Bust, Boom, and Hope: June 25, 2012

By Rick Horrow and Karla Swatek

June 25, 2012

“Bust”: Top Five Reasons the Armageddon is Near
1. The IOC is investigating claims that representatives from more than 50 countries have been selling tickets illegally on the black market for up to 10x face value. Evidence was gathered by Britain’s Sunday Times newspaper, which conducted a two-month undercover investigation.
2. NHL Commissioner Gary Bettman is preparing to takeover the New Jersey Devils if the team fails to refinance its debt by a mid-August deadline. Banking and NHL officials have questioned Devils owner Jeff Vanderbeek’s claim that he found a mystery investor to cover the team’s $77 million loan.
3. Although the NBA’s vetting of prospective Memphis Grizzlies owner Robert Pera has just begun, concerns about Pera’s finances already are surfacing. Pera’s net worth has been estimated as anywhere between $200 million and $1 billion. If on the low end, he’ll need to find deep-pocketed partners to complete the purchase.
4. The St. Louis Rams and the city’s Convention and Visitors Commission are headed to arbitration over Edward Jones Dome renovations after the two sides were unable to reach a deal. If the CVC doesn’t agree to the arbitrators’ recommendations, the Rams can terminate their lease after the 2014 season.
5. Volatile NASCAR driver Kurt Busch got into a heated exchange with an ESPN reporter after last Saturday’s Nationwide Series race at Michigan International Speedway. The incident came after Busch’s first race back from a weeklong suspension after an altercation with a Sporting News reporter at Dover.

“Boom”: Top Five Reasons that Prosperity is Right Around the Corner
1. NHL revenues have increased 173% over the last six years, rising $2.1 billion in 2006 to $3.3 billion this season. NHL Enterprises, which includes NHL Network, NHL.com, and the NHL Center Ice cable packages, has grown 270% over the same period.
2. Fox and NASCAR have begun early negotiations to extend their TV rights agreement, according to John Ourand and Tripp Mickle of SportsBusiness Journal. Fox reportedly is offering enough of an increase to its current 8-year, $1.7 billion contract for NASCAR to consider a deal without going to market.
3. Even though the NBA lost nearly 20% of the regular season to a lockout, Commissioner David Stern recently acknowledged that the league received its entire national TV revenue from ABC/ESPN and TNT. The $930 million in annual TV money comes out to about $31 million per team.
4. The NFL has decided to make the “All-22” coaches’ footage available to fans as part of the Game Rewind package on NFL.com. The NFL is keeping the cost of the package at $69.99 for the season, despite the added “All-22” content. The goal is to maximize the number of casual fans with access to the footage.
5. Not even two years into their partnership, Oakley has renewed its official eyewear sponsorship of the United States Olympic Committee through 2020. Oakley, the first-ever performance-based eyewear supplier to the USOC and Team USA, has licensing rights for a range of eyewear products.

“Hope”: Top Five Reasons That Creativity is the Key to Economic Survival
1. Procter & Gamble is rolling out display palettes with Olympic-themed merchandise at the more than 2,300 Walmart stores across the country. 130 million people go through Walmart each week, and the Olympic merchandise is being given prime real estate on the store’s highly trafficked “Action Alley,” located next to the registers.
2. EA Sports is attempting to rerelease its NBA Live video game franchise after a two-year hiatus. According to Eric Fisher of SportsBusiness Journal, since infamously deciding in September 2010 to eliminate its NBA Elite 11 game, EA Sports moved its basketball production facility from Vancouver to Orlando, built a new development team, and renewed its NBA license.
3. The Michigan state Senate approved temporary alcohol sales at Michigan Stadium for the 2013 NHL Winter Classic. The NHL made alcohol sales a requirement for holding the game at the University of Michigan’s football stadium, which doesn’t sell booze at UM-sponsored sporting events.
4. With the Miami Dolphins set to appear on the latest season of HBO’s Hard Knocks, several players and agents say they’ve fielded calls from marketers interested in getting their product in the show. Though players can’t put anything on their practice uniforms, they can try to get away with subtle product placement at team meetings and in their lockers.
5. International Speedway Corp wants to revive and expand its Daytona Live! entertainment project, and the company is seeking city approval to double the space of the planned complex. In paperwork filed with Daytona, ISC lists a hotel, theater, and residential units as possible uses for the land.

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