Hello, and welcome to this segment of sports law and data analytics. I am Nellie Drew, and I am the Director of the Center for the Advancement in Sport and a Professor of Practice in Sports Law. We continue today with our discussion with my colleagues in this course, Dr. Bruce Pitman, (former) Director of the UB Institute for Computational and Data Sciences, and Mr. Gerry Meehan, a sports law and management expert who's serving as a special advisor to this project. In the first segment, we explored how important data is, what it can provide, and why an analysis of data in context is important. We also identified three basic areas of the sports industry in which data is becoming a fundamental important; team management, agency or sports representation, and facility operations. We concluded that data is essential for effective decision-making, when based upon sound analysis combined with intuition and experience. We also recognized that there are various legal and regulatory frameworks in place that regulate the use of data in certain situations. This segment will focus upon using data analytics to address player valuation, team performance, and roster management. Mr. Meehan will begin with an overview of a typical organizational chart for a pro sports team front office. Thanks, Professor Drew, and welcome everybody again to the second week of our presentations. This segment is on sports law, data analytics, and team operations, examining the general manager's and operation's staff roles in a professional hockey team in the NHL. First, let's look at a clip from the movie Moneyball, which introduces us to the team owner/general manager dynamic in the salary cap and sports analytics era of pro sports. We're not going to do better next year. Why not? Well, you know we're being gutted. We're losing Giambi, Damon, we're losing Jason. Done deal. We're in trouble. You've found new guys. You found Jason. You found Damon. I need more money, Steve. Really, I need more money. We don't have any money. I can't compete against $120 million payroll with $38 million. We're not going to compete with these teams that have big budgets. We're going to work within the constraints that we have and you're going to get out and do the best job that you can recruiting new players. We're not going to pay $17M a year to play players. I'm not asking you for $10M and $20M, $30 million. I'm just asking you for a little bit of help. Just get me a little bit closer, and I will get you that championship team. This is why I'm here. This is why you hired me. I got to ask you, what are we doing here if it's not the win a championship? I want to win. That's my bar. My bar is here. My bar is to take this team to a championship. Billy, we're a small market team and your small market GM. I'm asking you to be okay not spending money that I don't have. I'm asking you to take a deep breath, shake off the loss, get back in a room with your guys, and figure out how to find replacements for the guys we lost with the money that we do have. I'm not leaving here. I can't leave here with that. What else can I help you with? It's a good offer and you got a match it. I need another day. His mind is pretty made-up. I got a call coming in. I'll get you back. I promise you, I'll let you know. Alright. Yeah. Billy, Scott. I just got off the phone with Dan. No, you didn't. I was surprised you didn't call me. Stop. I got Johnny for 7.5. He is not playing anywhere else. Is that's the deal that you just made? Boss, he just upped it to 7.75. Are you there? We had a deal, Scott. We have a deal, if it's a million. Man, you played me. I was just doing my job for my career. No, you are playing me, and you still playing me. Congratulation, asshole, you win. Now that we have an understanding of the relationship between ownership and team management, let's take a look at the basics of team operations. The basic principles: a highly competitive environment. The job is basic. Performance orientation rules. Number one: you win more games than you lose or you're in trouble. Number two: make the playoffs, or you're in trouble, and Number three: make a run for the cup every once in a while, but know when you are ready. Everything else is secondary, but complimentary, to the success of your organization. How do you compete successfully? You understand the objectives and functions of team operations. First & most important is 128
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and acquisition. Secondly, athlete development and retention. I'll explain those as we go. Team and coach performance assessment. You need to organize your hockey department effectively. Here are the key management positions in a professional hockey team, an NHL hockey team. The proper use of the organization charts will follow, but I'll just run through the various important roles that exist on this first view of the chart. Obviously, the owner is the owner of the team, and his job is to make sure that everything is running smoothly and under the general manager's direction. The General manager's role is quite obviously, he runs the show. He's in charge of all aspects of the hockey operations and will delegate as needed to different assistants and staff members, on his own, as rule. The executive assistant to the general manager may be the most important position in this in terms of communicating between different department heads. The executive assistant always has access to everybody involved, and he/she may basically manage the general manager's schedule. The assistant general manager will often be the administrative lead of the hockey organization and will manage the salary cap management. The director of professional evaluation and development runs the professional scouting function. The director of amateur evaluation and development runs the amateur evaluation function. The head coach and his assistants run the team. The medical staff supports the head coach and the assistants; and legal counsel has an important role in this as well, which we will get into.