Irina Pavlova was a panelist Tuesday at the 2014 Game Changers conference,.a Sports Business Journal forum on women in sports. But her comments weren't limited to that. She spoke to SBJ one-on-one about fans and uniform patches, doing business in the U.S. compared to Russia, Adam SIlver ... and took a swipe at Mark Cuban (always a good thing.)
In particular, she said it's better for teams to accommodate fan interests rather than tell fans what they should be doing!
"I try to pay attention to what all the fans are doing and how they perceive our game-day experience and entertainment," Pavlova said. "(Dallas Mavericks Owner) Mark Cuban has a different perspective. He thinks fans should be focused on the game and not texting. I think you have to go with what your customers want. I see our customers wanting to share pictures and videos with their friends and check in and let everyone know where they are. If they have to hit that send button 15 times because Wi-Fi isn’t working at Mark Cuban’s arena, I don’t think we’re providing the full experience."
On whether she thinks ads on uniforms is a good idea, she thinks its good business and that's good enough ... Careful to note its her personal opinion.
"I personally think we’re missing out on the huge revenue stream on the jersey patch advertising. I'm hopeful that that is something that will come up in the near future for a new discussion. The problem is, there are 30 teams in the league, everyone has a different financial situation, market, different willingness to spend and it’s just hard to get everyone to agree on the same thing."
Although she wasn't asked about the Atlanta Hawks situation, she was asked about Ray Rice and the NFL domestic abuse scandal.
"I think that we all know the right thing to say, but the big question is, Do we have the guts to actually do the right thing? I would like to think that we would do the right thing. There’s no place for something like that in sports. There’s no place for that in society. There should be no tolerance for that. I fully support the decision to suspend him indefinitely."
Of new NBA commissioner Adam Silver, the president of ONEXIM Sports & Entertainment, the Nets third highest official said Silver brought "a freshness to the league. It’s a lot more engaging for the owners, and I think they’re a lot more open for discussion."
One-on-One: Irina Pavlova on fan experience, jersey ads and doing business in the US. - Anna Hrushka - Sports Business Daily