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September 22, 2011

Q&A: ‘Anything Good You Can Find In This Country, You Can Find In Brooklyn’ — Brett Yormark

The Big Lead
by Barry Janoff

He's baaaaaack! Here are some "highlights" from Part Two of The Big Lead's interview with Brett Yormark.

Big Lead Sports: What reaction have you gotten to using the name Brooklyn?

Brett Yormark: We have done a lot of research. We know how important the brand of Brooklyn is. My feeling is that anything good you can find in this country, you can find in Brooklyn. We went out and tested the pickles, the knishes, the cheesecake, and the best of the best will be here. The main thing about Brooklyn from a marketing point of view is the diversification. It’s a marketer’s dream to be able to target so many ethnic groups that help to make the borough what it is. Our responsibility, our job is to make sure that everyone is welcomed at the Barclays Center. And that we communicate with each of them in a relevant way.

Tested the pickles? The Nets are the Good Housekeeping Research Institute of the NBA.

BLS: You have college hockey coming to Barclays Center, so it can be converted into a hockey arena. Any interest in having the New York Islanders move in?

BY: Let me just say that we can convert it to a hockey venue and have a great destination for professional hockey. And although it is not legalized in New York State, we can handle MMA when and if it is legalized.

Mixed Martial Arts is a sophisticated sport that draws a nice crowd. Why not?

BLS: Back at the Izod Center, you were able to take unused or under-utilized spaces and turn them into proactive real estate that brought in revenue. But you’ve built Barclays Center from scratch. Will you miss uncovering long-hidden areas that you can turn into assets?

BY: It’s funny you should ask that. Every month, I sit down with my GM and I ask him to walk me though the building [on the blueprints]. Every time I look at it on paper, I see a different space that I hadn’t seen. I’m auditing the building for inventory and opportunities all the time. Our building is about 670,000 square feet, and I think it’s fair to say that we will effectively use every square inch for something.

Wait, didn't he say yesterday that sponsors "don’t want clutter?"

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Related coverage...

Atlantic Yards Report, Brett Yormark interview: no over-commercialization of the arena (?!), project on schedule, Brooklyn brand will be hyped, "professional hockey" viable

The $400 million fantasy

It's not the most incisive interview. The first installment included the discredited claim that the Barclays naming rights agreement was worth $400 million, not $200 million, and, despite my comment appended to that report, the claim continued to appear in the second installment.

Posted by eric at September 22, 2011 11:32 AM