On the latest Sporticast episode, hosts Scott Soshnick and Eben Novy-Williams discuss some of the biggest sports business stories of the week, including some twists in the sale of the NWSL’s Washington Spirit. In a dramatic turn of events, Spirit co-owner Y. Michele Kang has put herself in prime position to take over 100% of the team at a league-record valuation, but much still remains unknown.
Last year, in the wake of an ugly abuse scandal that rocked the NWSL, the league told the Washington’s three owners (Kang included) that it wanted them to sell. Since then, controlling owner Steve Baldwin has pursued a $25 million deal with prominent sports investor Todd Boehly, while Kang has offered $35 million. Last week, Kang bought out some of the team’s debt holders with the goal of converting their notes into equity, which could give her a majority of the voting shares. In that case, she could likely sell the team to herself.
The hosts also talk about the NFL playoffs, which concluded last night with the NFL’s first Monday night postseason game. Some of the league’s biggest stars (Tom Brady, Aaron Rodgers, Patrick Mahomes) and some of its potential future faces (Josh Allen, Joe Burrow) are still alive, which should bode well for TV ratings and general interest.
Lastly, the hosts discuss the latest in the NCAA’s attempt to rein in new NIL rules, and what to make of Novak Djokovic’s high-profile exit prior to the Australian Open.