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Messick hired to take NBA global

Messick hired to take NBA global

DAN WEIL

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Andrew Messick, who recently joined the NBA in the newly created position of senior vice president, international, says his primary goal is to help “globalize basketball and the NBA brand” through games overseas, television licensing, sponsorships, NBA product sales and grassroots promotions.

“Building international consumer brands is what I have spent my entire career doing,” said Messick, 36, who previously worked at consumer products company Sara Lee Corp. and the consulting firm McKinsey & Co. At Sara Lee, where he spent four years, Messick was president of Nutrimetics North America, a cosmetics and skin-care subsidiary based in Calgary.

He will oversee the NBA’s Latin American offices in Miami and Mexico City; its European offices in Paris, Barcelona, London, Milan and Munich; and its Asian Pacific offices in Tokyo, Hong Kong, Taipei and Melbourne. The NBA declined to reveal what percentage of its revenue comes from overseas.

Much of the NBA’s international focus this summer will be on the Olympic team, in cooperation with USA Basketball, Messick said. The team, made up mostly of NBA stars, will play two games in Japan and one in Melbourne before the Sydney Games.

Last year, the Utah Jazz and Sacramento Kings opened the season with two games in Japan. No regular-season games will be played overseas in the 2000-01 campaign, but “it is something we’re taking a close look at” for the future, Messick said. “We would like to think that in time we can expand regular-season games to more than just Japan.”

The NBA has scheduled a preseason game in Mexico City for the past several years and will do so again this year, he said.

Messick earned a bachelor of arts degree in psychology and economics from the University of California, Davis, and an MBA from Yale.

AUTO RACING


International Speedway Corp.'s Motor Racing Network named Thomas Ailstock director of operations. He was previously site senior manager for WXCF-AM in Clifton Forge, Va.

RacingOne.com, a Chicago-based Web site about auto racing, named Brad Johnson executive editor. He was previously editor of Inside NASCAR.

BASEBALL


The MLB Players Association promoted Evan Kaplan to category manager of trading cards and memorabilia from category manager of novelties and promoted Tina Morris to Kaplan's old job from administrative manager for licensing.

BASKETBALL


The Dallas Mavericks named George Prokos director of new revenue, service and support, Matt Fitzgerald senior vice president of marketing/communications and Allegra East director of community services. Prokos previously worked in marketing at Automotive Aftermarket, Fitzgerald was senior field marketing manager for Coca-Cola, and East was the community development manager for the Indiana Pacers.

The Cincinnati Stuff of the IBL named J. Jeffrey Ward director of ticket sales. He was previously a ticket sales executive for the Cleveland Cavaliers.

COLLEGES


Quinnipiac University of Hamden, Conn., promoted Al Carbone to assistant athletic director for sports information from sports information director.

FOOTBALL


Players Inc., the marketing arm of the NFL Players Association, named the following players as spokesmen for the 2000 season: Charlie Batch (Detroit), Mark Brunell (Jacksonville), Stephen Davis (Washington), Tony Dorsett (retired), Marshall Faulk (St. Louis), Edgerrin James (Indianapolis), Curtis Martin (New York Jets) and John Randle (Minnesota).

GOLF


Golfsmith International, an Austin, Texas-based maker and seller of golf equipment, promoted co-owner Frank Paul to president from executive vice president.

HOCKEY


The Columbus Blue Jackets, an NHL expansion team, named Russ Mollohan director of broadcasting. He was previously director of MSG Network's "SportsDesk" show.

The North American Hockey League named Dennis Wansor director of communications. He was previously public relations, sales and marketing manager for the Colorado Springs World Arena.

The Chicago Wolves of the International Hockey League promoted Erik Petersen to director of group sales from group sales manager and Kevin Patton to ticket services manager from account executive.

INTERNET


MomsGuide.com, a Marblehead, Mass., company developing a Web site to guide mothers about sports for their children, named Michelle Smith vice president of marketing and business development. She formerly worked at Mast Industries, a subsidiary of The Limited Inc.

MAGAZINES


Host Communications Inc. named Kyle Conway to the newly created position of director of sales for Dave Campbell's Texas Football magazine. Conway previously served as the liaison between HCI's Dallas office and its headquarters in Lexington, Ky.

MARKETING


Millsport LLC of Stamford, Conn., promoted Shannon Kavanaugh to project coordinator and named Nancy Marazzi account executive and Doreen Nichols and Trina Roffino account supervisors. Marazzi previously worked in marketing for Mills Corp., Nichols previously worked for the Dallas Cowboys, and Roffino previously was a marketing coordinator at Interstate Batteries.

Strategic Sports Group, a New York-based marketing agency, named Evan Bashoff an account executive. He was an assistant buyer for May Department Stores.

AWARDS


Philadelphia 76ers general manager Billy King was named sports executive of the year by the Rainbow/PUSH Coalition.

James Host, president and CEO of Host Communications Inc., will be inducted into the Kentucky Athletic Hall of Fame next month.

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