League to lay off about 80 amid economic slowdown, Stern says
LONDON -- The NBA is eliminating about 80 jobs in the United States, the first major American sports league to announce layoffs because of the worldwide economic turmoil.
Sports and the economyIf the troubled economy isn't already touching your favorite sport, it will soon. ESPN.com takes a comprehensive look at the future financial state of our games. And for more, watch archived video of "Outside the Lines" for a discussion of today's economy and how it will directly affect the business of sports franchises and sports fans across the country. • Joyce: Worst is yet to come for sports
• Tennis: Uncertainty amid market volatility
• Bodo: Tennis players underpaid?
• Golf: PGA Tour keeping close tabs
• Boxing: Boxing economy on the ropes
• Community: Share your story
• Chat wrap with Gare Joyce
Commissioner David Stern told The Associated Press last month the league would cut staff in anticipation of the downturn. He said Sunday the figure would be about 9 percent of the American work force, and the league confirmed the number of jobs the next day.
"We made the decision some months ago that the economy was going to be a bit wobbly so we began a belt-tightening," Stern said in London, where the New Jersey Nets beat the Miami Heat in a preseason game.
The NBA continues to hire in other countries, he said, as it seeks to grow internationally.
Stern emphasized that the league is still hitting its business targets.
"My guess is that by the time we tip off in a week or so, we will be down modestly in season tickets. ... We think we'll be up in revenue, but I just can't say for sure whether we'll be up or down in attendance because it's just so touch-and-go, because sports tickets are very much disposable income," he said. "So, we're not going to see a huge impact, but I dare say we will see some impact."
Copyright 2008 by The Associated Press
MORE NBA HEADLINES
- Grizzlies' Hollins all for anti-flopping rules
- Spurs' Duncan divorcing wife of 12 years
- Cuban has two-year plan for Mavs to contend
- Pacers clutch late, even series against Heat