Monday, August 23, 2010

Funny Federer

Federer's hilarious answer when asked about his relationship with his new coach.
From press conference after semi final victory at Rogers Cup, August 14, 2010.

Murray Wins Rogers Cup

Fans were pulling for Federer.
But Andy Murray and the rain spoils the day.
Niall McGee reports.

Wednesday, August 18, 2010

Roger Federer in Toronto

Which Slam does Roger Federer covet the most? I had the chance to ask him this in Toronto during the Rogers Cup...

Tuesday, August 17, 2010

GEM Tennis on Polansky

Thanks to Parma Samii from GEM Tennis for the shout-out today in What Does #206 In the ATP Rankings Get You?.

Samii sums up Polansky's situation aptly: "Most of us only see the money and the glory that Nadal, Federer, Roddick and other such stars on the ATP World Tour receive."


Monday, August 16, 2010

Peter Polansky at the Rogers Cup

This is a cross-post from my blog posting at BNN

Canadians are getting a chance to see Rafael Nadal, Roger Federer and the rest of the tennis elite in action this week as Toronto hosts the Rogers Cup. The tournament is a Masters Series event, one step below a major like Wimbledon or the U.S. Open (in terms of prize money and ranking points). For Canada's Peter Polansky, a relative unknown as the 207th ranked player in the world, it was an opportunity to break through on his home turf.

Polansky had his moment in the sun, pulling off a major upset by beating Jurgen Melzer (the number-15 ranked player in the world) in the first round on Monday night in front of his hometown fans. But the Toronto-born 22-year-old couldn't raise his game against Romanian Victor Hanescu, losing his second round match in straight sets.

It was a disappointing end to a tournament that started out with high hopes. But don't cry too much for Polansky – his roller coaster week netted him some financial relief: a career-high payday of $16,500.

While that may not seem like much compared to the $443,000 cheque the Rogers Cup champion will eventually cash, for Polansky it's a windfall. He's more accustomed to competing against other lower-ranked players in Challenger events, where tournament winners stand to take home around $6,000.

Despite being Canada's highest-ranked singles tennis player, and a regular on the pro circuit since 2005, Polansky is not a household name. It took a wild card from Tennis Canada for Polansky to even make the main draw in Toronto.

Polansky has made $45,811 so far this year. In the last 5 years he's earned just over $224,000 -- but that's before expenses. In tennis, just showing up to play costs thousands of dollars – and Polansky is barely breaking even after accounting for costs like airfares, hotel rooms and trainer fees.

One thing Polansky doesn't have to worry about paying for is equipment. He has a racquet deal with Spanish company Babolat, and Nike supplies his clothing for match play. But unlike a superstar like Rafael Nadal (who has 41 titles and $33 million in tournament earnings), Nike doesn’t pay Polansky endorsement fees. He says if he can break into the top 100, he'd make considerably more prize money and have a shot at those deals.

At 22, he's still considered a new talent (male tennis players usually compete into their early thirties.) According to Polansky, "companies are always looking for young faces."

For now, he’s just looking to build on what he started at the Rogers Cup … on the court and in his bank account.

Friday, February 1, 2008

Exxon Mobil

Exxon Mobil made $40.6B in profit in 2007. That was a record annual profit for a U.S. company. The number is so astronomically high that it's almost impossible to grasp. Here's another, simpler way of looking at it. Exxon made $1300 a second in 2007. So in the 10 seconds or so it took to read this blog, Exxon made about 13 thousand dollars.

For more on this story, check out my segment on BNN by copying and pasting the following link.

Thursday, January 31, 2008


Bristol-Myers Squibb lost 89 million dollars in the fourth quarter. The biggest contributing factor? Generic competition for its Plavix drug? A big payout on a patent dispute? Nah. The culprit was subprime. Specifically losses on rotten subprime investments. Pretty incredible considering Bristol-Myers is a pharma company. This has to be subprime contagion at its best or its worst depending on your viewpoint.

For more on this story, check out my segment on BNN by copying and pasting the following link.