Alibaba (BABA) Executive Vice Chairman, Joe Tsai, has purchased the San Diego based expansion franchise of the National Lacrosse League, set to begin play for the 2018-2019 season, for $5 million. With the expansion, NLL now has teams in 10 cities with the intention of adding a couple of new franchises annually. League attendance surpassed 10,000/game last season (up 12%) and the NLL now has 25,000 subscribers to their digital TV network, launched just 9 months ago. Tsai, a former Yale lacrosse player worth an estimated $11.4 billion, has also expressed interest in purchasing a piece of the Brooklyn Nets.
Howie Long-Short: When guys like Stan Kroenke and Terry Pegula are investing in teams, the league has a future. It is also a lot more affordable than buying an MLS expansion franchise these days ($150 million).
Fan Marino: Did you know that NLL games are played indoors? Unlike collegiate lacrosse that is played on an outdoor field, NLL is played indoors in a rink or “box”. The games are 6 on 6, each teaming having a goalie and 5 “runners”.