Behind the Scenes of the Minnesota Timberwolves Media
Story by Barrett Herrig
Many people love to watch professional sports but very few actually think about the business behind it.
Alex King, public relations director for the Minnesota Lynx, shed some light on what goes on behind the scenes in the sports industry.
Behind the Scenes In Professional Basketball
Operations in the public relations department for the Lynx vary from day to day.
Alex said, the average day involves:
- Formulating pitches for local media
- Formulating pitches for national media
- Setting up interviews for the players with the media
Basically, a big part of his job is to make sure they are very visible in the local media, both on radio, television and in the newspapers.
Challenges With Public Relations
The most challenging part about King’s job is balancing expectations between departments and groups of people. He said that he is often times put in a position between what the front office/sales side would like and what the basketball operations/players/coaches can actually do.
“There are plenty of instances where someone will come to me with a great idea involving a number of players or coaches, but unfortunately for a variety of reasons, it can’t work,” he said.
I then asked him what the most challenging issue he has faced in his career was. He replied that the toughest challenge was learning the routines and preferences for all of the players and coaches on the team.
Perks Of the Job
Setting the challenges aside, I asked him what he enjoys most about his job. He said that he loves the traveling aspects.
“It gives me a chance to see parts of the country that I wasn’t familiar with, and it really helps build my relationship with the players and coaches,” he said.
He emphasized the importance of getting to know everybody’s routines and habits because it comes to be incredibly useful when pitching stories to media members or trying to schedule interviews/photo-shoots.
The sports field is what I dream to be involved in someday, so I asked Alex how he got to where he is today.
He said hard work, perseverance, and a little luck. He had family connections and was able to get an internship with a sports entertainment group in Salt Lake City, working with the Utah Jazz, Salt Lake Bees and the Miller Motorsports Park.
He worked thankless hours to prove his capabilities. He then applied for a part-time internship with the Minnesota Timberwolves PR department, which turned into the full time job that he has today.
Advice For Job Seekers
King’s advice for somebody going into the field of media, or any career for that matter, is to never say “no.”
He also said that whenever given an opportunity; prove that you can go above and beyond, no matter how simple the task.
Make yourself known and stand out from the crowd.
“The old adage “it’s not what you know, it’s who you know” is partially correct, but really it’s not about who you know, it’s about who knows you,” he said.
“If the right people know you, and know that you can do the job and do it well, then you’re set.”
Taylor Adrian, a Lynx/Timberwolves sales employee, agrees with King.
Working hard and staying ambitious is how he got where he is today.
“The sports world is a popular field that everybody wants to be involved with, hundreds of people applied for my position, Adrian said.”
“Hard work landed me this job, never give up.”
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