NBA's Global Dominance Spreads...

6-3-19 - Andy Dolich
Over 640 million Chinese basketball fans watched NBA programming during the 2017-2018 season

Andy Dolich -- 2015

Dribbling Around the World

By Andy Dolich

In June I wrote a piece entitled NBA World Ball. A few signature events have occurred since then that showcase the NBA's global footprint getting larger by the day.

Joe Tsai, the Chinese co-founder of global e-commerce powerhouse Alibaba, recently paid $3.4 billion dollars for the Brooklyn Nets and their arena, Barclays Center, to Russian Oligarch Mikhail Prokhorov.

Prokhorov was the NBA's first non-North American owner in 2010 and the architect of moving the team from New Jersey to Brooklyn in 2012. Let's give props to former Cal Bear basketballer,now Nets GM, Sean Marks from Auckland, not Oakland. Marks was the first Kiwi to play in the NBA. He recently acquired two guys named Kevin Durant and Kyrie Irving.

9-9-19 - Andy
Australia 98, USA Men's Team 94
9-9-19 - Andy
USA Men's Team 93, Turkey 92 (OT)

On August 24, in a run up to the World Championships in China, the Aussies beat the U.S. Men's National team in front of 53,000 in Marvel Stadium, Melbourne. This marked the USA's first loss in 78 games in international play.

On September 3 the USA hung on in OT to beat Turkey, 93-92, as the Turks missed four free throws in the final 10 seconds.

Dr. James Naismith, a Canadian, is credited with inventing basketball in 1891. It was former NBA Commissioner David Stern and his visionary posse of business brains who saw the future of global growth. Global media deals, new futuristic arenas and basketball's international popularity continue to push the value of NBA franchises higher.

When the Toronto Raptors won the NBA title on June 14, 2019 it marked the first time that the NBA champion wasn't from America. During the 2018-19 season 108 of 494 roster spots were filled by international players. Over 640 million Chinese basketball fans watched NBA programming during the 2017-2018 season. The 2019 World Basketball Championships has already tipped off at eight venues in China with the finals scheduled for September 15. 

The 2020 Olympics in Japan begin on July 25 where the world will be somewhat surprised seeing men and women earning gold medals in the first 3x3 basketball competition.

Seven years after "Linsanity" dominated the Big Apple and beyond, Palo Alto's Jeremy Lin, the first Asian-American player to win an NBA championship, signed with Beijing Shougang Ducks of the Chinese Basketball Association.

Lin and Tsai figure to help the NBA extend its growth in Asia. The NBA will have preseason games in China, Japan and India, the home country of Vivek Ranadive, the owner of the Sacramento Kings. The NBA Champion Raptors  will take on Houston for two in Saitama City , Japan.  The LeBron Lakers  and the Nets  will play two preseason games in Shanghai and Shenzhen.

The globe is in the shape of a ball and the NBA is dribbling far and wide in growing its business.

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Andy Dolich has over five decades of leadership in the sports industry, including executive positions in the NFL, NBA, MLB, NHL, pro soccer and lacrosse. Presently Dolich is COO of the Fan Controlled Football League (FCFL) and teaches sports business at Stanford's School of Continuing Studies. Dolich is also co-author of the new book:
Oakland Roots 2, FC Juarez 4 

9-9-19 - Roots
A Roots shot on goal is unsuccessful. Photo by Austin Brewin.

Michael Brewin

Oakland Roots turned back

By Michael Brewin

The Oakland Roots opened up their second game of the season against FC Juarez to a sold out crowd Sunday evening at Laney College. FC Juarez, currently 16th in Liga MX (Mexico's first division), came out with all guns blazing and Diego Roland scored their first goal within three minutes. Roland then added another goal five minutes later. The Roots could not figure out how to stop the Bravos de Juarez, who added a third goal courtesy of Dario Lezcano at minute 12. The stunned crowd still found it in them to chant "Go Roots." The Roots seemed to find their game and started playing, which was rewarded at minute 28 with a goal from Benji Joya, giving the home crowd hope. The game was fairly even until just before half time when FC Juarez struck again on a beautiful goal from Roland to complete his hat trick before half time. FC Juarez 4 Roots 1.

To start the second half FC manager Gabriel Caballero subbed out six players. The subs did not drop the high level of play, however the Roots raised theirs by scoring a nice goal in the 49th minute by Andres Jimenez. Roots manager Paul Bravo brought on six subs, including crowd favorite Julio Cervantes and youth national team player Quinn Rodgers. The Roots continued to attack away but could not find another goal and ended up losing, 4-2.

In the end, this was a case of two teams at different stages. FC Juarez is eight games into their season in arguably the best league in the Americas and Roots is in their second game, period. The scoring line reflected the disparity. The Roots will get better on the field but nothing can be better than the crowd support and the atmosphere at the game.