Why Evander Kane’s contract could haunt Sharks GM this summer

first_imgDENVER — Evander Kane’s biggest fan in the second half of the 2018-19 season might be the guy sitting in the general manager’s suite at SAP Center.Doug Wilson will be negotiating potential new contracts for Joe Pavelski and Timo Meier this year and you can bet that the seven-year, $49 million deal Kane signed last summer will be mentioned more than a few times by their agents.Kane’s $7 million annual average salary is now the benchmark for contract talks in Sharks territory.The emphasis on …last_img read more

Cape Town’s soccer angels

first_img1 February 2006Professional women’s football may not have taken off in South Africa, but if the vision and energy of Cape Town Angels FC is anything to go by, it’s only a matter of time before it does.The Cape Town Angels Football Club, born in 2002 out of development work done at the Jogo Bonito School of Excellence, aims to become a feeder for young South African women hoping to break into the world of professional soccer.Since then the club, which starts with teams at the under-nine age group level, has gone from strength to strength.Its potential was recently recognised by South Africa’s top selling soccer magazine, Kickoff, which has joined forces with the Angels to help with fund-raising and brand-building.‘Example to all amateur clubs’“It’s my opinion that this is a club that can be an example to all amateur clubs in South Africa, male and female,” says Kickoff editorial director Richard Maguire.The Angels, who recently made the Hartleyvale Stadium their new home, will be supported by the magazine’s marketing team of Kgomotso Kgatle and former Bafana Bafana striker George Dearnaley.Angels’ coach Lee du Plessis reckons the partnership with Kickoff will lead to new opportunities for the club. “This will improve the credibility of women athletes in the wider sporting community,” she said.The club’s primary fundraising focus is the Umbro International Cup, set to be played in Manchester, England in 2007.It will cost up to R15 000 for each player to attend, and money is in short supply, with many of the players coming from poor homes in the areas of Mitchell’s Plain, Athlone and Khayelitsha.Angel in AmericaRecently, one of the Angels, 15-year-old schoolgirl Lindsey Dolman, travelled to the United States to find out for herself what it takes to become a professional player.The game is big business in the US, which boasts a healthy professional league as well as 20 million registered players under the age of 19.Dolman, who dreams of representing South Africa at the Olympics and the World Cup, wanted to find out what aspects of her game she needs to work on, so she attended the Vermont and New Hampshire Olympic Development Program, which identifies the most talented players around the United States.The programme trains players as young as 12 in a far-sighted effort to produce future Olympians and World Cup stars.A wonderful experienceDolman says it was a wonderful experience. “The facilities are great,” she enthused. “The training wasn’t anything special or new; it was amazing how many girls play the game here.”South Africa, says Dolman, has the talent to star in the world game, but women’s soccer needs greater support: “We are ahead of the curve and we need to keep improving. We need more support for girl’s football.“The programme which we are in [at Cape Town Angels FC] is doing a lot for us, and I only realized it now seeing what else is happening in the USA.“I am grateful to Cape Town Angels believing in me and making this learning experience possible,” Dolman added. “This was my first plane trip and it was long. I hope I can spread the word about women’s football.”So, does Dolman have any other football dreams she wishes to fulfil? “I want to be the perfect footballer,” she says.“I know I am small and a little slow, but so too was Pele and Mia Hamm.” Want to use this article in your publication or on your website?See: Using SAinfo materiallast_img read more

Gartner On Big Data: Everyone’s Doing It, No One Knows Why

first_imgThe gravitational pull of Big Data is now so strong that even people who haven’t a clue as to what it’s all about report that they’re running Big Data projects.Strange, but true.According to a recent Gartner report, 64% of enterprises surveyed indicate that they’re deploying or planning Big Data projects. Yet even more acknowledge that they still don’t know what to do with Big Data. Have the inmates officially taken over the Big Data asylum?Real Adoption Of Big DataAccording to a new Gartner report entitled “Big Data Adoption in 2013 Shows Substance Behind the Hype,” Big Data is moving beyond along the hype cycle with an increasing number of companies launching Big Data projects. Hence, while 27% of enterprises had launched a Big Data project in 2012, with another 31% intending to do so in the next two years, by 2013 30% had deployed Big Data projects, with another 34% expecting to do so in the next two years. That’s a big jump (64% in 2013 compared to 58% in 2012), and it reflects a growing confidence that Big Data can help to enhance the customer experience (54% cited this as their driving motivation), improve process efficiency (42%) and launch new products or business models (39%). Which it can. Maybe.How Do I Turn It On?The problem for many of these same enterprises is that they struggle to understand what Big Data is all about, and how to make it work. When Gartner asked what the biggest Big Data challenges were, the responses suggest that for all these companies plans to move ahead with Big Data projects, they still don’t have a good idea as to what they’re doing, and why: Massive Non-Desk Workforce is an Opportunity fo… 3 Areas of Your Business that Need Tech Now This isn’t to suggest that these enterprises are stupid. Rather, it seems that they’ve allowed the hype around Big Data to both motivate them to start but also confuse them as to where they should go. This reminds me of a great excerpt from Alice’s Adventures in Wonderland:Alice: “Would you tell me, please, which way I ought to go from here?” “That depends a good deal on where you want to get to,” said the Cat. “I don’t much care where –” said Alice. “Then it doesn’t matter which way you go,” said the Cat. “—so long as I get somewhere,” Alice added as an explanation. “Oh, you’re sure to do that,” said the Cat, “if you only walk long enough.”When 56% of respondents struggle to know how to get value from their data yet are either deploying or planning to imminently deploy a Big Data project, we have a serious disconnect. This is one reason I’ve called into question attempts to quantify the Big Data market. There are more questions than answers right now in the Big Data market.Big Data: It’s About IterationAll of which is why I advise companies to start small in their Big Data efforts. Given that all of the essential Big Data technology is open source, there’s no need to start a Big Data project with a Big Check to any vendor.Nor should it start with a classified ad as you search for Big Data talent. Indeed, following Gartner’s advice, it’s far easier to train an existing employee on Big Data technologies than it is to teach them your business.Big Data is all about asking the right questions, which requires business context, and then iterating on your project as you learn which data sources are valuable, and which questions yield real insights. You don’t have to know the end from the beginning, but you should have a clearer view of what you hope to achieve with Big Data than the Gartner seems to indicate most have.Image courtesy of Shutterstock. Matt Asay Tags:#Big Data#Gartner#Open Source Related Posts IT + Project Management: A Love Affair Cognitive Automation is the Immediate Future of…last_img read more