In Jacksonville, Don Coble writes many believe the purpose behind the creation of the Race Team Alliance is for team owners to have a "seat at the table" when the new NASCAR TV money is "carved into pieces." NASCAR's current TV contract "calls for the tracks" to get 65% of the pie. NASCAR is "next in line," and race teams get what is "left over." The next TV contract with Fox and NBC will "translate to an extra" $19M in revenues for the sanctioning body compared to this year’s contract. While the RTA was developed to "find ways have more buying power with hotel, rental car and insurance rates, the driving force is money" and that "leads everyone back to television money" (FLORIDA TIMES-UNION, 7/18).
WHAT'S THE POINT? SPORTS ON EARTH's Shaun Powell wrote NBA Commissioner Adam Silver's idea about creating a midseason tournament is all about "making the game more attractive (and by extension, generating more dough) and gimmicky for TV, not necessarily better." Powell: "We’re supposed to celebrate a 'winner' four months before we crown the real champion? And who exactly would muster enough interest to care? ... Would any player, or coach for that matter, really treasure a trophy in February? Is that something to brag about?" (SPORTSONEARTH.com, 7/17).
PRESS YOUR LUCK: The possibility of a revised NBA Draft Lottery was a hot topic on the ESPN afternoon talk shows Thursday. The Boston Globe's Bob Ryan said, "The NBA is overreacting to the criticism it received for the tanking, which was aberrational and the degree to which will not happen again. The fact is they cannot please all the people all the time." Dallas Morning News columnist Tim Cowlishaw said, "Getting rid of the Lottery and just going back to the old system would be better than this new system" ("Around The Horn," ESPN, 7/17). ESPN's Bomani Jones said, "We've seen the history of this lottery. They get spooked out by weird results and then they end up making changes. ... This is another reactionary change by the NBA because the result was kind of funny" ("PTI," ESPN, 7/17).
A NEW FACE FOR LACROSSE: In Denver, Benjamin Hochman writes MLL Boston Cannons MF Paul Rabil is the "face of U.S. lacrosse," as he is "one of those dudes who just separates himself." Rabil is on pace to be the sport's "first million-dollar player," and Hochman writes, "Lacrosse needs this guy. And lacrosse needs this guy out there more." He is the "type of transcendent athlete who can inspire those who admire." It is "hard to pick his personality off the screen," but hopefully for the sport, Rabil will be a "name we start knowing, a la Clint Dempsey from a month ago" (DENVER POST, 7/18).