• ESPN’s X Games Minneapolis 2019 (Aug. 1-4 U.S. Bank Stadium, ESPN, ESPN2, ABC) has signed Wendy’s as an official sponsor, joining returning sponsors Harley-Davidson,, Monster Energy, Nexcare First Aid Products, Pacifico, SoFi and The Real Cost (FDA). Geico will again serve as the official music stage sponsor.

On-site activation in X Fest is provided by Marvel, Go RVing, US Marines, TINCUP Whiskey, TRIA, FloWater, Star Tribune, Shred Hate, 93X, The CW, Minnesota Timberwolves, Minnesota Lynx, MN United, City Pages, GO MN, iHeart Radio and Minnesota Wild.

• ESPN said that the Wimbledon Gentlemen’s Championship – won by Novak Djokovic over Roger Federer 7-6, 1-6, 7-6, 4-6, 13-12 (7-3) – earned an overnight rating of 3.0 for its more than five hours of coverage up 114% vs. the championship match a year ago for Djokovic vs. Kevin Anderson. The match peaked at its conclusion with a 4.6 rating. At 4:57, it was the longest match of the Gentlemen’s Singles tournament this year and the longest Gentlemen’s Singles final in Wimbledon history. It also was the first men’s singles Major championship to be decided by a tie-break.

• New York Life has signed as a founding partner of the ESPN-owned ACC Network, the national network dedicated to Atlantic Coast Conference sports coverage, scheduled to launch Aug. 22. New York Life remains the official life insurance company of the ACC as well as the exclusive presenting sponsor of the ACC Men’s Basketball Tournament which airs across the ESPN and ACC networks. 

• The Baseball Hall of Fame has signed a deal with VIDSIG, Inc., a San Francisco-based software company that offers live one-on-one video interactions between athletes and fans. The technology will allow Hall of Famers to “hold virtual meet-and-greets or autograph sessions through the use of a computer from the comfort of the athletes' homes.”

• 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.”


AT&T WNBA All-Star 2019 Starter Pool

  • Liz Cambage, Aces
  • Elena Delle Donne, Mystics
  • Chelsea Gray, Sparks
  • Brittney Griner, Mercury
  • Natasha Howard, Storm
  • Jonquel Jones, Sun
  • Jewell Loyd, Storm
  • Kayla McBride, Aces
  • Kia Nurse, Liberty
  • A‘ja Wilson, Aces

AT&T WNBA All-Star 2019, featuring Team Delle Donne vs. Team Wilson, is scheduled for July 27 in the Mandalay Bay Events Center, Las Vegas (ABC 3:30 PM ET).


The Top 25 MiLB Teams With Best-Selling Merchandise (alphabetically, with MLB affiliate):

  • Albuquerque Isotopes (Rockies)
  • Charleston RiverDogs (Yankees)
  • Charlotte Knights (White Sox)
  • Columbia Fireflies (Mets)
  • Columbus Clippers (Indians)
  • Corpus Christi Hooks (Astros)
  • Durham Bulls (Rays)
  • El Paso Chihuahuas (Padres)
  • Fort Wayne TinCaps (Padres)
  • Gwinnett Stripers (Braves)
  • Hartford Yard Goats (Rockies)
  • Indianapolis Indians (Pirates)
  • Jacksonville Jumbo Shrimp (Marlins)
  • Lehigh Valley IronPigs (Phillies)
  • Nashville Sounds (Rangers)
  • Pawtucket Red Sox (Red Sox)
  • Portland Sea Dogs (Red Sox)
  • Richmond Flying Squirrels (Giants)
  • Rochester Red Wings (Twins)
  • Sacramento River Cats (Giants)
  • Salt Lake Bees (Angels)
  • San Antonio Missions (Brewers)
  • Tacoma Rainiers (Mariners)
  • Toledo Mud Hens (Tigers)
  • Trenton Thunder (Yankees)



Weekend Box Office July 5-7
1. Spider-Man:Far From Home $45.3M
2. Toy Story 4 $20.7M
3. Crawl $12M
4. Stuber $8M
5. Yesterday $6.8M
6. Aladdin $5.9M
7. Annabelle Comes Home $5.6M
8. Midsommar $3.4M
9. Secret Life of Pets 2 $3.1M
10. MIB International $2.2M
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.
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.
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.
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.
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).


John McEnroe: The NY Knicks Are Toxic, Have Hit Bottom . . . Now Move Forward

By Barry Janoff

June 27, 2017: In anticipation of his role as analyst and commentator during ESPN’s exclusive coverage of The Championships, Wimbledon (July 3-16), John McEnroe held court during a media conference today talking about the Grand Slam event (during which ESPN will have 140 hours of coverage on TV and 1,500 on ESPN3 and streaming live on the ESPN App).

He spoke about his recent comments on Serena Williams (responding to an earlier statement that "On the men’s circuit she would rank around No. 700" he offered "Obviously if it wasn't for Serena, American tennis would even be in a lot deeper trouble. She, in my opinion, is the greatest female player ever") and match-fixing ("The cheating in the game is worse than ever").

But McEnroe also weighed in — quite heavily — about a special passion, the New York Knicks, of which the Queens, NY-raised 58-year-old, seven-time Grand Slam winner has been a high-profile fan for decades.

On Tuesday (June 26), McEnroe appeared on The Dan Patrick Show and sang (while playing guitar) a parody about the Knicks, covering Green Day’s "Good Riddance (Time Of Your Life)."

"Another turning point, a fork stuck in the road. What do we do with Melo (Carmelo Anthony) now that Phil doesn’t want to stay home? I still believe, or at least I can hope, that the Knicks don’t keep being the butt of everyone’s joke. Something unpredictable but in the end I hope he’s right. But Phil . . . don’t trade (Kristaps) Porzingas tonight.” (See the full segment here.)

During the ESPN media conference the next day, his tone was a bit more serious.

"As of yesterday (June 26) it was my understanding that Phil was going to finish out his contract. Try to turn things around," said McEnroe. "Although, obviously, that wasn’t going too well.

"It seemed," he emphasized, "as if it had gotten so toxic it just wasn’t going to be able to work out."

From McEnroe’s perspective, "The things that he did try — trades, free agents — hadn’t worked out. The way he handled the situation with Melo (saying, among other things, that he would be better of with another team), I don’t think anyone, including himself, would have thought that was the right approach. Even if it was better for the team and for Melo to leave, it wasn’t handled well."

McEnroe, although somewhat acquiescing to the outcome, admitted that Jackson and the Knicks deciding today to "mutually" part ways was, for him, unexpected.

"I was surprised that this happened,” said McEnroe. "I don’t hang around with NBA players but now and then I am around a couple and with people who are involved with the NBA. It seemed like there was no question that (players) were less-inclined to make a move toward the Knicks at the moment. Which I always found amazing."

McEnroe, who was in his tweens when the Knicks won their last NBA titles (1969-70, 1972-73) did see reasoning behind the timing of the move, but reacted like a true New Yorker at heart.

"I am biased, but I think that New York is the greatest city in the world. And I’m thinking, We can’t get guys to play for the New York Knicks?! In Madison Square Garden? That just seems beyond belief," said McEnroe.

“If it had something to do with Phil Jackson, even though he was a legendary Knick (he was a member of both Knicks title teams) and was one of the greatest, if not among one of the best couple of head coaches (ever) in the NBA (11 titles with the Chicago Bulls and Los Angeles Lakers), if it’s better moving forward, then I guess it’s better now," he said.

"I’m thinking, We can’t get guys to play for the New York Knicks?! In Madison Square Garden? That just seems beyond belief."

Like other fans of the team, McEnroe said he anticipated better times for the Knicks in 2016-17, but they finished with a poorer won-lost record (31-51) than the previous season (32-50), when they actually showed marked improvement over 2014-15 (17-65).

"I would have sworn to you before the season started last year I believed they could win 50 games," he said. "Having (signed) Joakim Noah, whose father, (former tennis star) Yannick, is a long-time buddy of mine, a former defensive player of the year who had some skills. I know, knowing him, that he dreamed of coming to New York, a kid who spent a lot of his life growing up in the city.

"Picking up Derrick Rose (in a trade from Chicago) at the time seemed to be a sensible risk, a one-year deal. Kristaps Porzingas (in his second season) was coming along. And you had some other players.

"I know some of it was bad luck. Unfortunately, the knock on Melo seemed to be and continued to be true — that even though he is such a great offensive player and a great guy, he wasn’t making the guys around him better. Or better enough, the way some of these other guys do, with LeBron (James) as the most obvious example.

"But that’s easier said than done. Maybe Melo would have been better off allowing Porzingas to get more of the spotlight and taking some of the pressure off of him. So if it ends up that he (Anthony) does stay — which who knows what the hell is going to happen now — but if he does, it would be better for Melo if he allowed Porzingas to flourish. It would actually help him (Anthony).

"That fact that he feels he is being over-shadowed in some ways is not accurate. It’s going to take Porzingas even in a best-case scenario a few more years to get to the level we hope he gets," said McEnroe.

Is this new chapter a foreshadow of better things to come for the Knicks, he was asked.

"Sometimes you have to hit rock bottom, or what appears to be rock bottom, to move forward," said McEnroe.

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