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NEWS REAL

• FIFA has postponed plans to expand the World Cup from 32 to 48 teams for the 2022 event in Qatar. The plan is still being considered for the 2026 World Cup, which will be staged in the U.S., Canada and Mexico. According to FIFA, “(There was not enough) time for a detailed assessment of the potential logistical impact.” The World Cup is scheduled for Nov. 21-Dec. 18, 2022.

• The NFL and NFL Players Association have unveiled two joint agreements that are intended to “support further resources directed to address pain management and behavioral health.” Full story here.

• The U.S. Women’s National Team Players Association, LinkedIn CEO Jeff Weiner, and social impact education innovator EVERFI, Inc. have oined the students of Santee Elementary School in San Jose to launch The Compassion Project for the 2019-2020 school year, described as a “national nonprofit dedicated to providing compassion education to elementary school students across the U.S.”

• The U.S. Golf Association has aligned with Marvel Entertainment to create exclusive golf education products to “engage junior golfers on the essential elements to learning the game." Scheduled to launch in June at the 2019 U.S. Open Championship at Pebble Beach, the collaboration features printed and digital comic books with many of Marvel’s super heroes The story follows Tony Stark (Iron Man) and other Avengers as they teach the next generation of Marvel Super Heroes about golf. Limited-edition Marvel-themed golf posters will be distributed (while supplies last) at the Junior Experience at the 2019 U.S. Open.

• Major League Lacrosse has signed a deal with Anheuser-Busch to have its Bud Light brand become the official beer partner for the 2019 MLL All-Star Game, being played in Navy-Marine Corps Memorial Stadium, Annapolis, MD on July 27. The deal includes “prominent signage on the playing field, fan zone activation and various on-site promotions at several sports bars and retail locations in the Greater Annapolis area leading up to the All-Star Game.”

• Stating that “we are continually seeking opportunities to evolve our product offerings,’ Kohl’s has signed an exclusive long-term alliance with Fanatics, a global leader in licensed sports merchandise with the addition of “hundreds of thousands of items.” Full story here.

• Pete Frates and Pat Quinn, co-founders of ALS Ice Bucket Challenge, have launched with The ALS Assn. the 5th anniversary of “Challenge Me” with a “new call to action to reignite the passion and generosity of the millions of people who dumped ice water on their heads in the summer of 2014.” 

POLL POSITION

U.S. Women’s National Team head coach Jill Ellis has named the 23 players who will represent the U.S. in France and seek to defend their FIFA Women’s World Cup crown (July 7-Aug.7).

GOALKEEPERS

Adrianna Franch* (Portland Thorns FC), Ashlyn Harris** (Orlando Pride), Alyssa Naeher** (Chicago Red Stars)
DEFENDERS
Abby Dahlkemper* (NC Courage), Tierna Davidson* (Chicago Red Stars), Crystal Dunn* (NC Courage), Ali Krieger*** (Orlando Pride), Kelley O’Hara*** (Utah Royals FC), Becky Sauerbrunn*** (Utah Royals FC), Emily Sonnett* (Portland Thorns FC)
MIDFIELDERS
Morgan Brian** (Chicago Red Stars), Julie Ertz** (Chicago Red Stars), Lindsey Horan* (Portland Thorns FC), Rose Lavelle* (Washington Spirit), Allie Long* (Reign FC), Samantha Mewis* (NC Courage)
FORWARDS
Tobin Heath*** (Portland Thorns FC), Carli Lloyd**** (Sky Blue FC), Jessica McDonald* (NC Courage), Alex Morgan*** (Orlando Pride), Christen Press** (Utah Royals FC), Mallory Pugh* (Washington Spirit), Megan Rapinoe*** (Reign FC)
* First Women’s World Cup
** Second Women’s World Cup
*** Third Women’s World Cup
**** Fourth Women’s World Cup

KEEPING SCORE

Luka Dončić, Trae Young Head NBA All-Rookie Team
Dallas Mavericks guard-forward Luka Dončić and Atlanta Hawks guard Trae Young have been unanimously selected to the 2018-19 NBA All-Rookie First Team.

Dončić and Young both received NBA All-Rookie First Team votes on all 100 ballots to finish with 200 points each.  They are joined on the NBA All-Rookie First Team by Phoenix Suns center Deandre Ayton (195 points; 95 First Team votes), Memphis Grizzlies forward-center Jaren Jackson Jr. (159 points; 60 First Team votes) and Sacramento Kings forward Marvin Bagley III (156 points; 56 First Team votes).

The 2018-19 NBA All-Rookie Second Team includes LA Clippers guard Shai Gilgeous-Alexander (138 points), Cleveland Cavaliers guard Collin Sexton (132), Clippers guard Landry Shamet (85), New York Knicks center Mitchell Robinson (77) and Hawks guard Kevin Huerter (45).

BUY SELL

Weekend Box Office May 17-19
1. John Wick 3 $57M
2. Avengers: Endgame $29.4M
3. Pokemon Detective Pikachu $24.8M
4. A Dog’s Journey $8M
5. The Hustle $6M
6. The Intruder $4M
7. Long Shot $3.4M
8,. The Sun Is Also A Star $2.6M
9. Poms $2M
10. Uglydolls $1.6M
Source: Box Office Mojo

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BodyArmor Into NCAA
No. 1 Colleges Since '92
Notre Dame Builds Brand
Cancer Drives Home
Men's Hoops Are 'Toxic'

Let us not seek the Republican answer or the Democratic answer, but the right answer. Let us not seek to fix the blame for the past. Let us accept our own responsibility for the future.
Read more at http://www.brainyquote.com/quotes/quotes/j/johnfkenn121400.html#46Ul8rBF4XpB4lo0.99
Let us not seek the Republican answer or the Democratic answer, but the right answer. Let us not seek to fix the blame for the past. Let us accept our own responsibility for the future.
Read more at http://www.brainyquote.com/quotes/quotes/j/johnfkenn121400.html#JZxA5jXY4rCwemgZ.99
Let us not seek the Republican answer or the Democratic answer, but the right answer. Let us not seek to fix the blame for the past. Let us accept our own responsibility for the future.
Read more at http://www.brainyquote.com/quotes/quotes/j/johnfkenn121400.html#JZxA5jXY4rCwemgZ.99
Let us not seek the Republican answer or the Democratic answer, but the right answer. Let us not seek to fix the blame for the past. Let us accept our own responsibility for the future.
Read more at http://www.brainyquote.com/quotes/quotes/j/johnfkenn121400.html#46Ul8rBF4XpB4lo0.99
Channel Chasers

NFL UK 2019
• Oct. 6 Chicago Bears v Oakland Raiders Tottenham Hotspur Stadium
• Oct. 13 Carolina Panthers v Tampa Bay Buccaneers Tottenham Hotspur Stadium
• Oct. 27  Cincinnati Bengals v Los Angeles Rams Wembley Stadium
• Nov. 3 Houston Texans v Jacksonville Jaguars Wembley Stadium

NFL Mexico 2019
• Nov. 18 Kansas City  Chiefs v Los Angeles Chargers Mexico City Estadio Azteca (ESPN Monday Night Football).

Thursday
May252017

Ortiz Was An All-Star, But Can He Act Like Stars Damon, DiCaprio, Affleck, Barrymore?

By Barry Janoff

May 25, 2017: David Ortiz has not played baseball since leaving the Boston Red Sox after the 2016 season, but he certainly has not waked away from the public spotlight.

In a new humorous campaign for Omaze, he is trying his hand at acting, recreating roles played by the likes of Matt Damon, Robin Williams, Ben Afflack, Leonardo DiCaprio, Jimmy Fallon and even Drew Barrymore.

The focus of the effort is the No. 34 retirement ceremony being held in his honor on June 23 in Fenway Park, where he helped to lead the Red Sox to three World Series titles.

Via Omaze, an online site in which people make donations for the opportunity to participate in unique experiences, Ortiz is offering a VIP package that includes accommodations in a four-star Boston hotel, attending a celebrity roast for Ortiz in the House of Blues, watching the retirement ceremony from the owner's seats, going to batting practice, taking selfies with Ortiz and getting a personalized autographed Ortiz Red Sox jersey. (Details here.)

Every donation supports The David Ortiz Children’s Fund and the Red Sox Foundation.

Winner(s) are chosen at random.

Donations range from $10-$5,000. Each comes with a Big Papi item (i.e. autographed book, signed lithograph, baseball bundle) and an increased number of chances to win depending on the size of the donation. (Details here.)

Ortiz is promoting the Omaze opportunity in a spot, appropriately titled "Big Papi: Famous Boston Movie Scenes," in which he gets to show off his acting ability, re-enacting roles from movies that were filmed in Boston.

Among them, Ortiz plays roles from The Town (Ben Affleck), Good Will Hunting (Matt Damon and Robin Williams), Fever Pitch (Jimmy Fallon and Drew Barrymore) and The Departed (Leonardo DiCaprio and Matt Damon).

"I will be honest. I miss it," Ortiz says in the spot. "The lights, the crowd, the big show. Which is why I’m teaming up with Omaze to fly you and a friend to Boston to join me at Fenway Park the day they will retire my jersey. And then I will immediately come out of retirement . . . to become an actor.

"Many people say, But Papi, what about your (Dominican Republic) accent? To them I say, I’m proud of my Boston accent. So enjoy . . . "

A handwritten sign reads: Big Papi Productions Presents . . . A Boston Cinema Tribute starring David Ortiz.

He then re-enacts scenes from the movies.

"Wow," he says rubbing tears form his eyes when the clips end. "Very powerful stuff, man."

Then, smiling, he says, "Just kidding. that was acting, too."

Then he makes the pitch for the trip to Boston. "Go to Omaze.com/papi for your chance to join me, in Boston."

Ortiz has been anything but retired since leaving MLB after 20 seasons with 541 career home runs (plus 17 in the post-season) and 1,768 RBIs and being selected to ten All-Star Games.

He currently stars in a campaign for John Hancock, "Retirement Rookie," in which he is fulfilling requests submitted by people, including taking an aquatic swimming class with senior citizens (see the spot here), treasure hunting and becoming a vendor in Fenway Park.

He also has been involved in numerous endeavors: promoting cigars, beer, chips, salsa, T-shirts and The David Ortiz Children's Fund; going golfing; attending World Series games; and appearing in campaigns including JetBlue, TurboTax, Dunkin’ Donuts, MLBAM, ESPN and Amazon. He just signed with Skechers and this month released his book, Papi: My Story.

Among the other adventures currently being offered at Omaze are getting an all-access pass from Robert Downey Jr. during the filming of the next Avengers movie, going to Ringo Starr’s birthday party and having a day at the beach with Orlando Bloom.

The David Ortiz Children’s Fund helps children in New England and the Dominican Republic who do not have access to the critical pediatric services they need.

The Red Sox Foundation has distributed more than $93 million to support programs serving children and families across New England.

Big Papi Is Bored: What Should He Do Next?

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