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NBA puts ball in Gazdag’s court

League to focus on digital, mobile and online

Attila Gazdag wants LeBron James’ slam dunks to be viewed not only on cable and broadcast TV but on computers and cell phones all over the world.

The National Basketball Assn. has hired Gazdag as senior VP of global media distribution, giving him responsibility for 45,000 hours of NBA TV programming. Gazdag joins the NBA from the Walt Disney Co., where he was managing director of its Internet group, Europe, Middle East and Africa. He has moved from London to New York for the NBA job.

Digital, online and mobile are the three areas where Gazdag will put his focus, he said, adding that he’s eager to sell live games, condensed games, highlight shows and player profiles to any distribution mechanism that can make use of them. “I’m platform agnostic,” he said.

Taking advantage of the record number of foreign players on NBA teams, Gazdag said that one of his initiatives will be to create different packages of games for separate countries. “Germany would be more interested in games of the Dallas Mavericks because Dirk Nowitski is a star player,” Gazdag said. “Similarly, the Toronto Raptors might be easier to sell to Italy because Andrea Bargnani, an Italian native, is a key to that team.”

Before his six-year stint at Disney, Gazdag was an executive with Universal Studios, E! Entertainment TV and Cinergi.

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