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• ESPN’s X Games Minneapolis 2019 (Aug. 1-4 U.S. Bank Stadium, ESPN, ESPN2, ABC) has signed Wendy’s as an official sponsor, joining returning sponsors Harley-Davidson, Hotels.com, Monster Energy, Nexcare First Aid Products, Pacifico, SoFi and The Real Cost (FDA). Geico will again serve as the official music stage sponsor.

On-site activation in X Fest is provided by Marvel, Go RVing, US Marines, TINCUP Whiskey, TRIA, FloWater, Star Tribune, Shred Hate, 93X, The CW, Minnesota Timberwolves, Minnesota Lynx, MN United, City Pages, GO MN, iHeart Radio and Minnesota Wild.

• ESPN said that the Wimbledon Gentlemen’s Championship – won by Novak Djokovic over Roger Federer 7-6, 1-6, 7-6, 4-6, 13-12 (7-3) – earned an overnight rating of 3.0 for its more than five hours of coverage up 114% vs. the championship match a year ago for Djokovic vs. Kevin Anderson. The match peaked at its conclusion with a 4.6 rating. At 4:57, it was the longest match of the Gentlemen’s Singles tournament this year and the longest Gentlemen’s Singles final in Wimbledon history. It also was the first men’s singles Major championship to be decided by a tie-break.

• New York Life has signed as a founding partner of the ESPN-owned ACC Network, the national network dedicated to Atlantic Coast Conference sports coverage, scheduled to launch Aug. 22. New York Life remains the official life insurance company of the ACC as well as the exclusive presenting sponsor of the ACC Men’s Basketball Tournament which airs across the ESPN and ACC networks. 

• The Baseball Hall of Fame has signed a deal with VIDSIG, Inc., a San Francisco-based software company that offers live one-on-one video interactions between athletes and fans. The technology will allow Hall of Famers to “hold virtual meet-and-greets or autograph sessions through the use of a computer from the comfort of the athletes' homes.”

• 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 5-7
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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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).

Thursday
Dec142017

WWE Pitting 'Raw' Vs. 'SmackDown' Stars In New Tournament On Facebook Watch

Special to NYSJ Sports-Entertainment Business News Service

December 13, 2017: As the James Bond movie from 1999 implies, The World Is Not Enough for WWE, which has created a 12-episode in-ring series, Mixed Match Challenge, to stream in the U.S. exclusively on Facebook Watch Tuesday nights beginning Jan. 16.

Airing in 20-minute segments, Mixed Match Challenge will feature WWE superstars from Monday Night Raw versus those from SmackDown Live “competing in a single-elimination mixed tag-team tournament to win $100,000 to support the charity of their choice.”

WWE will promote the series across its digital and social footprint, including a new Facebook Watch show Page dedicated to Mixed Match Challenge, plus a promotional spot, Internet, social media and on-air during Monday Night Raw and SmackDown.

Facebook Watch is a new platform for shows on Facebook where “brands can build and engage with a community of fans.”

WWE will use Mixed Match Challenge to not only expand its social media footprint but to interact with fans.

WWE’s main Facebook page has more than 38 million likes and WWE has nearly 500 million likes across all its Facebook Pages.

WWE said that John Cena is the No. 1 most-followed active U.S. athlete on Facebook with more than 45 million likes.

“As we continue to expand our strategic partnership with Facebook, this new series, Mixed Match Challenge, jointly reflects our innovative approach to content distribution and fan engagement,” Michelle Wilson, WWE chief revenue officer and CMO, said in a statement.

“This show will deliver the action and excitement our passionate fan base is accustomed to while offering new production elements and social experiences that only Facebook can provide.”

Among the competitors from Monday Night Raw will be Enzo Amore, Asuka, Baley, Finn Bálor, Sasha Banks, Alexa Bliss, Gold Dust, Alicia Fox, Nia Jax, The Miz and Braun Strowman.

Among the competitors from SmackDown Live will be Carmeila, Charlotte Flair, Lana, Becky Lynch, Naimi, Shinsuke Nakamura, Natalya, Bobby Roode, Rusev, Jimmy Uso and Sami Zayn.

People will be able to vote on Facebook for the final competitor from the Raw roster, as well as which tag-team member of The New Day will be added to the SmackDown Live roster.

Teams are scheduled to be unveiled starting Jan. 4.

According to WWE, each 20-minute episode will “reflect a progressive approach to production, with elements optimized for mobile consumption, experimentation and social interaction, including the ability for fans to engage with Superstars during the show.”

In addition, people will have the opportunity on Facebook to select match-ups, match stipulations and other elements.

“Mixed Match Challenge demonstrates WWE’s flexibility in creating and producing compelling content across platforms in a media landscape that is evolving each day,” Jayar Donlan, WWE evp-digital and social content, said in a statement.

“The social interaction leading up to and during each show will connect WWE Superstars with our massive fan base on Facebook in more ways than ever before.”

WWE said that the unique storylines for Mixed Match Challenge would continue between episodes across WWE’s Facebook pages with short-form videos and social content.

According to Dan Reed, head of global sports partnerships for Facebook, “As a leader in entertainment innovation, WWE is an ideal partner to demonstrate how the live sports viewing experience can be reimagined on Facebook Watch.

Mixed Match Challenge is a new competition produced specifically to take advantage of the reach, interaction and ongoing engagement enabled by our platform," said Reed.

Facebook Watch is available on desktop, mobile and connected TV apps. Fans can follow Mixed Match Challenge to add episodes to their personal Watchlists.

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