Tue. Oct 19th, 2021


Link an opportunity to get started: The line for the inauguration FT Business of Sport US Summit on October 14 it just gets better and better. Newly added to the schedule is Make an effort chief and Hollywood impresario Ari emmanuel and DAZN CEO Kevin Mayer. They lead a stellar list of speakers with much more. As a scoreboard subscriber, claim your free digital pass using the promotional code Premie21. But if you live in the US, then buy a ticket to join us in person for bookings and dinner at the Lotte New York Palace. See you there.

Speakers at the FT Business of Sport US Summit: Are You Involved?

A chill just drops in the air in New York, while baseball revolves around the playoffs and a new NBA season around the corner. I’m really looking forward to both, after attending a Yankee game earlier this month and keeping an eye on the ballers’ summers.

But the ritual of NBA media days, the informal tip-off for the new season, took a strange turn this year. Yes, there were some unpredictable gems, like Knicks star Obi Toppinhe confessed he do not like the beachbut broadly, the preparations for the year were overshadowed by a visual debate about vaccination status among players.

Although basketball is not alone in the sport, it is difficult to approach the stage of the pandemic, but the intensity of views and nuances of perspectives stands out in a league that has distinguished itself as a champion of player empowerment . What happens if an individual-driven enterprise conflicts with collective public responsibility? Read more – Sara Germano, correspondent for the American sports company

Send us tips and feedback at telbord@ft.com. Are you not receiving the email newsletter yet? Sign in here. For everyone, let’s go

Hesitation for vaccines in sport: NBA becomes political again

Kyrie Irving: in battle, out of court © AP

Nearly two years after the pandemic, many industries are grappling with how to deal with vaccination requirements. In the US National Basketball Association, the debate reached boiling point this week.

On Wednesday, the league announced this will suspend payment for any player missing games because he refused to comply with local vaccine mandates. The policy so far affects three teams in two jurisdictions, the New York Knicks and Brooklyn Nets, and San Francisco’s Golden State Warriors.

The policy came on the heels of a powerful first week of the NBA preseason 2021-22, with stars including the Nets’ Kyrie Irving and the Los Angeles Lakers’ LeBron James weigh in with opposing views on vaccination status.

In recent seasons, the NBA has taken the lead in the safety guidelines of the pandemic. It was one of the first major competitions to conclude in March 2020. Then the basketball league ended the season with players in a strict ‘bubble’ playing inside Disney world in Florida. The NBA has also set a global example for encourage player empowerment, with slogans about social justice on courts and uniforms.

Now the NBA is grappling with the limits of individualism. Player unions for the NBA and other professional leagues such as the National Football League and Major League Baseball, prevents franchise owners from imposing general vaccine mandates.

Texas Senator Ted Cruz: Supporters of Skeptics © Reuters

Other professional sports leagues around the world have the same problems. Reports indicate that only 70 percent of English Premier League football players are cracked.

One owner of the NBA team admitted to the scoreboard this week that the vaccine debate is ‘complicated’. On the one hand, more than 90 percent of the players are fully vaccinated, well ahead of the general U.S. population, with about 56 percent.

But the league does not want a controversial relationship with a small minority of players who either resist the vaccine, but that they do not keep themselves happy about their status.

Tensions have seeped into the national political discourse this week. Texas Senator Ted Cruz support expressed for vaccine-shy NBA players, including Irving, the Warriors Andrew Wiggins, and others, tweet the hashtag #YourBodyYourChoice.

Irving is one of the highest paid and most famous basketball players in the league. He told a news conference this week: ‘Right now just respect my privacy over anything – home games [and] what happens to vaccination ”.

Colin Kaepernick: all at stake © AP

His basic salary for the season 2021-22 is set at $ 34.9 million. If he misses the Nets’ 41 home games – half of the regular schedule – he will lose more than $ 17 million.

It is a lot of money to sacrifice in principle, but it is not without precedent. Star NFL quarterback Colin Kaepernick effectively gave up his career as a footballer to campaign against racial injustice, after no team would sign him in light of his protest march.

There is no comparison with the scourge of institutional racism with personal health choices. But star athletes are one of the strongest influencers of social discourse. The NBA, which for many years has encouraged individualism among players, finds itself in the eye of another cultural storm.

Will Afghanistan’s cricketers play after the Taliban?

Cricket in Afghanistan: a rise that is occurring? © AP

This post was by Benjamin Parkin in New Delhi

Mohammad Nabi grew up in Pakistan as one of the millions of refugees from neighboring Afghanistan. He once recalled his impressions of trips to the land of the Taliban in the 1990s.

“Everything has been destroyed. Roads, buildings, everything gone. Bullet marks were always everywhere, “he said. Cricket monthly in 2015.

Yet, in the years following the 2001 invasion by the United States, refugees like Nabi managed to create one of the most unexpected success stories of cricket: the rise of the national team of Afghanistan.

While nearby India and Pakistan have promoted their cricket power over decades, Afghanistan has only International Cricket Council in 2001. It qualifies for the World Cup in 2015 and achieves full membership status in 2017, playing a Test series against India a year later.

Afghanistan faces India during 2019 Cricket World Cup: the big time © AP

Players like Nabi, a veteran all-rounder, and leg spinner Rashid Khan star in lucrative tournaments like the Indian Premier League. And after years of resistance, Afghan women formed a national team last year.

Progress is now in jeopardy following the return of the Taliban to power. Athletes and sports officials fled the country, while those involved in women’s teams feared for their lives. Stars like Khan have expressed their alarm and dismay over the takeover of the Taliban.

The Taliban has courted cricketers and other athletes to give a more moderate image. But that enthusiasm do not extends to women. When they last ruled, women were banned from education and work – not to mention sports – and there are signs it happens again.

Other teams and the ICC are facing a potentially difficult choice on how to respond. The Australian cricket body has said that a November Test with Afghanistan will be canceled if the Taliban does not allow women to play. The ICC said it was “concerned” but did not threaten action.

Scattered and uncertain about when they will play for their country again, the cricketers in Afghanistan no longer know what future they will have.

‘The way they were accepted all over the world. . . to find that crumbling is a source of great anxiety for the players and the fans, ” Ayaz Memon, a cricket writer in India, said. “It was a team that was part of the world. Going back to a closed, exclusive society can be a bitter pill to swallow. “

Highlights

Real Madrid lose to Sheriff Tiraspol: Not so much © Reuters

  • Uefa, The governing body of European football, has been forced to resign disciplinary proceedings against Real Madrid, FC Barcelona and Juventus about their efforts to start a Super League. Instead, Uefa faces a European Court of Justice whether it can still be the sport’s regulator, as well as taking advantage of running competitions such as the league champion. This legal threat threatens to shake up the European game and achieve a major victory Florentino Pérez, Real’s president. He hopes it can still pave the way for a Super League, a new tournament in which his team is unlikely to face opponents like Moldova Balju Tiraspol, which struck shockingly The Meringues 2-1 Tuesday in Madrid.

  • Endeavor, the sports and entertainment giant, buys a platform for sports betting OpenBet in a $ 1.2 billion deal. Ari Emanuel, CEO, said the acquisition is a ‘strategic addition’ to expand further into the grow fast US sports betting market.

  • Creative Artists Agency is to acquire competitors ICM Partners to create a new talent agency. Financial terms were not disclosed. Last year, ICM acquired in London Star sports, with around 800 customers including a number of football stars from Chelsea’s Saúl Ñíguez on Manchester City‘s Jack Grealish. His strength in the English Premier League compliments CAA’s dominance in North American sport, representing the people like it Phoenix SunsChris Paul a retired NFL quarterback Peyton Manning.

  • The battle for the rights to broadcast the Indian Premier League get hot. The FT reported on Friday that Japan’s Sony and those of India Sea Entertainment is in merger talks. An important part of the strategy is to bid for IPL rights to be offered at auction next month. This will make the companies resist Disney, which owns the existing IPL broadcaster Star Sports, as well as Amazon and Facebook.

Match point

Roger Federer: the next band?

You may have noticed the hype surrounding the release of the latest James Bond movie, No time to die. Tennis lovers took the opportunity to create send this out of the film franchise, with the role of the Swiss legend Roger Federer as 007. Watch the cleverly edited parody trailer, starring Rafael Nadal, Andy Murray and Novak Djokovic, and more.

The scoreboard was written by Samuel Agini, Murad Ahmed and Arash Massoudi in London, Sara Germano, James Fontanella-Khan and Anna Nicolaou in New York, with contributions from the team covering the Due Diligence newsletter, the FT’s worldwide network of correspondents and data, manufactured. visualization pan

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