Ramblings – Part 1 Sports.

Just some things being discussed or that have caught my interest over the past week

The Cincy Nine
20pct of a team gets arrested. The NFL posts record ratings for a non Super Bowl Game. What happens in Southern Ohio next year. Do the fans abandon their team ? Does law enforcement become a growth industry ?
Does media finally realize that entertainment is just that, and that the resumes of the participants, whether film, TV or sport falls into the “too much information” category. We consume entertainment to get away from the real world, not get a stronger dose.

The Sports Media Dependency
Sports media is facing an interesting quandary right now. Any sports journalist or columnist goes to work every morning with some level of fear that a pink slip will be on their desk, or worst, an email in their in box telling them to not let the door hit them on the way out. Sure it may be sugarcoated as a buyout, but no one in the newspaper , magazine, local or national news sports business is immune to the fear. These same media members also know that the more interest in the sport they cover, the better chance they have to keep their job.

So they face a quandary unique for these times. Help enhance the interest in the sport(s) they cover, or risk losing their job if interest declines further.

The NBA All Star Game
The Biggest Party on the Continent ?
The biggest question about the All Star Game ? Not whether Josh Howard should make it. If you have to ask, you don’t know. The biggest question is whether the All Star Game will be able to shut down the city. Complete absolute gridlock. Sidewalk gridlock. Road gridlock. Free Buffet Gridlock. 2 dollar slots gridlock. Dwayne Wade shooting commercials gridlock. Party gridlock. Will there be bars opened on Strip sidewalks to serve people stuck in their limos in the same spot for 4 or 5 hours ?

I’ve been to many Super Bowls, The World Series, NBA Finals, The Olympics, The Final Four, The Stanley Cup, The Oscars, Bowl Games, The Consumer Electronics Show, Comdex at its height when cab lines took hours at any hotel at almost any time. I have been to pretty much every major event that draws major crowds, but there is nothing to compare to the NBA All Star Game. The NBA All Star Game Weekend beats them all. The NBA All Star Weekend is the ultimate party weekend. There may be only 17k tickets for the game itself, but there must be what seems like a million people who come just for the parties. Celebs come to truly party. Fans come to truly party. People who have never seen an NBA game come to truly party. Will it shutdown Vegas ? Stay Tuned.

Me and Dennis Rodman – Together Again
If you didnt see the announcement, my former roommate, Dennis Rodman‘s new reality show, Geak to Freak premieres Feb 16th on HDNet. Just as the name suggest, Dennis takes every day people who decide they want to take a walk on the wild side. He turns secretaries into strippers, a biologist into a transvestite, its bizarre but gives Dennis a chance to have some fun, and he takes advantage. Here is a clip \

The NHL Beats College Basketball in the Ratings

The NHL on NBC beat College Basketball on CBS, 1.1 to .70 Is College Basketball doomed ? Does no one care anymore about college basketball ? Is the NHL on a resurgent climb ? (This just in, NHL was up again to 1.3 on NBC) Is NBC just really good ? Are both great sports in a crowded market ? Stay tuned

58 thoughts on “Ramblings – Part 1 Sports.

  1. You once said \”at some point you have to bring in some fresh ideas that shake things up\”. Well Mark your observation of the NHL beating College Basketball in the ratings was very astute and 99% accurate. However as you know it\’s that 1% that causes the shaking. I\’ve got an industrial strength paint mixer. This might sound odd to most, but to a man with the true mindset of Roark, not in the least. Mark, I promise you this will shake the sporting world to its knees. Hell it might even make you lean a bit! No need to post,but we need to talk . Im in the other Big D. (313)629-3848

    Comment by Larry Chatfield -

  2. I have a question. Is Dennis really as much a freak as he is made out to be or is it all a show? I have to think a lot of it is for show….

    Anyway, keep up the blogging!

    Comment by Fractals -

  3. Mark you are truly the funniest most entertainment person in Sports today. Every Owner should be like you and you are what are correct in sports today. I would love to have the honor of an interview with you.
    Read my NBA rant and letter to the commissioner Love your stuff, I read it almost daily.

    Frankye M Solares

    Comment by Frankye M Solares -

  4. Didn\’t mention the KY Derby as the real fun fest.

    Comment by Thomason -

  5. Hey Mark, I have a GREAT idea for a sports reality show! ESPN came close to picking it up a few years ago, but the production company I was partnered with blew the deal. Anyway, I think you’d love it! If you’re intrigued and in the market for programming please get back to me with info on where I can send a (2 pg.) proposal. Again, its a GREAT IDEA, I think you’d like it! CW in NYC

    Comment by Carl White -

  6. Your former roomate was Dennis Rodman? Mine was some kid with a lot of acne that only would drink if it was wine.

    Comment by washing machines -

  7. In regard to the All-Star game, the fact that it is in Las Vegas is scary/hilarious in itself. I truly cannot imagine how ridiculous and potentially ugly it will get. But the events themselves are still lacking. The 3-point contest and the dunk contest used to build a lot of genuine hype and excitement. Now it’s kind of flat. I found this post about changing the events. Pretty funny, especially the “dribbling endurance” competition:

    http://thesportshernia.typepad.com/blog/basketball/index.html

    Comment by John Thewes -

  8. Hi Mark,i am simply trying to bring to your attention an idea that’s
    been kicking around a sports fan forum. This is in regards to the
    NBA All-Star weekend. It has become an incredibly boring event for
    the tv viewers, and the dunk contest has become a joke. in order to
    bring back some of the excitement, here’s an idea which we hope you
    will endorse.a tournament style 1-on-1 contest. it could be a one or
    two day event, starting with 8 or 16 players, which means the champion
    would need to win 3 or 4 matches. it wouldn’t be that bad for the
    players, even if the matches are 10 minutes long, because they are
    spread over a long period.imagine the matchups for Kobe vs. KG, Vince
    Carter vs. LeBron, Dwayne Wade vs. Carmelo. This could be both
    exciting and meaningful (like the dunk contest used to be).For your
    pleasure, here’s the link to the
    discussion.http://forumserver.twoplustwo.com/showflat.php?Cat=0&Number=9074655&an=0&page=0

    Comment by Mike K -

  9. I agree, one of the most interesting blogs .. I always learn something and am typically entertained

    Comment by Genealogy -

  10. Regarding college basketball v. hockey: I don’t think you can make a judgement based on one weekend. College basketbal is still one of the biggest sports in this country, and March Madness is still the prime sporting spectacle in this country, not just in terms of the dollars in TV contracts it commands, but in the audience. What other sport brings all living alumni of 64 schools to the table?

    Comment by jprosser -

  11. Nothing beats College Basketball. Best sport around. UNC vs DUKE this Wed. night. No hockey game is going to be more fun to watch than that game.

    Comment by Jeff DeMeo -

  12. I was unable to find any reference for those Nielsen numbers you quoted. Since one of the regional games last week involved Dallas, is it possible you were only quoting local ratings in Dallas, not national ratings? Also, didn’t CBS have a golf tournament on directly against the NBC Game of the Week?

    Comment by Steve Smith -

  13. Right on Mark. We watch sports to be entertained, nothing more. The only reason althetes today seem worse is more media coverage. Round the clock sports channels need more than highlights to fill the time.

    Comment by Chris Price -

  14. Can’t help notice the irony (intentional?) of the paragraph about the sports writer’s conundrum and the necessity to promote their sport to save their jobs…. followed by the totally objective paragraph promoting the NBA all-star game. Slick work!

    Comment by Bagman -

  15. wait, did I just see Mark include a YouTube link and image??? No way. Someone must have hacked his blog.

    -D

    Comment by David Burrows -

  16. It’s funny but i though Rodman was a little bit more shy in front of the cam than the accountant…

    Anyway, the concept is pretty cool. Just a little bit to clean hehehehe

    Comment by sedu -

  17. So they face a quandary unique for these times. Help enhance the interest in the sport(s) they cover, or risk losing their job if interest declines further………why is this unique? Isn’t this the basic concept of every career we choose… help promote the cause or lose it? (unless of coarse you are in France, where you can’t get fired). love the blog, but don’t understand where you’re coming from on this one.

    Comment by Jeff Mol -

  18. That is the thing we love about this blog though. it isn’t all about the mavs. in fact, very little has to do with his team. how many other owners out there give you an insight into their own world? i think its cool that he takes the time to actually listen to fans and to talk more about business than just basketball. he has enough people covering the mavs in the media, he doesnt need to blog constantly about them.

    Comment by John S. -

  19. I used to be a big fan of Rodman – best rebounder ever.

    Then I met him in a strip club in Vegas the day he got ordered to pay for rubbing his die on a craps dealer’s nuts.

    After I accidently bumped into him and apologized, there was a minor incident between him, his entourage, and me. I was then blamed for doing it on purpose – being that I was with two of their former dancers and was a quest of theirs, they just asked me to apologize, which I did, again.

    As I was apologizing, Rodman freaked out then ran over and started threatening my friends and the stripper that was giving my buddy a lap dance, claiming the conspired to bump into him.

    We were then asked to leave because Rodman “spends millions of dollars there a year” and didn’t want us there anymore.

    Basically, I’m not a big fan anymore.

    Comment by Tyler -

  20. I can’t wait to watch more of Dennis Rodman.

    I wish I was a celeb and partied with the NBA guys. I remember reading a funny article from ESPN about Kyle Korver at the all-star festivities. Kyle comes from my neck of the woods, Creighton.

    Comment by Browie.com -

  21. mark, you have al of these amazing things about all star weekend, yet you wont try to bring one to dallas?

    the best part of the all star game is the events that come with it, not the game… no one would care that many peopel couldnt get tickets…

    lets get the ASG to Big D

    Comment by Zack K -

  22. Josh Howard has just been screwed… best team in the nba and ONE all star… if that doesnt guarantee Dirk for MVP i dont know what will…

    Comment by Zack K -

  23. Geek To Freak. Wow….what a concept!

    Can’t wait for the book to come out. Castro…..will crayons come with that book?

    Comment by JIm -

  24. I don’t think sport media is so innocent, as you described them

    Comment by Saws -

  25. Great post, and we can only hope the NHL is climbing

    Comment by Raj -

  26. Would you rather own the Pittsburgh Penguins with the existing arena deal and the current roster, or a new NHL franchise in Las Vegas complete with its own casino?

    Comment by PJ -

  27. It’d be cool if HDNet broadcast the Globetrotters game against Dennis Rodman’s Bad Boys during All-Star weekend

    Comment by Wes Tacker -

  28. Do you have a hyperlink for the ratings on hoops v. hockey, or is this just a local number for Dallas? What Saturday is being referred to?

    Comment by Steve Smith -

  29. Do you have a hyperlink for the ratings on hoops v. hockey, or is this just a local number for Dallas? What Saturday is being referred to?

    Comment by Steve Smith -

  30. Hey Mark,

    The NHL is doing great on NBC. What I want more of is hockey on HD Net. I currently subscribe to the center ice package and get minimal HD broadcasts.

    Please buy the Pens! That would be the best thing that could happen to hockey. Hell the way it is now you could have your own network broadcasting nothing but HD hockey. Keep up the good work!

    LOTA

    Comment by Lord of The Avalanche -

  31. i haven’t been to the oscars, comdex, the ces, the avns or even a superbowl, but i HAVE been to the olympics, nhl finals, mlb world series, cricket world series, nba finals, mls cup, the final four, the rose bowl (last year), nhl all-star game (this past week), the nba all-star week (in houston) and most importantly…the world cup. and believe you me, nothing, and i honestly mean nothing, compares to the festivities of the world cup. the nba all-star game pales in comparison. basketball is essentially popular in one country. it is a secondary (at best) and often tertiary sport in all other countries associated with the nba. but football [read: soccer] is a primary sport in most of the world. so you can imagine how much fun the world cup would be when people of every race, religion and nationality come together in one stage. it is truly amazing. you should REALLY go to south africa for the 2010 world cup. and if you need a world cup buddy…i’ll gladly volunteer.

    Comment by omer -

  32. Yes, the All Star game will completely shut down Vegas, if for no other reason than it is happening on a three day weekend, the same week of MAGIC, and the Chinese New Year. Throw in Vegas’s near complete lack of public transportation and construction in and around the Thomas and Mack and you’ve got gridlock all weekend long. I’m going to do my best to completely avoid the whole area.

    Comment by Joe -

  33. Hey Mark, just wondering about those #’s you gave out about College Basketball vs Hockey…did the NCAA game actually get a 0.7 share?

    Here in Montreal it’s tough to get college hoops on a regular basis, and there was no way I thought that NBC hockey would beat hoops out in the States..(hockey and big hoops fan)

    Hope to see your Mavs and the Suns in the conference finals!

    Comment by Brad -

  34. If the NBA All-Star game is the ultimate party weekend, why on earth do you continue to insist that you won’t host the game in Dallas? You’re arguments are stupid, as the game is more than just the game, it’s not just about who gets tickets, it’s about the whole city getting NBA fever, and fans participating in events outside the arena to promote the NBA and its players, and its about showcasing Dallas’ all-star players. But for some reason the metroplex will never get an NBA all-star game again.

    Comment by Tim -

  35. Dear Mark:

    I enjoy reading your blog and today I quoted from it in mine. I think you might enjoy my entry, on the poor coverage the NBA has received due to ESPN/ABC. (To refresh your memory, you referred to Chad Ford as “the new idiot in town”.)

    The blog is here: http://dontevergiveupthebasketballblog.blogspot.com/

    Keep up the good work,
    James

    Comment by James Valente -

  36. Mark,

    Thanks for your blog. It is great.

    College basketball is still my favorite sport to watch. It is the most fun and unpredictable. It allows me, for a few hours, to get my mind off the pressures of everyday life. Thank goodness for sports and college basketball in particular.

    Comment by Dan F. -

  37. You havent been to FIFA World Cup Finals that IS the ultimate party. It shuts down COUNTRIES!!

    Comment by mutwirik -

  38. im happy to be connected

    Comment by pam choji -

  39. i dont really love the game but excite me whenever i watching the game is dunking styles.

    Comment by pam choji -

  40. I saw an ad for a plastic blister package opener and thought of you, Mark. And it all started here on this blog. ~sniff~

    Comment by solomonrex -

  41. Yeah, I understand the media section. But sports journalism is not meant to just report the sport; it is meant to promote the sport. It is the job of the journalist to apply their talent to selling the sport. It is after all only entertainment. So why should they be worried about a pink slip? They are in the business of marketing and with that comes high margins and high risk. Otherwise they should go get a government job.

    Comment by Gavin the photographer -

  42. Yes, the All Star game is going to shut down Vegas. Let’s hope none of the players do anything too out of control. David Stern won’t be very happy if they do.

    Comment by basketball training -

  43. I love your blog, Mark. Keep it up.

    –Justin
    (http://jbrownblog.blogspot.com/)

    Comment by Justin -

  44. Mark-

    Love Geek to Freak. We don’t have HDNet here in Seattle, so YouTube may be our only avenue to watch… which brings up a great point. Don’t you think using YouTube for advertising is the same as you have David Stern as the director of marketing for the Mavs?

    Jon

    Comment by Jon -

  45. True,true,true. Sports and entertaninment. Hey Mark. There was a time way way way way back. When dinosaurs roamed the earth it seems and thats about when it seemed like sports figures were “role models” You took your kid to see them or let them watch them and they said ” I want to be like him or her” Now if they say that, more times then not, you re better off saying. “Thats not real” These guys are just people that play sports but you dont want to lead your life like that. I mean unless you have a lawyer on retain and bail money in your locker.” Then answer thier questions from there as honestly as possible without breaking their hearts on the delusions that a good percentage of sports figures could give a hoot about what kids think about them as long as they get thier money.Its all about the LOOT. The days of morals and examples and such are long gone except for the few. Same with the writers.They re told get them to read about something thats going to bring in revenue or Outta here. The Rods always been fun to watch on any day, And last but not least, the hockey ratings. They lost so many when they had the lock out. And then started making it into a “civilized sport” that took the fun out of it too.I have an idea for hockey, bring back the fighting and “wire” a few of the guys so you can hear what they re saying!! lol. I guess it would have to be on cable then but anyhow its got a long way to go to even get back to its mediocre ratings of yesterday. Thanks for your thoughts.

    Comment by Frankie from Lawnside -

  46. Sorry – the links to tickets i was trying to put didn’t work. You can see how expensive i mean here: http://www.stubhub.com/nba-all-star-tickets/?event_id=252821&ticket_finder=4715

    Comment by Jeff Campbell -

  47. I think the all star game in Vegas will be HUGE. If you just look at ticket prices, it’s going to be tougher to get than the finals were last year. I know people plan on taking lots of money to Vegas for gambling, etc, but a trip for this game could easily cost 5 grand when you include tickets, hotel, airfare, etc. Hopefully the game will live up to the hype and the NBA and other major sports leagues will have events in Vegas and eventually sports teams aside from the minor league baseball team.

    Comment by Jeff Campbell -

  48. Please get this on iTunes Store. Please. Please. Please. That is really, really funny. Even if it were free somewhere else and $1.99 on iTunes, I’d still buy it just for the convenience.

    Comment by Brad Hutchings -

  49. I know your a basketball guy, and I’ve never been to the NBA allstar game, but I can’t belive that it’s bigger than the Super Bowl… (Or New Year’s in NYC, Mardi Gras, etc.)

    I’m in Miami right now, and the Super Bowl is HUGE. The city is already packed with media and fans. They are closing down Ocean Ave for 2 days because of the crowds and corporate sponsers are out in force with the huge set ups on the beach. I even saw a blimp already.

    Comment by sports bettor -

  50. Geak to Freak? Due to such name it’s gonna be a success… Probably, I’d watched it!

    Comment by Schina -

  51. you hit it right on in The Sports Media Dependency:
    “So they face a quandary unique for these times. Help enhance the interest in the sport(s) they cover, or risk losing their job if interest declines further. ” – Cuban

    Does “enhance the interest” mean that crap we had to go through the day after Michael Vick lost his water bottle at the airport? Those idiots on ESPN radio kept repeating themselves over and over making character judgements on Vick when all the evidence wasn’t made available. I kept changing the radio station while driving, listened to a song, then would come back. Again. Same talk show moron same words. Over and over, and, we find out later, there was nothing in the story. Now why can’t I see Vick on the TV going over and over how irresponsible sports journalism has become.

    Another interesting story: The Denver Nuggets wont make the NBA playoffs. This was called over a month ago before the ‘brawl in the big apple’ when Denver was both 12-6 and 16-9, and seemed to be rolling.
    Right now they are projected to finish 11th in the West:
    http://www.boxscorebasketball.com/projected.htm

    Comment by greg -

  52. WOW, that preview of Dennis Rodman show “Geak to Freak” was awsome. I hope it get naughtier than that as the show continues.

    Comment by Hieu Le Bui -

  53. Met Dennis this past weekend in Ft Worth. He was out partying i guess after filming saturday night. Stopped off at my friends club for a while. he actually dressed normal. nothing weird. he seemed pretty cool.

    Comment by John S. -

  54. Entertainment. Some use it to escape. Others use it to be inspired. That’s why there was such a debate when Charles Barkley declared, “I am not a role model.” Because some of us believe in heroes. Granted sports heroes are not in the same league as the fireman who races up a burning building or a soldier who constantly faces the ultimate sacrifice. Still, we believe that the character within our athletes means as much as their performance on the court. That’s one of the reasons people love the Mavs. They’re a good bunch of guys who represent Dallas well. At least that’s our point of view. Are we right? I don’t know. I just know what’s right for me. And that means that entertainment means more than just hedonism.

    Comment by jim wegerbauer -

  55. Geak to Freak? That’s peeeerfect for Denis. I think Tara was better off on her own.

    I went on a date once with Denis. He is crazy, but was actually quite the gentleman.

    I will more than likely have to watch his show, but don’t tell anyone.

    You guys were roommates? Interesting.

    Comment by Toni Marano -

  56. Is HDNet planning on streaming content online? I have Comcast and can’t get it thru cable, and can’t install a dish, but want to watch!

    Comment by Mike Maddaloni -

  57. God damn the Geak to Freak show looks stupid! But I’m sure its gonna be a success. I would love to watch, however, beeing in Europe I gues thats just not gonna happen.

    Comment by Kasper Retvig -

  58. Mark do you think there is somewhat of a double standard in terms of how the media and general public judge the NFL compared to other sports? Take the Cincinnati team, no one really seems to care, but what would happen if 3 guys on the Mavs got arrested this season? People would be bashing the NBA to no end. And then steroids… The NFL doesn’t even want to test for HGH, and they committed $500K to develop new testing methods… that’s not taking it seriously, that’s a publicity stunt. How does the league get away with this?

    Comment by Jake K -

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