By Rick Horrow
Podcast edited by Tanner Simkins
- To commemorate fans and players across Latin American and US Hispanic communities, the NBA is celebrating its 13th annual Noches Éne•Bé•A Latin nights program. Throughout the month of March, NBA games will feature celebratory warmup shirts and merchandise as well as 15 games with in-arena festivities. All 30 NBA teams wearing specially-designed Fanatics Branded Noches Éne•Bé•A warmup shirts during the first two weeks of March. The celebrations will be supported by unique content on the league's English and Spanish-language social media pages. The NBA has proven time and again that it is a trend setter in cultural outreach across the globe, whether than means signing signature Eastern European players or conducting off season marketing tours in China. The annual Latin nights program is just another example of this mindset, albeit conducted here at home.
- Human Kinetics and Mascot Books have launched one of the most anticipated sports business chronicles ever assembled, The Sport Business Handbook: Insights From 100+ Leaders Who Shaped 50 Years of the Industry. This anthology, compiled by Rick Horrow with Rick Burton and Myles Schrag, will take fans, students and those involved in the sports and entertainment industry into the lives of more than 100 executives during the boom era of sports business and marketing. The collection features pieces from league commissioners such as Gary Bettman of the NHL, Don Garber of MLS, Paul Tagliabue of the NFL, Oliver Luck of the XFL, and Nick Sakiewicz of The National Lacrosse League; executives such as NBC Sports president Mark Lazarus, Liverpool's Peter Moore, the Vikings' Kevin Warren, and Larry Lucchino of the Red Sox; administrators such as the University of Oklahoma's Joe Castiglione, Arizona State's Ray Anderson, and N.C. State's Deborah Yow; and professional athletes such as the Miami Heat's Shane Battier, Olympic champions Scott Hamilton and Angela Ruggiero, and baseball Hall of Famer Cal Ripken Jr. These leaders tell stories in their own words about lessons learned, achieving success and overcoming failure, and ultimately inspire readers to forge their own paths in the industry. Disclosure: Tanner Simkins is also a featured author in this book.
- The NBA sees a big payoff for a little patch. The NBA's jersey patch program is more than halfway through its three-season test and the results are clear: It's a slam dunk. As the league continues to search for new revenue, the patch program has delivered. The 29 deals – the Oklahoma City Thunder remain the only club without a patch partner – generate more than $150 million per year in new revenue for the teams, while sponsors receive 25%-50% more exposure than they would have on a comparable spend, according to Navigate Research. With that in mind, the league is trying to figure out how to make more money off the program. One way is to expand where jerseys with team patches are sold. Fans want exact replicas of what players wear on-court, but those can't be found at a department store or sporting goods website. Fans can only get those at team-controlled stores or sites, and even then they are tough to find. The patch sponsorship pilot program has far exceeded league expectations. In April, 2016, Commissioner Adam Silver projected the sponsorships would generate around $100 million in newfound revenue, so the league has exceeded its goal by more than 50%.