As the famous old song goes, ‘there’s no business like spo(rts) business’ – so with that in mind welcome along to my sports industry reading list, a weekly guide to the best and most interesting writing on the global business of sport. As usual, there’s a mix of interviews, features and analysis below, all on the subject of how sport is being organised and funded – from the biggest issues to the often-fascinating minor detail. Whether you’re a regular reader or a welcome newcomer, a share or a like is always appreciated. Feel free to get in touch via Twitter – @DavidCushnan – or via email. To business:
This week’s sports industry must-reads
- Barry Hearn and his son Eddie are always good value, as the Guardian’s Donald McRae discovered when he sat down with both of them on the eve of the World Snooker Championship and this month’s Joshua-Klitschko heavyweight world title fight.
- Rory Smith’s New York Times piece on the phrase ‘if you don’t want to know the score, look away now’ will resonate with many a UK-based football fan. This is a charming reflection on how sports media consumption habits are (or in some cases, aren’t) changing.
- Dan Rooney, owner of the Pittsburgh Steelers and one of the most influential men in NFL history, passed away last week, aged 84. Here’s an authoritative reflection on his life and achievements by Ed Bouchette in the Pittsburgh Post-Gazette.
- A gripping and brilliantly detailed account here of how the Raiders were relocated by the NFL from Oakland to Las Vegas, pulled together by ESPN’s Don Van Natta Jr. and Seth Wickersham.
- Not quite from last week, but for anyone interested in eSports, the video games industry or even Liverpool Football Club this is a superb in-depth interview with Peter Moore, as he leaves Electronic Arts for the chief executive job at Anfield, by Glixel’s John Davison.
- The British and Irish Lions tour of New Zealand has long been pegged as one of the potential sporting highlights of 2017. Gerard Meagher’s piece in the Guardian is an excellent primer to the business of the Lions and it also asks a pertinent question: how much commercialism is too much commercialism?
- A fascinating piece about sports marketing, science, sporting stunts and shoes from the Boston Globe’s Mark Arsenault, examining Nike and Adidas’ attempts to induce a sub-two hour marathon.
- Russell Jackson, writing for the Guardian, delves into the crowded and fragmenting world of sports talk radio, taking a close look at the landscape in Melbourne, Australia.
- The sports industry is, of course, always eyeing the next potentially valuable new market. It may or may not be Saudi Arabia, but James Dorsey’s piece, published by the International Policy Digest, on the country’s burgeoning sports and entertainment growth strategy makes for fascinating reading.
As always, thanks for reading. Until next time.