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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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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).

Tuesday
May062014

Mudcats, IronPigs, Flying Squirrels: MiLB Teams Top $55M In Merchandise Sales

Special to NYSportsJournalism.com

May 6, 2014: The Albuquerque Isotopes, Carolina Mudcats, Columbus Clippers, Corpus Christi Hooks, Pensacola Blue Wahoos, Sacramento River Cats and Scranton/Wilkes-Barre RailRiders may not be top of mind with baseball fans and consumers, but they are among the top 25 Minor League Baseball teams in licensed merchandise sales for 2013.

MiLB unveiled its list of top 25 teams in licensed merchandise sales, which, combined with the other 135 teams under the MiLB auspices, topped $55.4 million in retail sales for 2013. MiLB did not break out slaes figures per team or list them in order by sales.

The total is the second highest sales figure behind 1994 for the licensing program since its inception in 1992 and a 2.6% rise from the previous year, according to MiLB.

The total licensed merchandise sales were calculated for Jan. 1 - Dec. 31, 2013, and are based on the 160 teams in the domestic-based leagues that charge admission to their games.

Online sales increased 27% from the previous year, according to data compiled by Baseball Internet Rights Company. That has continued into 2014, where online sales saw a 28% growth through the end of April vs. the same time period in the previous year.

In 2013, the clubs that charge admission attracted more than 41.2 million fans to their ballparks.

The news comes on the heels of MiLB signing a pact to air 15 Thursday night games nationally this season on the CBS Sports Network.

"The Top 25 list reflects the popularity of Minor League Baseball team names and logos not only among all baseball fans, but with casual observers and celebrities as well," Sandie Hebert, director of licensing for MiLB, said in a statement. "The popularity of our logos is due in part to the fact that our marks are fresh, inventive and most of all, fun. Each team has its own unique identity."

"The Top 25 list reflects the popularity of MiLB team names and logos not only among all baseball fans, but also with casual observers and celebrities."

The MiLB online store platform currently hosts 143 live sites which includes both team and league sites. Of the top 25 teams, 24 have online stores using the MiLB platform.

According to Herbert, "With fans now having the ability to shop for merchandise in both team stores and online, we continue to expand Minor League Baseball's reach through branding efforts. Minor League Baseball merchandise bridges the gap between on-field authenticity and fashion."

MiLB Top 25 Teams In Licensed Merchandise Sales 2013  (listed alphabetically):
Albuquerque Isotopes, Carolina Mudcats, Columbus Clippers, Corpus Christi Hooks, Durham Bulls, Fort Wayne TinCaps, Hillsboro Hops, Indianapolis Indians, Lake Elsinore Storm, Lakewood BlueClaws, Lansing Lugnuts, Lehigh Valley IronPigs, Midland RockHounds, Myrtle Beach Pelicans, Pensacola Blue Wahoos, Portland Sea Dogs, Reading Fightin Phils, Reno Aces, Richmond Flying Squirrels, Round Rock Express, Sacramento River Cats, Scranton/Wilkes-Barre RailRiders, Toledo Mud Hens, Trenton Thunder and Wisconsin Timber Rattlers.

Q&A: First MiLB CMO Comes Out Swinging

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