Gentry Julian and Joshua A. Price

The National Basketball Association (NBA) changed the official game ball from leather to synthetic to start the 2006–07 season. The NBA argued that the synthetic ball was superior to the leather ball and would be beneficial to player performance. The Nation-al Basketball Association Players Association (NBAPA) argued that performance de-creased as a result of the ball change and filed an unfair practice labor grievance against the league. As a result, the league reverted back to using a leather ball in the middle of the season (after January 1). We test the claims of the NBA and the NBPA...Read more

Russell Lacey and Pamela Kennett-Hensel

Corporate social responsibility (CSR) activities have the ability to impact the image and reputation of professional sports franchises, and ultimately, their relationships with the respective fan bases. The National Basketball Association (NBA), in particular, utilizes CSR as part of its marketing and public relations strategy. Based on field survey data collected with the assistance of an NBA team in the Southeastern United States over three consecutive seasons, this study expands our understanding of CSR by exploring how fans’ expectations and perceptions of CSR initiatives impact the...Read more

David J. Berri
Michael A. Leeds
and Peter von Allmen

The assumption that workers are paid their marginal product underlies the theory of competitive labor markets and is the basis for comparison with non-competitive markets. Many firms, however, generate revenue in fixed lump-sums that are unrelated to the efforts of current workers. For example, many professional sports receive substantial income from broadcast rights, which are negotiated at wide intervals. We develop a theory of compensation in the presence of “fixed revenue” and test our theory using data from the National Basketball Association. Our results indicate that TV revenue...Read more

David J. Berri
Michael A. Leeds
Eva Marikova Leeds
Michael Mondello

The role of the manager in promoting production is a little-understood phenomenon. In particular, it is difficult to separate managers’ contributions from the abilities of the workers they supervise. Firms may therefore mistakenly attribute the contributions of the workers to the managers who happen to oversee them. With its plethora of performance data, the National Basketball Association (NBA) provides a natural setting to measure the contribution of a head coach to the performance of his team. We find that some highly regarded coaches deserve their accolades, but several coaches owe...Read more

David J. Berri
Stacey L. Brook
Martin B. Schmidt

Professional sports are characterized by an abundance of information on worker productivity and severe consequences for failure. Consequently, one would expect information to be processed efficiently in this industry. Recent research indicates, though, that decision makers in professional sports do not behave consistently with the dictates of instrumental rationality. This study of decision making in the National Basketball Association (NBA) begins with a literature review that indicates players can score a major payday by simply focusing on scoring. Beyond this review, we offer an...Read more