseball.
HANK RATNER: UPDATING MSG
MSG completed a three-year, $1B renovation to bring a fresh look to the 45-year-old arena. MSG President Hank Ratner spearheaded the massive redevelopment, topped off by the Chase Bridges -- the project’s signature feature. Architect Murray Beynon designed the bridges, which hold 433 seats at the top of the arena and provide spectacular views of the action on the court and on the ice.