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Paul Nicholson
Nashvegas TN
Digital Marketing guy for Captain D's. Hockey fan, photographer, and father of 2 awesome boys.

(Opinions expressed here are not those of my employer. Heck, they might not even be mine.)

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Thursday, June 28, 2007

learning from one another

It looks like the NBA is finally starting to learn from the NHL and MLB when it comes to using minor leagues. The My San Antonio Spurs became the second NBA team to purchase a NBA D-league team outright today. They will now have full control over the coaches, the players, and what sort of system the Austin Toros runs on the court. Huge win for the club.

However, something stuck out to me in the article:

During the 2006-07 season, 19 NBA teams assigned 24 players to D-League rosters, and 14 NBA teams called-up 16 players (‘Gatorade Call-ups') while 31 D-League alumni participated in the NBA Playoffs.
Did you catch that?

The NBA is so good at getting sponsorships, that the process of calling up a player from the minor leagues to the bigs is now branded. Every time an article is written or ESPN reports on player movements between leagues, Gatorade gets a plug. I thought the "First Tennessee first goal of the game" was funny, but... wow.

As has been pointed out here and many other places, the Predators and the rest of the NHL* need to find alternative revenue streams if they want to compete with the big boys. Tickets, beer, and t-shirt sales only go so far.

*Yes, even teams like the Leafs. They may have all the revenue they need, but if the league collapses or shrinks down to 6 teams again because it isn't profitable, then... oh wait. I forget. Most of Canada is apparently fine with that. If i read one more article like James Mirtle's today that talks about the NHL's reckless expansion into the US since 1967...i swear...

Tell me, how many of the 'original six' teams were Canadian? (answer: 2) The last time the NHL was made of majority Canadian teams was in 1925.

[end rant]

Oh, and in the marketing department, the Predators rolled out a new website today. It looks...a lot like the old one. Pretty much a clone of NHL.com, which needs a serious redux itself. But it's nice enough. Now lets see if they actually post any good pictures, videos, and useful information. Within 48 hours of the thing actually happening. Press conferences for last weeks games don't count. Oh, and get rid of (or improve) that ghastly list of 100 things to do with tickets. They did do a decent job of covering the draft, i'll give them that. I don't think we've really seen the new site though. This is all the old content dumped into a new layout. It still lists the 3rd Jersey which has been outlawed for next year.

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