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NEWS REAL

• 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, Hotels.com, 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.”

POLL POSITION

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).

KEEPING SCORE

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)

SOURCE: MiLB

BUY SELL

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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No. 1 Colleges Since '92
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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
May072009

MLB Could Take Endorsement Hit Due To Manny, A-Rod

By Barry Janoff

Executive Editor, NYSportsJournalism.com

Manny Ramirez FatHeadMay 7, 2009: The news that Manny Ramirez of the Los Angeles Dodgers has been suspended for 50 games for violating MLB's performance-enhancing drug testing program, coupled with the recent news linking Alex Rodriguez to banned substances, and added to the ongoing news associating Barry Bonds, Roger Clemens and others to such substances, has marketers rethinking endorsement deals using baseball players.

"A lot of companies have stayed away from [Ramirez] already because of his personality. This will make him a far reach for anyone looking for a baseball player for an endorsement," said Robert Tuchman, president and founder of TSE Sports and Entertainment, New York, and author of the new book, 100 Sporting Events You Must See Live. "Unfortunately MLB hasn’t hit bottom yet with all these new revelations. They need to clear this stuff up and move on past this era to come out of this. They will soon enough. They have a lot of young stars in the pipeline."

Ramirez, does not have far to fall in the world of marketing as he earns only about $4-5 million in endorsements. Ramirez has a deal with RecoveryX, an energy drink from Changing Times Vitamins, Scottsdale, AZ; and FatHead has a Ramirez product. But beyond a 2008 campaign in which he was among a group of ball players to do a Father's Day effort for Macy's, his presence among national marketers has been limited.

The Dodgers have to dismantle at least until Ramirez's scheduled return on July 3 their "Mannywood" section at Dodger Stadium, unveiled during the team's current record-setting home stand. Already taken down soon after his suspension was a section on the Dodgers' Web site for selling seats in Mannywood, located in Sections 51 an d 53, closest to where Ramirez plays left field, for which fans had been able to purchase two seats for $99 and receive a limited-edition "Mannywood" T-shirt. On May 5, the Dodgers, in celebration of Cinco de Mayo, even issued a limited edition "Yo estuve en Mannywood" ("I was in Mannywood") T-shirt to fans who purchased tickets in Mannywood. Harder to remove will be numerous billboards throughout Los Angles also supporting Mannywood. And M. Ramirez remains an option on the team's Web site among Dodgers being touted for nomination to the 2009 All-Star Game.

Ramirez was banned for what he called a medication that was prescribed to him by a doctor for a "personal health issue" and not steroids. But the image of a top-level, and very high profile player, being suspended by MLB for 50 games only adds to the public perception of baseball. According to recent column by Kurt Streeter of The Los Angeles Times (which broke the Ramirez suspension story), "L.A. loves Kobe [Bryant] because of his skill, swagger and cold-blooded-killer 'tude. But Ramirez - softer, goofier, wearing the befuddled look of a man who has just lost his keys while still an assassin with a bat - is already right up there with Kobe." Bryant was able to come back from sexual assault allegations in 2003 (a case that was settled out of court), which saw his endorsement earnings drop from $65 million to under $20 million, but which have since returned to about the $35 million level. Likewise, swimmer Michael Phelps took a serious endorsement hit after the release of a photo showing him holding a bong.

Ramierez, working with his agent, Scott Boras (who also handles A-Rod), was quick to admit responsibility, to apologize to the Los Angeles Dodgers and fans and to also distance himself from the "steroid" cloud hanging over some of the game's top players. "Unfortunately, the medication was banned under our drug policy,” Ramirez said in a statement. “Under the policy that mistake is now my responsibility. I have been advised not to say anything more for now. I do want to say one other thing: I’ve taken and passed about 15 drug tests over the past five seasons.”

If history holds true, Ramirez' popularity among fans and consumers - aka those people who voices directly influence how marketers act and react - will fall. After being association with illegal substances, both Rodriguez and Phelps saw significant drops in trust, appeal, endorsement, and aspiration awareness numbers in the Davie Brown Index, which tracks the ability of athletes and celebrities "to influence brand affinity and consumer purchase intent."  Back to Home Page