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• The NBA 2K League today named Tencent Holdings Limited as the league’s first distribution partner in China.

• The English Premier League has signed a multi-year deal naming Anheuser-Busch brand Budweiser as its official category partner. Carling had been the EPL category partner since 2016.

• Sports and live entertainment company AEG has signed a multiyear, multimillion-dollar renewal agreement with Toshiba America Business Solutions, extending their “comprehensive partnership across several of AEG’s flagship assets,” including Toshiba remaining a founding partner of Staples Center and the official digital signage and display provider of L.A. Live.

• As part of the NFL 100th season celebration, the NFL has teamed up with league partner EA to give one lucky fan the chance to become an EA Sports Madden NFL ratings adjustor for the day as well as be digitized to appear in the Madden NFL game. Details here.

• The NBA’s Golden State Warriors have signed a long-term deal naming  Fanatics, a  global leader for licensed sports merchandise, as the exclusive operator of all Warriors Shop locations throughout the Bay Area. Full story here.

• NBA All-Star James Harden has joined the ownership group of the Houston Dynamo. According to the MLS club, the 2018 NBA MVP with the Houston Rockets becomes the fifth member of an ownership group led by Gabriel Brener, which also includes boxing icon Oscar De La Hoya, Ben Guill and Jake Silverstein.

In addition to the Dynamo, the group also owns the NWSL's Houston Dash and BBVA Stadium, the home venue for both clubs.

“I’m very excited about the opportunity to join the ownership group of the Houston Dynamo and Houston Dash and proud to be a part of a club with tremendous history and a great future,” Harden said via the team.

• Spend a "Day in the Life Of Blake Griffin." 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

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 12-14
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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COLLEGE

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).

Wednesday
Apr152015

'Money' Mayweather-'Pac-Man' Pacquiao Fight Building In Money, Hype, Histrionics

By Barry Janoff

April 15, 2015: With the arguably defined 'Fight of the Century" barely two weeks away, both Floyd "Money" Mayweather and Manny "Pac-Man" Pacquiao have stepped up their efforts to convince the public that after their welterweight bout one will declare that he is unarguably the "greatest pound-for-pound fighter on the planet.

Even if the fight itself — scheduled for May 2 in the MGM Grand in Las Vegas — is anticlimactic, both men are doing all they can to see that pre-fight marketing, hype and economics reach new heights.

Numbers coming in from sports, boxing and media analysts certainly put this bout on a new plateau.

Among the figures: An estimated $180 million in winnings for Mayweather, $120 million for Pacquiao; between 3.5-4 million PPV buys at $99 a pop via co-promoter HBO and Showtime; upward of $75 million in live gate receipts, $35 million in foreign rights; and millions more from brands that lined to be associated with the event, such as Tecate, which paid $5.6 million, according to industry analysts, to be the "official" beer.

Both Mayweather and Pacquiao held workouts this week in their respective training camps that were open to the media and streamed live via YouTube.  

Mayweather opened the doors for the media in his Mayweather Boxing Club in Las Vegas, Tuesday night, and after a two hour delay came out in gear declaring TBE (The Best Ever) and then spent hours sparring in the ring, hitting the speed and heavy bags and going through a series of exercises.

Pacquiao got his turn Wednesday evening when the media hits the Wild Card Boxing Club in Hollywood, Calif.

"He's a future hall of famer," Mayweather said during a pre-workout media conference. "I am a future hall of famer and we are meeting at the pinnacle of our careers. It is going to be a very exciting fight.

"I am in tip-top shape," Mayweather said. "If the fight was today I would be at my best."

Each man is trying to gain an advantage in their respective workouts. Pacquiao wails away at a speed bag with Mayweather's face on it, Mayweather's speed bag is located in front of a poster for the fight showing tape across Pacquiao's eyes and mouth.

Attitude has been seen not only in person at their lone joint press conference in Los Angeles but in pre-fight marketing.

A commercial filmed with both fighters in Los Angeles in March, "It's Time," sees them standing toe-to-toe, each attempting to out-stare the other. A second TV spot, "At Last," has Pacquiao declaring about Mayweather, "It's been a long-time coming. Now he has no where to go."

Pacquiao rallies his fellow countrymen and women from the Philippines behind him in a new video the he directed, "Lalaban Ako Para Sa Filipino" ("I Will Fight for the Filipino"), in which he sings and is seen helping the survivors of last year's typhoon, interspersed with shots of him training for the fight.

Showtime Sports, which has a deal with Mayweather, will give viewers backstage access to the fight from the perspective of "Money" with Inside Mayweather vs. Pacquiao, a four-part documentary series, with Episode 1 premiering on April 18.

HBO, which has a deal with Pacquiao, has a dedicated Web site chronicling the life, times and bouts of "Pac-Man." HBO will air on April 18 a special looking at the fight from Pacquiao's perspective.

More hype and activation will come as the time to the fight draws near.

"There are two certainties about the Mayweather-Pacquiao fight," said Gustavo Guerra, brand director for Tecate. "It will shatter records and everyone will have an opinion about who will win."

PHOTOS COURTESY MAYWEATHER-PACQUIAO HBO-SHOWTIME SPORTS

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