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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

SEARCH

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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).

Saturday
Jan192019

With Foxwoods Casino Deal, Big Papi Goes Where Mantle, Mays Couldn’t

By Barry Janoff

January 1, 2019: This is a clear sign (and signing) of how times have changed in pro sports.

In 1979, baseball Hall of Famer Willie Mays signed a deal to become a spokesman for a casino in Atlantic City.

In 1983, Hall of Famer Mickey Mantle did the same thing.

Each was paid $100,000, mainly to engage with higher-end customers on golf courses and other events but were distanced in the deals from being associated with betting and gambling itself.  

Although both men were retired from active play, they still had strong ties with their former teams — the New York Yankees and San Francisco Giants, respectively — and were viewed as being ambassadors for the game of baseball.

Both were banned from baseball activities by then MLB commissioner Bowie Kuhn for the deals, who stated that casinos were “no place for a baseball hero and Hall of Famer.”

In 1985, the ban was lifted on both men by Peter Ueberroth, who succeeded Kuhn as commissioner.

''The world changes,'' Ueberroth said at a news conference. ''We are going to look for stronger, more clarified guidelines to keep gambling and baseball apart."

Today, nearly a year into the era of pro leagues and teams in the U.S. aligning with casinos, David Ortiz has signed an exclusive partnership with Foxwoods Resort Casino.

Ortiz, who retired from the game in 2016 after a 20-year career that included winning two World Series with the Boston Red Sox, will work as a designated ambassador, including appearing in upcoming marketing campaigns under the brand’s “The Wonder Of It All” umbrella tag line.

Ortiz will also “lend support to other exclusive initiatives on property, including gaming tournaments and other hosted events.”

Terms of the pact were not shared.

The alliance was unveiled during a special public presentation at Foxwoods as part of its 5th Annual Baseball Winter Weekend, an exclusive fan-fest featuring the 2019 Red Sox.

Foxwoods, located in Mashantucket, Conn., opened in 1992, is owned and operated by the Mashantucket Pequot Tribal Nation.

"We are so thrilled to welcome David Ortiz to the Foxwoods team, solidifying a unique partnership between two New England institutions," Rodney Butler, Foxwoods' interim CEO and Mashantucket Pequot Tribal Council chairman, said via the group.

"We are so thrilled to welcome David Ortiz to the Foxwoods team, solidifying a unique partnership between two New England institutions."

"Big Papi knows a thing or two about hitting it big, and we've hit the jackpot in adding him to our lineup to engage with guests and elevate the Foxwoods brand in his new role with the organization."

According to Ortiz, "I've had such great experiences coming to Foxwoods over the years, so this partnership is a really exciting opportunity for me to show why it's the premier resort destination in the Northeast.

“We're going to have a lot of fun together, and I look forward to sharing the ‘Wonder Of It All’ with my fans!" 

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