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"Economic reality deals sports jarring hit"

2008 December 22
by Skip Sauer

I’ve talked with a number of reporters recently on the subject of the impact of the economy on sports — the reverse of the usual question. Perhaps the growing recognition that sports is dependent on the larger economy, and not the opposite, will put a dent in the vast overstatement of sports’ economic impact ….. naah, we’ll get through the economic downturn and things will get back to normal. I’m sure. … Well, maybe not so sure. Let’s hope we get through the recession intact, at least!

Anyway, the conversations have interesting, and fun. At FoxSports.com, Greg Boeck captures more than a sound bite of my views in an article that is, I think, spot on. The money quote:

“Sports have been riding a tide of economic growth and tremendous growth in media-based revenue,” says Sauer. “You didn’t need to pay much attention to what was going on to make money owning a franchise. You go along for the ride, whether you are a bad manager and put a bad product on the field or a good manager with a good product. You can always sell out to someone who wants to love the team.”

Not anymore.

Not sure that I said the word “love” (cellphone signals can get sketchy at times), but that will do.

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