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Media value of Golden Knights’ success could be worth millions

The presidential debate staged at the Thomas & Mack Center on Oct. 19, 2016, produced media value estimated at $114 million.

Assigning a value to this miracle season of the Golden Knights is a bit more complicated.

The Las Vegas Convention and Visitors Authority hasn’t developed an estimate or ventured a guess on a dollar value for this season of the Knights, because “it’s really new territory for us,” said Jeremy Handel, senior director of communications for the LVCVA.

But Billy Vassiliadis, partner and CEO of Las Vegas-based R&R Partners, the LVCVA’s advertising consultant, said the special elements of the Knights’ Cinderella story would likely push the media value into the hundreds of millions.

“I don’t think there’s been a news or sports program that hasn’t mentioned something about the Knights. There’s been sports section coverage throughout the country and throughout the world,” Vassiliadis said.

The Stanley Cup playoffs are much different from one-off events like the NBA All-Star Game or the NASCAR events that come every year, and the LVCVA has yet to do any calculations on the 15 games the Knights have played leading up to the finals. Of those 15 games, seven were played in Las Vegas and most of the early round broadcasts were on affiliate networks of NBC. (Wes Rand/Las Vegas Review-Journal)

It’s a tough comparison between the one-off sporting events and a series of games, but the LVCVA has some points of comparison.

The LVCVA calculated the media value of the National Basketball Association All-Star Game at the Thomas & Mack Center on Feb. 18, 2007, at $30.2 million. Handel pointed out that game occurred when social media wasn’t as prevalent as it is today.

The presidential debate staged at the Thomas & Mack Center on Oct. 19, 2016, produced media value estimated at $114 million.

An event that occurs annually in Las Vegas and is sponsored by the LVCVA, Big League Weekend, focuses on team sports, but the scale of the competition is much smaller. The 2017 version of the weekend series between two Major League Baseball teams in spring training at Cashman Field produced media value of $1.4 million. The slow pace of a baseball game enabled broadcasters for the Chicago Cubs to interview LVCVA CEO Rossi Ralenkotter about Las Vegas during the game.

Handel said finding the value of media coverage for the destination is an inexact science some public relations experts attempt to calculate for their clients.

Generally, it’s accomplished by measuring time exposed on live television, or broadcast news stories, or the measurement of column inches of published work in newspapers and magazines, and then calculating how much equivalent paid-for time and space would cost based on a station’s or publication’s rates.

Broadcasts often are punctuated with images of Las Vegas in their introductory segments and beauty shots of the Strip at night produce a positive vibe for being there.

Some experts would go so far as to count the number of times “Las Vegas” is mentioned in a broadcast or printed in a publication

For the Stanley Cup playoffs, the level of interest has multiplied in each round, and the Knights have become an international story.

Handel said the LVCVA has worked with the Knights to direct journalists in town covering games to see other attractions and possibly do stories on them on off days.

Contact Richard N. Velotta at rvelotta@reviewjournal.com or 702-477-3893. Follow @RickVelotta on Twitter.

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