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NEWS REAL

• 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.

• Cavs Legion Gaming Club, the NBA 2K League affiliate of the Cleveland Cavaliers, has unveiled plans for an eSports center in Cleveland’s Battery Park neighborhood. The 2,700 square foot venue is scheduled to open this fall,

• The NFL Network is planning 129 hours of “Inside Training Camp Live” coverage July 22-Aug. 7 Additional coverage will appear across NFL media platforms including NFL.com, NFL Films, NFL app and NFL RedZone.

ESPN also said it would provide comprehensive coverage of the opening week of the 2019 NFL training camps beginning July 22 on daily editions of SportsCenter and NFL Live.

• NBC’s Golf Channel unveiled details for its next Golf Films project, “Tiger Woods: Chasing History,” to premiere July 22  The film will present viewers with a chronological look at the “sights and sounds from each of Woods’ 81 professional victories, from his first at the Las Vegas Invitational in 1996, through the most recent win at the Masters earlier this year.”

• 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
Aug292018

State Farm Expands NBA Presence With Atlanta Hawks Arena Naming Rights Deal

By Barry Janoff

August 29, 2018: State Farm, one of the NBA’s most active partners, has extended its reach in the league with a naming rights deal for the arena that is home to the Atlanta Hawks.

State Farm Arena had been known as Philips Arena since the venue opened in 1999.

Although specific terms of the deal were not disclosed, they were put at 20 years for $175 million by industry analysts.

State Farm Arena will officially open its doors in October following the completion of a $192.5 million-dollar renovation timed to celebrate the team’s 50th year in Atlanta.

The venue is also home to the WNBA's Atlanta Dream.

In addition to signage outside and within the venue, State Farm will support with multi-media marketing and fan activation.

State Farm and the Hawks will also “co-create impactful community initiatives and bolster existing community and social responsibility programs.”

Coca-Cola holds pouring rights in State Farm Arena through its Sprite brand, which is a founding partner of the building.

The address is 1 Philips Drive, which might also get a name change.

Upcoming events include WWE Smackdown, Def Jam 25th Anniversary, Twenty One Pilots, Pink, Drake and Fleetwood Mac.

In 2013, State Farm signed a 30-year deal with the University of Illinois, valued at $60 million, for naming rights to sports venue, State Farm Center.

The Bloomington, Ill.-headquartered insurance firm also has naming rights to the multipurpose State Farm Arena in Hidalgo, Texas.

The State Farm deal is the second naming rights pact signed this summer by NBA venues.

In July, the Milwaukee Bucks signed a naming rights deal with Fiserv for their new arena, Fiserv Forum, which officially opened this month, in a 25-year pact valued at $100 million.

According to the Hawks, the transformed arena will feature the “third-largest center-hung scoreboard in the NBA and most immersive video experience, new sightlines with 360-degree concourses and new seating.”

It will also feature Topgolf Swing Suites, the company’s “first permanent amenity in a major sports arena”; Killer Mike’s SWAG Shop (a four-chair barbershop overlooking the court) and the venue’s signature Hawks Bar, the NBA’s first courtside bar.

State Farm Arena will also be the first NBA venue to offer fan-friendly food pricing with 12 popular food and beverage items priced at $5 or less, according to team executives.

The Hawks are valued at $1.15 billion, according to Forbes.

“This decision symbolizes our pledge to making a difference in communities, building our brand locally and nationally, and ultimately growing State Farm."

Fans will get their first opportunity to enter the new State Farm Arena on Oct. 20 at a “Welcome to the Neighborhood” Open House Party, a free, public event.

State Farm is the NBA’s most active partner, with 68% of properties with a sponsor in the insurance category report a partnership with the insurance firm, according to the 2018 ESP NBA Sponsorship Spend Report.

State Farm, which has been an NBA partner since 2010, has featured numerous NBA stars in its marketing campaign, most recently Chris Paul and James Harden.

State Farm also sponsors the NBA’s 2k eSports league.

“This decision symbolizes our pledge to making a difference in communities, building our brand locally and nationally, and ultimately growing State Farm,” Michael Tipsord, State Farm chairman and CEO, said in a statement.

“The Atlanta Hawks Basketball Club is well known for giving back in this community. Along with our Neighborhood of Good initiative, we’ll have new opportunities to invest in the local community.”

State Farm said that one of its three regional hubs based in Dunwoody, Ga., and that it is “an active member of the local community employing approximately 7,000 individuals with over 6,000 located in metro Atlanta.

“Over the past four years, State Farm staff has volunteered over 2 million hours in their respective communities,” according to the insurance firm.

According to Hawks principal owner Tony Ressler, “Our ownership group considers the Atlanta Hawks Basketball Club a community asset, and we are excited to have found a partner that shares our vision and has committed to working with us to expand on the community engagement and philanthropic initiatives we do that benefit the many communities that make up this great metropolitan area.

“Generations will be positively impacted by the work we do throughout Georgia, and we could not be prouder to have the State Farm name on our new arena.”

PHOTOS COURTESY STATE FARM, ATLANTA HAWKS

Milwaukee Bucks New $500M Arena Has $100M Fiserv Forum Name

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