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NBA Finals Matchup is a PR Powerhouse Says 5WPR Founder in G911 Exclusive

Written by:
Ronn Torossian
Published on:
Jun/10/2014
NBA Finals Matchup is a PR Powerhouse Says 5WPR Founder in G911 Exclusive

After a difficult decade of ups and downs, the NBA Finals are once again must see TV.

CEO and Founder of 5WPR Ronn Torossian reveals how the league used PR to make that happen: Even if, as reported by Businessweek via an ESPN poll, many fans are tuning in just to watch LeBron James lose, the NBA finals has a prime opportunity to re-engage its fan base with these Finals.

First, you have Miami, the undisputed darlings of new school fans. Flashy, dominant, and aggressive, King James and his teammates offer highlight film basketball with an enviable balance of a strong bench, and versatile role players. Call it flash with a strong solid foundation. Then, you have the San Antonio Spurs. No team in the NBA represents the Old Guard so well as the Spurs. They have history, longevity, and talent to spare. They also have a team full of legitimate superstars that functions more as a team than as individual personalities working together.

But, from a PR perspective, the foundation for bringing the NBA back to the highest levels of fan support began not with the talent and drive of the best players in the world, but with the deft handling of what could have been a public relations nightmare. Due to what some are calling “gold-digging espionage,” and what others have called “just desserts,” the NBA was faced with a Defining Moment during the middle of one of the most exciting playoff runs in history. While teams were battling it out on the court, commissioners and administrators were facing the harsh light of media inquiry… what would they do about Donald?

Playing his cards right all the way through the situation, the NBA commissioner managed to make a staunch ally of both fair weather fans and folks who could not care less about basketball, but would readily vote with their wallets to support a league that would take a very public stand on an issue that mattered a great deal to them.

Thus, when the NBA Finals opened, more than just basketball fans tuned in to watch the Spurs beat the Heat going away. Many eyes were watching as two dominant teams put on a showcase. After a PR win, the entire league got a win on the court. Great basketball, thrilling contest, offering a place for even non-fans to grab hold and enjoy the ride.

And, it all started winning the war in the harsh and unforgiving light of public relations.

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