Washington Wizards Rumors
The Los Angeles Clippers were casually linked to a Russell Westbrook trade in the past before he was eventually traded to the Washington Wizards and Los Angeles Lakers in each of the past two offseason. The interest in Westbrook has led some to speculate that they could trade for John Wall, who the Houston Rockets are attempting to move. “The Clippers were never interested in Russell Westbrook,” said Zach Lowe on his podcast. “They were a rumored Russell Westbrook trade in a few places whenever that happened. They were never interested. That was never a real thing. I think they value their optionality too much.”
What is your take on the Zach LaVine FA rumors in 2022? How realistic is it for the Celtics financially and roster wise? Thanks, Jeff. Brian Robb: LaVine is a name that has been floated for a little bit as a potential target for Boston if Bradley Beal elects to stay put in Washington. His age and position do line up fairly well among Boston’s current group, however, there are some significant obstacles in any pursuit of the shooting guard during the next year.
A potential Celtics free agent target could be Chicago’s Zach LaVine, who is entering the final year of his contract. He will have to prove he can lead the Bulls to the playoffs before a contract extension. LaVine changed representation recently and signed with Klutch Sports, which is usually the move for players who want to maximize their free agent potential. LaVine, 26, just coming off helping Team USA to the gold medal, will ask for a maximum contract in the open market. The Olympic experience may have enhanced LaVine’s value because he was asked to be a three-and-D player, sparking the Americans with his full-court defense and ability to run the floor. In the case that Bradley Beal decides to stay in Washington, LaVine could be the Celtics’ No. 1 target. The Bulls, who added DeMar DeRozan and Lonzo Ball in the offseason, have full intentions to be a factor in the Eastern Conference .
First, let’s address the elephant in the room. Why was Michael Jordan ringing the bell on IPO day? Well, Michael Jordan, Dallas Mavericks owner Mark Cuban, and Monumental Sports CEO Ted Leonsis — the owner of the NBA’s Wizards, the NHL’s Capitals, the WNBA’s Washington Mystics, and more — invested $44 million in the Swiss company in 2015. Keep in mind; sports betting didn’t even get legalized in the United States until the Supreme Court ruled PASPA unconstitutional in 2018, paving the way for states to self-regulate retail and online sports betting. But the early bet has paid off tremendously. Sportradar covered about 325,000 live events at the time of the investment but now covers about 750,000 events annually, providing data analytics and other technology services to 900 sports betting operators and 350 media companies.
The valuation at the time of their investment wasn’t disclosed, but Sportrader revealed in 2018 that the business was worth $2.4 billion. Given they invested three years prior, they likely came in at a significantly lower number, but still, even at that number, their $44 million would be worth nearly $150 million today. There’s nuance to this, of course. We don’t know if they invested additional capital, were diluted through later rounds, etc., but you get the point — Michael Jordan, Mark Cuban, and Ted Leonsis all made significant money on the deal. Sportrader Valuation: 2018: $2.4 billion. 2021: $8 billion (+233%). But here’s the interesting part: Sportrader did nearly $500 million in sales last year, but just 11% of that came from the U.S. market, where they are already the largest provider of data to sportsbooks.
Spencer Dinwiddie: In this way, blockchain can be used to enrich national sports with greater fan inclusion—by bringing more incentives, including financial rewards, into the equation. As the gaming industry has created a highly lucrative market where play equals work, die-hard sporting fans could be encouraged to monetize their input into processes like choosing the NBA’s MVP award. With fan engagement emerging as the focal point of social media apps such as Clubhouse, Patreon and Cameo, more intimate experiences are what we as a society are searching for. It seems only natural then that the spectator sporting industry should follow suit. After all, diehard fans are often so closely affiliated with their preferred team that they use the proverbial “we.” Don’t lie, we’ve all done it.