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NEWS REAL

• Serena Williams has withdrawn from the Miami Open (March 23) due to knee issues.

• Picking up the mantle of National Women’s Month, and anticipating what next year will be its 70th anniversary, the LPGA has unveiled “Drive On,” a multi-platform refined brand position. According to the LPGA, “Drive On is clearly rooted in golf, but it's a bigger idea. It captures the power and potential in each of us and celebrates the hard work, focus and tenacity that it takes to achieve our goals.” Full story here.

• The NBA said that the Chinese and Croatian National Teams would join all 30 NBA teams to compete at MGM Resorts NBA Summer League 2019 in Las Vegas, marking the first time that the league will feature two international teams, with 83 games over 11 days (July 5-15).

• The 2019 Alliance of American Football Championship, originalluy scheduled for April 27 in Las Vegas, will be played in Ford Center at The Star in Frisco, Texas., which is owned and operated by Jerry Jones and the Dallas Cowboys.

• MLB and the MLB Players’ Assn. have unveiled numerous changes to the game to be installed over the next two seasons that will impact game length, marketing broadcast partners, the All-Star Game and the Home Run Derby. Full story here.

POLL POSITION

Top Ten Most In-Demand MLB Tickets (based on total ticket sales on StubHub thru March 14):
1. New York Yankees
2. Boston Red Sox
3. San Francisco Giants
4. Chicago Cubs
5. St. Louis Cardinals
6. Los Angeles Dodgers
7. Philadelphia Phillies
8. Texas Rangers
9. New York Mets
10. Houston Astros

SOURCE: STUBHUB

KEEPING SCORE

The Most-In-Demand MLB Home Openers
(based on total ticket sales on StubHub thru March 14, all on March 28):

• Arizona Diamondbacks at the Dodgers (average ticket price $229.
• Baltimore Orioles at New York Yankees (average ticket price $202)
• Atlanta Braves at Philadelphia Phillies (average ticket price $84)
• Chicago Cubs at Texas Rangers (average ticket price $254)
• Pittsburgh Pirates at Cincinnati Reds (average ticket price $122)

BUY SELL

Weekend Box Office March 22-24
1. Us $70.2M
2. Captain Marvel $35M
3. Wonder Park $9M
4. Five Feet Apart $8.8M
5. How To Train Your Dragon 3 $6.5M
6. A Madea Family Funeral $4.5M
7. Gloria Bell $1.8M
8. No Manches Frida 2 $1.8M
9. Lego Movie 2 $1.1M
10. Alita: Battle Angel $1M
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
SUPER BOWL LIII

Friday
Oct262018

WWE: Saudi Arabia Event On, Q3 Record Numbers, 1st All-Women PPV In Its History

By Barry Janoff

October 25, 2018: WWE has shared its Q3 financial figures, some of which are “record-setting,” on the eve of Evolution, scheduled for Oct. 28, being billed as the first all-women PPV event in WWE history.

WWE also addressed the serious situation regarding the violent death of journalist Jamal Khashoggi in Saudi Arabia and other issues involving the local government with regard to WWE’s ties to the region, specifically its ten-year deal with the Saudi Arabian government and an upcoming event, “Crown Jewel,” on Nov. 2.

“WWE has operated in the Middle East for nearly 20 years and has developed a sizable and dedicated fan base. Considering the heinous crime committed at the Saudi consulate in Istanbul, the company faced a very difficult decision as it relates to its event scheduled for Nov. 2 in Riyadh.

“Similar to other U.S.-based companies who plan to continue operations in Saudi Arabia, the (WWE) has decided to uphold its contractual obligations to the General Sports Authority and stage the event . . . as scheduled.”

WWE did leave the door open for a change in its decision, but focused on revenue, stating it "is continuing to monitor ongoing developments in the region, and there can be no assurances in this regard. If the event were to be cancelled, there could be material adverse impact on 2018 adjusted OIBDA (operating income before depreciation and amortization) guidance.

"While not anticipated, it is possible that a cancellation could also impact expected results beyond 2018."

Among Q3 2018 highlights, net income was $33.6 million vs. $21.8 million in the prior year quarter; while revenues reached $188.4 million for the third quarter 2018 and a record $657.7 million for the nine months ended Sept. 30, 2018, 12% growth over the prior year period

WWE said that through the first nine months of 2018, “digital engagement increased with video views up 61% to 22.9 billion and hours consumed up 81% to 842 million across digital and social media platforms.”

“During the quarter, we remained keenly focused on deepening engagement with our global fan base by delivering compelling original content across media platforms,” Vince McMahon, WWE chairman and CEO, said via the company.

“We believe that deepening engagement will enable us to take advantage of favorable global industry trends and drive long-term growth.”

Highlights of WWE Evolution are scheduled to include Raw Women’s Champion Ronda Rousey vs. Nikki Bella, SmackDown Women’s Champion Becky Lynch vs. Charlotte Flair (Last Woman Standing Match), Trish Stratus and Lita vs. Alexa Bliss and Mickie James, NXT Women’s Champion Kairi Sane vs. Shayna Baszler and a Women’s Battle Royal Match for a future Women’s Championship opportunity.

The event, in NYCB LIVE, home of the Nassau Veterans Memorial Coliseum, Uniondale, NY, is on PPV via WWE Network (7 PM ET).

As part of WWE Evolution, a Kickoff Show (6 PM ET) will feature Raw announcer Renee Young, SmackDown General Manager Paige and WWE Hall of Famer Beth Phoenix.  

On a pre-show Red Carpet, Charly Caruso and Kayla Braxton “will be looking to catch the grandeur of the event from the outside, with exclusive interviews being conducted by Dasha Fuentes, Cathy Kelley and Sarah Schreiber.”

During WWE Evolution, Renee, The Glamazon and Michael Cole will call the action.

Ring announcers for the event will include Lilian Garcia, JoJo and Kayla Braxton.

WWE History With 62K+ In First Saudi Arabia Event

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