Bulls & Bears: Golden State setting NBA's gold standard

 

Tom Mayenknecht hosts The Sport Market on TSN 1040 and TSN Radio, where he regularly rates and debates the Bulls Bears of sports business. He reviews the major winners and losers of the past week every Saturday.

 
 
 
 
Tom Mayenknecht, host of The Sport Market on TSN 1040 and the TSN Radio network, regularly rates and debates the Bulls & Bears of the sports business.
 

Tom Mayenknecht, host of The Sport Market on TSN 1040 and the TSN Radio network, regularly rates and debates the Bulls & Bears of the sports business.

Photograph by: Vancouver Sun graphics, .

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BULLS OF THE WEEK

The Golden State Warriors have had many bullish highs over the past two NBA seasons, including the championship title they won last June, their record-setting unbeaten run of 24 games to start the 2015-16 campaign and what seems like a new record every week. Google search Steph Curry and you’ll see the gold standards he’s setting with his remarkable three-point shooting and average of 30.7 points per game; not to mention proof positive he’s become the league’s social media and video Vine darling. Curry and the Warriors are — quite literally — the new Bulls. On Thursday, the Warriors improved to 55-5 on the season, scoring their 44th consecutive home-court victory and tying the Chicago Bulls of 1994-95 and 1995-96 for longest home win streak in NBA history. All eyes will be on the Warriors the next six weeks to see if they can top the Bulls’ 1995-96 record of 72 wins. Playing every game at a sellout capacity of 19,596 and an average ticket price of $47.38 US, is there another team in North American professional sport that is giving their season ticket holders and fans such a solid return on their investment? The quick answer is no. Golden State is not only golden in basketball operations under GM Bob Myers and head coach Steve Kerr, they’re pressing all the right buttons in business operations under president and chief operating officer Rick Welts and chief marketing officer Chip Bowers. Among the highlights: Their decision to open the gates an hour earlier than usual this season at Oracle Arena so their ticket-buying fans can take photos and video of Curry doing his pre-game thing. Winning is king but that kind of fan-centred decision-making is one reason why the Warriors have climbed up the Forbes charts to sixth place in the NBA at a valuation of $1.9 billion. That’s music to the ears of owners Joseph Lacob and Peter Guber, who bought the team for $450 million in 2010. That’s an appreciation of 422 per cent, or 70 per cent per annum.

BEARS OF THE WEEK

The Vancouver Canucks have had quite the run on and off the ice this millennium. They announced 474 consecutive sellouts from November of 2002 to October of 2014; all entirely legitimate through the end of the run to the Stanley Cup Final in 2011. During the 15-year span since 2000-01, they made the playoffs 11 times, won their division seven times, earned two Presidents’ Trophies, a conference championship and reached Game 7 of the Stanley Cup Final in 2011. No Canadian NHL team has achieved that kind of performance in this century. Yet that’s what’s so jarring about fan response to the lack of activity by the Canucks and general manager Jim Benning at the NHL trade deadline on Monday. It was downright riotous. In what has been a sad season for all seven Canadian-based NHL franchises, nowhere has the drop in the year-over-year record on the ice and secondary ticket pricing, attendance and television viewership off the ice been as pronounced as it has been for the Canucks. And nowhere this week was the disappointment in a team’s GM greater than in Vancouver.

Listen to The Sport Market on TSN 1040 AM Saturdays,7 a.m. to 11 a.m.

Bulls & Bears airs at 9 a.m., followed by Weekend Extra with Sun Sports at 9:30 a.m.

Follow Tom Mayenknecht at: Twitter.com/thesportmarket

 
 
 
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Tom Mayenknecht, host of The Sport Market on TSN 1040 and the TSN Radio network, regularly rates and debates the Bulls & Bears of the sports business.
 

Tom Mayenknecht, host of The Sport Market on TSN 1040 and the TSN Radio network, regularly rates and debates the Bulls & Bears of the sports business.

Photograph by: Vancouver Sun graphics, .

 
 
 
 
 
 
 
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