Friday Factoid: Sloan = Athletics?

Our title may be a bit misleading, but did you know that some of the biggest names in sports have met annually since 2007 for an event at the MIT Sloan School of Management that Bill Simmons, ESPN columnist, has described as “dorkapalooza”? At the annual student-run Sports Analytics conference, participants discuss the increasing role of analytics in the sports industry, and students have ample opportunity to network with the sports elite. Calling his fellow panelists “a slew of statistical rockstars,” Simmons joined sports luminaries Adam Silver, deputy commissioner and COO of the NBA; Carla Christofferson, co-owner of the Los Angeles Sparks; Mark Cuban, owner of the Dallas Mavericks and co-founder and chairman of HDNet; Brian Burke, president and general manager of the Toronto Maple Leafs; Jonathan Kraft, president and COO of The Kraft Group; Jeff Van Gundy, ESPN analyst and a former NBA coach; and Ray Allen, all-star guard for the Boston Celtics for the event in 2009. The sold-out 2011 conference brought back Simmons as a featured speaker, and he was joined by Justin Tuck of the New York Giants; Michael Wilbon, commentator with ESPN; Apolo Anton Ohno, eight-time Olympic medalist in speed skating; Malcolm Gladwell, author and staff writer with The New Yorker; and Mark Cuban, owner of the Dallas Mavericks.

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