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QUICK HITS

• Naismith Memorial Basketball Hall of Fame Finalists Class of 2018: Ray Allen, Maurice Cheeks, Charles “Lefty” Driesell, Hugh Evans, Grant Hill, Jason Kidd, Steve Nash, Rudy Tomjanovich, Chris Webber, Kim Mulkey, Katie Smith, Tina Thompson, Wayland Baptist University. Class of 2018 will be named during the NCAA Men’s Final Four weekend in San Antonio March 31-April 2.

• Serena Williams, who said her first auto purchase was a while Lincoln Navigator SUV she named “Ginger,” has signed to become an official spokesperson for the brand. A social media-based marketing campaign includes videos of Williams talking about and driving the 2018 Navigator, with ongoing videos to follow. “Partnering with a brand like Navigator comes from a genuine place,” she said in the first video. “Let’s just be honest: Serena Williams needs to be in the new Navigator.”

• The Smashing Pumpkins unveil 'Shiny And Oh So Bright' 36-city tour, their first tour in nearly 20 years, with founding members Billy Corgan, Jimmy Chamberlin, James Iha. Produced by Live Nation.

KEEPING SCORE

IMDbPro’s ALL-TIME TOP-GROSSING, LIVE-ACTION SPORTS-THEMED MOVIES*
1. The Blind Side (2009) $255.9M
2. The Karate Kid (2010) $176.6M
3. The Waterboy (1998) $161.5M
4. The Longest Yard (2005) $158.1M
5. Jerry Maguire (1996) $153.9M
6. Talladega Nights: The Ballad of Ricky Bobby (2006) $148.2M
7. Rocky IV (1985) $127.8M
8. Rocky III (1982) $125.1M
9. Seabiscuit (2003) $120.2M
10. Blades of Glory (2007) $118.6M
*These are the Top 10 domestic-grossing, live-action movies with sports as a central theme. These numbers have not been adjusted for inflation.

Data provided by Box Office Mojo

BUY SELL

Most-Watched Winter Olympics in U.S. TV History
1. Lillehammer, 1994* 204 million
2. Vancouver, 2010 190 million
3. Salt Lake City, 2002 187 million
T4. Torino, 2006 184 million
T4. Albertville, 1992 184 million
T4. Nagano, 1998 184 million
* Nancy Kerrigan/Tonya Harding incident

Source NBC Sports

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Daytona 500: Goodyear Daytona 500 Ads Below

COLLEGE

CFB Title Games '21-24
No. 1 Colleges Since '92
NCAA: More Health $$$
Cancer Drives Home
NCAA Reballs Madness

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
Monday
Dec032012

Boxing Champ Manny Pacquiao Is Nuts . . . About Endorsing Wonderful Pistachios

By Barry Janoff

December 3, 2012: Manny Pacquiao, who on Dec. 8 will meet Juan Manuel Marquez in a non-title welterweight bout at the MGM Grand in Las Vegas, has gone a bit nuts. Just don't say that to his face.

The 33-year-old Pacquiao, who has won titles in eight different weight classes, has signed a deal with Wonderful Pistachios to endorse the product and appear in a multi-media effort under the brand's "Get Crackin" umbrella campaign.

The effort is anchored by a TV spot that will break tonight on ESPN during the Monday Night Football game between the defending NFL Super Bowl champion New York Giants and the Washington Redskins, led by rookie quarterback Robert Griffin III.

Financial terms of the deal were not disclosed.

Paramount Farms, the parent company of Wonderful Pistachios, also said it has signed an endorsement deal with 20-year-old lightweight boxer Jose Ramirez, a member of the 2012 Olympic team and USA Boxing's all-time record holder with 145 wins, 11 national titles and six consecutive USA gold medals.

Ramirez is scheduled to make his pro boxing debut on the undercard of the Pacquiao-Marquez bout, which is the fourth meeting between the two boxers.

Paramount Farms said it began to sponsor Ramirez while he was training for the Summer Games in London, in part because he was "born and raised in Avenal, Calif., a rural agricultural community in the Central Valley and the same place where Wonderful Pistachios are grown."

The brand's alliance with Pacquiao is more financially motivated via his iconic status as a pro boxer and the fact that "this match-up is anticipated to draw millions of viewers" on pay-per-view.

In the spot, Pacquiao is shown throwing punches at a pistachio-green punching bag. A voiceover explains,  "Manny Pacquiao does it . . .  with a knockout punch."

Pacquiao then hits the bag with all his power and it explodes like a piñata filled with pistachios. "Wonderful pistachios," the voiceover continues. "Get cracking'."

Support includes Internet and social media destinations such as Facebook, YouTube and Twitter.

Pacquiao, who is an elected official in his native Philippines, has also had endorsement deals with Hewlett-Packard, Nike and San Miguel Beer, among others. He made news earlier this year when he was quoted as being opposed to same-sex marriages.

"As athletes, Manny Pacquiao and Jose Ramirez are the epitome of physical health, and as one of the lowest calorie, lowest fat nuts, Wonderful Pistachios are an excellent snack choice for competitors and fans alike," Mark Masten, vp-global sales and marketing for Paramount Farms, said in a statement. "Sponsoring this fight is an opportunity for Wonderful Pistachios to reach the boxing community by having a presence at the main event, and with our consumers watching at home. It's a knockout win for all!"

Pacquiao, whose pro record in 54-4-2, joins a roster of Wonderful Pistachios Get Crackin' endorsers that includes Snoop Lion, characters from The Simpsons and Frankenweenie, "Drill Sergeant" R. Lee Ermey and and The Village People. The campaign is in its fourth year.

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