As executive vice president and general counsel of MSG Networks Inc., Lawrence J. Burian oversees and directs all of the legal affairs for the media company, which includes two award-winning regional sports and entertainment networks, MSG Network and MSG+. Mr. Burian also serves as general counsel for The Madison Square Garden Company (MSG), a sports and entertainment leader with renowned performance venues, entertainment properties, and professional sports teams.
At MSG Networks Inc., Mr. Burian is responsible for advising executive management on key legal and strategic matters and for managing the company’s legal department, including all corporate, commercial, transactional, litigation, regulatory and day-to-day legal matters. Mr. Burian also served as the secretary of MSG Networks Inc. from July 2015 to December 2018.
MSG Network and MSG+ are home to 10 professional sports teams, delivering live games of the New York Knicks; New York Rangers; New York Islanders; New Jersey Devils; Buffalo Sabres; New York Liberty; New York Red Bulls and the Westchester Knicks, as well as coverage of the New York Giants and Buffalo Bills. Each year, MSG and MSG+ collectively telecast approximately 500 live professional games, along with a comprehensive lineup of other sporting events, including college football and basketball, and critically-acclaimed original programming. The gold standard for regional broadcasting, MSG Networks has won 145 New York Emmy Awards over the past nine years.
MSG Networks Inc. was formerly known as The Madison Square Garden Company until a 2015 spin-off that made MSG Networks Inc. a pure play media company and created a new publicly-traded sports and entertainment company that took the name: The Madison Square Garden Company (MSG). In addition to playing an integral role in this transaction, which included raising $1 billion in debt financing at MSG Networks Inc., Mr. Burian also serves as executive vice president and general counsel of MSG.
From 2010 to 2015, Mr. Burian worked for the former The Madison Square Garden Company, during which time he played an integral role in the company’s key initiatives, including the unprecedented, three-year Transformation of the Madison Square Garden arena and the company’s partnerships with Azoff MSG Entertainment, Tribeca Enterprises and Brooklyn Bowl Las Vegas. He also helped drive the company’s purchase and reinvention of the Forum in Inglewood, CA; and its acquisition of the Westchester Knicks. In 2014, Mr. Burian led the sale of the company’s Fuse music television network and, in his first year with the former The Madison Square Garden Company, was a key contributor to its successful spin-off from Cablevision Systems Corporation.
Before joining MSG, Mr. Burian worked for 10 years at Cablevision Systems Corporation, where he played an instrumental role in many of the company’s strategic transactions, including the acquisitions of Sundance Channel, Newsday Media Group and 4Connections, as well as the sale of the Fox Sports New England and Fox Sports Bay Area regional sports networks. From 2005 to 2009, Mr. Burian served as senior vice president, associate general counsel and business affairs at Cablevision, providing legal and strategic counsel to the company’s executive management. He also oversaw the legal staff responsible for various corporate legal matters, including real estate and employee benefits, and supported Cablevision’s PVI Virtual Media Services subsidiary, including as a board member. Previously, Mr. Burian served as vice president, associate general counsel for three years. He joined Cablevision in 2000 as assistant general counsel.
Before joining Cablevision, Mr. Burian was an associate with the law firm of Davis Polk & Wardwell, specializing in mergers and acquisitions, and served in both their New York and London offices. In 1995, he served as a law clerk for then Deputy President (and later President) Aharon Barak of the Supreme Court of Israel in Jerusalem.
Mr. Burian serves on the boards of TAO Group, Boston Calling Events, Tribeca Enterprises and Fuse Media. He also serves on the boards of the Garden of Dreams Foundation, a non-profit organization that works closely with all areas of MSG to help brighten the lives of children facing obstacles; the American Society for Yad Vashem, a non-profit that works in partnership with Yad Vashem in Jerusalem to support global Holocaust remembrance, research and education; and ElderServe Health (“RiverSpring Health”) and the affiliated Hebrew Home at Riverdale, non-profits that provide a wide variety of care and service programs for older adults across the greater New York area.
Mr. Burian holds a doctorate of jurisprudence from Yale Law School and received his Bachelor of Arts in economics from Yeshiva University in New York, where he graduated summa cum laude. Mr. Burian lives in Westchester with his wife and four children.