Tonight in Unpacks: Jerry West’s résumé as a player and basketball exec is extraordinary -- 22 NBA Finals, 14 NBA All-Star Games, 10 All-NBA First Team awards, nine rings, four teams, one Finals MVP and one league logo. Yet, at 85, the job’s not done. SBJ's Bill King profiles West as part of our Champions class of 2023.
You’re reading the Lite version of SBJ Unpacks. Subscribe to SBJ All Access for the full version of this newsletter, plus daily email alerts, executive transactions, virtual SBJ Event access and dozens of other subscriber-only benefits. Here are the stories you’re missing in tonight’s full newsletter:
Playfly Sports expands in corporate consulting business
Allegiant Stadium rolls out 16 new suites after fan surveys
Saints, Pelicans latest teams to tap 601 Analytics for data
Op-ed: The tech race within European soccer
NBA Summer League a business success
Jon Rahm takes equity in Topgolf Callaway Brands
In this morning's Buzzcast, SBJ’s Abe Madkour gets the week started with:
The impact of Gray Television landing the Suns/Mercury local TV rights
How Inter Miami is prepping for the debut of Messi
Is a downtown San Antonio arena in the cards for the Spurs?
Pros & cons around the WNBA All-Star Game
The Mountain West gets set to decide what to do with San Diego State
Greg Sankey re-ups with the SEC, keeping him as commissioner through 2028
Jay Monahan gets back to work, but his long-term status with the PGA Tour is a question
Champions 2023: Jerry West still wants to contribute
At 85, Jerry West may have the most extraordinary résumé of anyone ever associated with the NBA.
Coming off his sixth season with the Clippers, West remains passionate and engaged, and even if health issues have slowed him a bit, he still wakes in the middle of the night to twist the Rubik’s Cube of the current roster. After last month’s draft, West was feeling more like himself again, and as SBJ’s Bill King writes, he still wants to contribute.
This week’s magazine cover story profiles West as part of this year’s class of SBJ Champions: Pioneers & Innovators, honoring him for a decades-long career that includes 22 Finals appearances, nine championships and one logo.
LOUDON, N.H. — While talks continue on 2024 plans, several drivers and teams are still unsure of how things will come together (or fall apart).
That is the nature of the summer in the NASCAR Cup Series as teams jockey for drivers and drivers and teams jockey for sponsors.
Here's a look at some of the drivers, in the order they are in points, and their silly season status if they are not signed yet for next season.
Martin Truex Jr.
The biggest question remains whether Truex Jr. will return for another year at Joe Gibbs Racing. He has said in the last couple of weeks that he will have to decide soon as it already is three weeks later into the year than he decided in 2022.
"I probably need to do it pretty quick," Truex said July 8 at Atlanta. "A lot of people behind the scenes are counting on it for what they're doing next year."
When asked Saturday at New Hampshire if he had made a decision, Truex simply politely replied: "Next question."
While it would be hard to envision a driver with three wins and ranked second in the current standings leaving, the 43-year-old Truex keeps his circle close, so a decision either way wouldn't be a total surprise. If he doesn't return, JGR has two Xfinity full-time drivers, John Hunter Nemechek and Sammy Smith, who possibly could fill the seat.
With 11 full-time drivers having wins this year, that currently leaves five playoff spots open for drivers with no wins to make it on points.
There are seven races (counting New Hampshire on Monday) remaining, so how many new winners will there be?
My guess is two. With two road courses (Indianapolis and Watkins Glen) and Daytona, those could lend themselves to new winners. Pocono and Michigan, though, also are tracks that can be unpredictable with wrecks and fuel mileage.
But most of the drivers who have led the vast majority of laps this year have won races, and it wouldn't be a surprise if they continue to win them.
They Said It
"With this (Next Gen) car, you don't really know until you race it. Every time I try to predict something, it's usually wrong." — Kevin Harvick on how a change in the tire compound would impact racing