The NBA has a lot happening right now with their Conference Finals boiling over and with the spotlight of the sports world shining brightly in their direction. So with this week’s “Five for Friday” we will discuss an ownership acquisition involving the Cleveland Cavaliers as well as future plans for the league. We will also address Nationwide Arena sales considerations and the troubles of this year’s number one NFL draft pick.
1. Today’s Sports Genius: David Katzman – When LeBron James hit that amazing buzzer-beating three pointer in game two of the Eastern Conference Semifinals, the stock of the Cleveland Cavaliers franchise sky rocketed. A man by the name of David Katzman who owned at least 15% of the Cavaliers recognized this might be his best chance to sell his share of the organization while everything was going good. Now that the Cavaliers are down three games to two in a best of seven game series with the Orlando Magic and considering that LeBron James is a free-agent soon, it looks like selling his share of the organization might prove to be a superb business move.
2. Nationwide Arena sale under discussion – Currently the Columbus Blue Jackets’ revenues are not covering their operating costs. As a result there are discussions about the sale of Nationwide Arena to Franklin County. The deal requires that a higher tax is imposed on alcohol and cigarettes in order for Franklin County to have the funds to finance the purchase of an arena.
3. NBA basketball returns to Mexico in October – The Phoenix Suns will play the Philadelphia 76ers in Monterrey, Mexico in a preseason match-up on October 18th. This will become the 18th game ever played in Mexico by two NBA teams and will become the second time in Monterrey. The NBA Mexico game in 2009 will help the NBA to build a larger fan base across the border.
4. Report: Matthew Stafford faces endorsement challenges- Two years ago Brady Quinn arrived in Cleveland from the University of Notre Dame as a first round pick in the NFL draft. He did next to nothing to land endorsements from companies like Hummer, Subway, Xbox and Nike. This year’s number one pick Matthew Stafford doesn’t have it as easy. Due to a horrendous economy, a winless 2008 season in Detroit, and team troubles acquiring new players, Stafford has it tougher than any other recent top QB pick.
5. NBA, ABC Won’t Automatically Lose From Matchup – It has been discussed that Nike could lose millions if the Los Angeles Lakers don’t face the Cleveland Cavaliers in the NBA Finals after creating a series of commercials featuring LeBron James and Kobe Bryant. However let’s discuss whether ABC, the network which hosts these NBA games, would lose out as well if the ideal match up of the Los Angeles Lakers and Cleveland Cavaliers didn’t manifest. Former president of CBS Sports Neal Pilson suggests the ratings of an NBA Finals relies directly on the quality of the games and the length of the series, not necessarily which teams play.