This week we had the honor to interview again Dr. Ron Dick, associate professor of sports marketing at Duquesne University in the school of business. Ron also worked for 20 years in sports, including 15 years in the NBA with the Sixers and the Nets, and then five years in the NCAA.
📝Show Notes: Through this interview, we touched on the NBA Playoffs, Jokic, Erik Spoelstra, the NBA draft, Wemby going to the Spurs. Then we discussed the WNBA and Wittney Griner’s return. We also touched on the NHL playoffs, the success of the new rule changes in the MLB. We also discussed the PGA with Brooks Koepka winning a major again. Then we touched on the NFL draft and schedule released, the ACC implementing a new revenue distribution model. Lastly we spoke about Vinicus Jr, a Real Madrid player who was victim of racism against Valencia FC.
🚀Best Quotes: Here’s some of the key discussion points and best quotes from our conversation with Ron:
On the recent NBA playoffs, and Erik Spoelstra, the coach of the Miami Heat:
“For the Miami Heat to go all the way to the Eastern conference finals is amazing. it is a credit to Erik Spoelstra. He's probably the best coach in the NBA. Pat Riley is no fool. It's nice to have him behind you, supporting you”.
“But Erik Spoelstra is an awesome coach and he's proved that over a long period of time. He is an adopted son of Jon Spoelstra. Jon Spoelstra is a big name in the NBA as far as attendance and things. And he worked for the Nets. I missed him by a couple months with the New Jersey Nets at the time. He also worked for the Portland Trailblazers and Denver Nuggets. But yeah, I think Eric has done a phenomenal job and they keep rebuilding and doing real well”.
On Wemby who is set to get drafted by the San Antonio Spurs:
“What a great place for him to go to. Tony Parker played his whole career there, almost 20 years and I'm sure Tony will be involved in his development. And Popovich now won't retire for another 10 years because he got another superstar like Tim Duncan and Manu Ginobili from Argentina. So they're all set”.
On Brittney Griner’s emotional return to the WNBA:
“Britney Griner played her first game with the Phoenix Mercury. We had the Vice President of the United States there, which was great. And we had the great Billy Jean King there. We had Dawn Staley there, and a big hug from KD with the Suns, when she got back and she was incarcerated 10 months in Russia”.
“Wow. I didn't realize it was quite that long. And the game had about 10,000 to 11,000 people in attendance. So it seems like it's a good time now to get on board with the WNBA”.
On the NHL playoffs and the Stanley Cup Finals:
“So we have now Vegas (The Vegas Golden Knights) and Carolina in the finals. And there are two newer teams as you mentioned earlier. Vegas did get to the finals that first year. Well, they took our star goalie because we only cover one, Marc-André Fleury back in the day. And they got a lot of veteran players that were tough and seasoned”.
“So yeah, it's great to see some new teams in it that haven't been in it in a while. And the TV ratings seem to be up, interest seems to be high in the NHL so it is good for the NHL”.
On the success of the new rule changes in the MLB:
“I think it's been an overwhelming success and the games have been shortened by about 30 minutes and you're really not missing out anything other than the pitcher walking around the mound and the player stepping a bit, the hitter stepping out of the box and adjusting his batting glove among other things”.
“So you're not really missing anything of substance. And it was something that we have with the shifts being eliminated and you can only throw over the first base. So many times we see that there are more singles and there are more doubles and there's more scoring. And I think that that we definitely have more stealing bases and that really gives interest to a lot of the casual fans that aren't diehards. So we're happy about that”.
On the MLB teams and they current standings:
“The Pittsburgh Pirates and Milwaukee Brewers spend some money, and they're doing well. The Pirates are over 500 for the first time in a very long time”.
“In the NL Central, the Braves look solid. My Phillies are under 500. That's a little disappointing. The Mets who spend a ton of money are just the 500 mark. Tampa Bay Rays don't spend a lot of money. And look at them. They're 35 and 15. They're doing really well”.
Here we are about third the way through the season. The Baltimore Orioles are doing well, and the Arizona Diamondbacks are doing well. So Padres are under 500 and look at all the money they spent. The California LA Angels are about the 500 mark, maybe a little bit better. And they spent a ton of money”.
“So the one team that's dangerous right now, which is really concerning, is the Oakland As and it looks like they are going to be moving to Vegas. Well, it's really scary when you only have 10 wins. And here they were 10 and 40 at one point recently”.
“And that they're a triple A team. I mean, they're not major league ready and, that's not good for the entire league. Obviously by far the best league is the national, the American league. All those teams seem to be over 500. And the league that's really struggling is the Al Central. They're all clustered together in the East. So it looks like things are really positive in the MLB”.
On Brooks Koepka winning a major recently and him and his coach blasting the media afterwards:
“Well, Koepka didn't just blast the media, so did his coach. He blasted the media, the golf channel and this guy Brandel Chamblee. I hope I pronounce his name right. He has tortured logic when it comes to these LIV players. It's obviously very personal for him”.
“And they have this perception, this narrative that the only people going to LIV are washed up former PGA guys. Well, this sticks it right in his face that that's not true. So for Brooks here to come back and win when he's considered a LIV guy per se”.
“I have to say, that makes him look foolish. It makes Brandel looking really off the mark here. And the PGA is just reeling. they hate when one of the LIV guys win the whole thing. So obviously he's still at his peak and I'm glad to see they increased some of the winnings in some of these major golf for the PGA also, obviously the money was there the whole time and they didn't want to share it. Yeah, there's a lot going on in golf, but that really got the attention of a lot of golf fans”.
On the NFL draft, Aaron Rodgers and Tom Brady sitting down with the NFL draft picks:
“That's nice that Tom did that obviously. Who wouldn't want to get some advice from Tom Brady? I mean the guy's been through it all and he did it for a very long time”.
“In the NFL draft the Steelers took Joey Porter's son out of Penn State and cornerback, and he thought he would go to the first round, but they took him with the first pick of the second round in the second day”.
“There are also a lot of stuff about Aaron Rogers now, and boy, everybody's in love with the jets. He already hurt his calf. He showed up for the OTAs and they're trying to get some of the former offensive coordinators and quarterback coaches around him. And man, he was just giddy as could be, coming down Jet's way to go to work. So so far, so good”.
“But when that NFL schedule comes out, people start planning their vacations around the NFL schedule”.
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