Dan Klores is a Peabody Award-winning filmmaker and playwright and the founder of Dan Klores Communications. Here's his take on Linsanity.
Roy Hobbs has come to Broadway in the form of a sound and sweet basketball player named Jeremy Lin. So much has been written about the Harvard-educated point guard that even the one-woman dating service Kim Kardashian has taken a backseat in the media. But as the Knicks try to replay ’69, we must pause for a moment to consider the tricky media problems that must be addressed with finesse and intellect.
There is some great basketball being played by gifted athletes right now. I’m not talking about the games at Rucker Park or in the lockout-free gyms of L.A., Houston or Philadelphia, where the likes of Melo and La La are speed-dialing their press agents following every neo-conversation … No, these contests are on live on network TV from Minneapolis and Atlanta: the WNBA Finals. And it’s now way past the time that news media get hip and give these women their due. The league has teams in 12 cities, and most hometown dailies don’t assigns a beat writer to all of the teams' games. Well, it’s time to wake up, dudes. (And don’t blame this on the fact that the sports world is run by men.)
But why change now? The WNBA (in my opinion, by far the most meaningful legacy of the ballsy and ingenious NBA commissioner David Stern) needs to survive and thrive. The fact is, thousands of women and families attend games in major cities every year, and that means there are consumer products to be hawked and revenue to be generated. But the “old way” of selling the league needs to die.