The business of sports is something of an enigma, at times moving faster than almost any other sector on the planet, and at others being so stubbornly stuck in its ways that change seems unthinkable.
However, when it comes to business those individuals and organizations that stand still risk being made redundant. That is why American sports leagues and their franchises are ensuring that they innovate in order to stand out from the crowd, both online and on the court.
Here are just some of the ways in which the NBA is changing the business of basketball forever, and perhaps securing the future of the sport in the process.
Summer League Looks to Promote Year-Round NBA
One of the big worries for any sports business is that it is too seasonal, meaning there are long stretches of a year when the business is not bringing in meaningful revenue.
The NBA is no exception with its regular seasons and playoffs usually running for most of the first part of a year, only to tail off in the summer months leaving sports betting customers with nothing to wager on, and viewers skipping through their live feeds on the hunt for fresh sporting action.
The league’s solution for this dilemma was smart, as they introduced what is now known as the NBA Summer League. This competition is used as a proving ground for up-and-coming talent as well as allowing NBA coaches to rotate their rosters while the star names that would usually feature in NBA betting tips and online article columns, take a well-earned break.
The NBA Summer League is all set to make a return to Las Vegas, Nevada, in August 2021 as the league ramp up their efforts to make their brand one that rings out no matter the time of year.
NBA jerseys are now worn in more places around the globe than ever before and that only looks set to become more commonplace
Expanding Well Beyond US Borders
Allied to this burning desire to expand and grow, the league has been branching out abroad almost as much as it has at home. The NBA’s global reach has surpassed anything that can be boasted by the NFL, NHL, or MLB, all of whom it has easily usurped as being the most recognizable American sports brand. This is in large part due to the vision of NBA commissioner Adam Silver.
New NBA Team Owners Lurk in the Shadows
With some franchises falling on hard times, there is a new wave of potential team owners and investors looking to leave their mark on the NBA, although it is unclear how such moves will impact the game moving forward. The worry is that vulture-like investors will treat any team they buy like a stock or share, picking it up one minute only to discard it the next.
So far, the league has resisted such moves, but more are sure to come as 2021 plays out. Fans of any team acquired by such entities have good reason to be worried.
Thrust into the World of Crypto
Another interesting shift in the NBA business sphere of late has been the growing prominence of crypto assets. Some players have already been building their very own crypto investment vehicles, such as Spencer Dinwiddie of the Brooklyn Nets.
Meanwhile, another crypto development is the proliferation of digital collectables, whereby investors can buy a crypto asset in the form of a video highlight. It is a strange concept, but one that seems to have found an audience among tech and internet savvy NBA fans and players alike.
Empowering Players Long After They Leave the Court
Sports can be brutal places for athletes, with careers being dashed in a heartbeat by a bad injury or a head coach’s loss of faith. Thankfully, the league and a group of well-intentioned ex-players are now banding together to ensure that players jettisoned from the league are given the tools they need to survive in the business world.
Former baller Charles Smith is one of the ex-stars driving this shift in player care, and there are others out there doing equally worthy work.