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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• Serena Williams has withdrawn from the Miami Open (March 23) due to knee issues.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 15-17
1. Captain Marvel $69.3M
2. Wonder Park $16M
3. Five Feet Apart $13.2M
4. How To Train Your Dragon: Hidden World $9.4M
5. Madea Family Funeral $8M
6. No Manches Frida 2 $3.9M
7. Captive State $3.2M
8. Lego Movie 2 $2.1M
9. Alita: Battle Angel $1.9M
10. Green Book $1.3M
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

Tuesday
Oct162018

Beats, Nike, Marketing Partners Welcome “King” James To L.A. In Royal Fashion 

By Barry Janoff

October 16, 2018: By tradition, every new king is feted with a coronation.

And although LeBron James is entering his 16th season in the NBA, this will be his first with the Lakers, and marketing partners are rolling out the red carpet for his official coming-out party in Los Angeles.

And the Lakers and Los Angles are ready to party like its 2018.

Among the companies planning to fete King James for his first regular season game in Staples Center in a Lakers uniform (Oct. 20 vs. the Houston Rockets): Nike, Foot Locker, Beats by Dre, ESPN (which is carrying the game nationally) and such team partners as Tissot and MGM Resorts International — both of whom are also NBA partners — as well as Wish, which is the Lakers jersey-patch sponsor.

The recently released NBA 2K19 20th Anniversary Edition features James on the cover.

Beats, which in September signed a multi-year deal to become the official headphone, wireless speaker and audio partner of the NBA, WNBA, NBA G League and USA Basketball, will debut its first official NBA-themed commercial on Oct. 18, "The Game Will Never Sound The Same," showing how James is getting ready for his first official game with the Lakers, and how Los Angeles has prepared for him.

The spot plays out to "California Love" from 2Pac featuring Dr. Dre and Roger Troutman.

In addition, Beats will be running the first full "Story Takeover" on NBA Instagram, with content surrounding James’ home opener, featuring LeBron wearing Beats from his locker room arrival through post-game.

Beats has also commissioned a mural of James in downtown Los Angeles, among other activation.

Nike has a new LeBron 16 “King” wine-and-gold shoe hitting the market this week — complete with an image of James sitting on a king’s throne — with Lakers’ purple-and-gold kicks and multi-media marketing soon to follow.

The “Swish” has also adorned a building near Staples Center with a huge James billboard, showing him from the back in his No. 23 Lakers jersey with text, “It’s only a crazy dream until you do it. Just do it.” There are about a dozen such billboards throughout Los Angeles.

Nike and Foot Locker have launched the second year of a pop-up House Of Hoops Courtside, which will travel across the country, with the first stop at LA Live outside Staples Center this week and weekend.

Other James marketing partners planning to support his move to Los Angeles this season include Sprite, Kia, Intel and Upper Deck.

According to online ticket marketplace StubHub, the Lakers are the most in-demand team on their site, with ticket requests to see the team having increased by 427% over last season following the off-season signing of James.

The Lakers' home opener on Oct. 20 is the “most in-demand game of the season,” with average ticket prices going for more than $900 on StubHub.

"The overwhelming demand for Lakers tickets is a testament to the value of star power on a team, with fans excited to see LeBron in his new home," Scott Jablonski, StubHub's general manager of NHL, NFL and NBA, said via the company.

"It's not often that we see this large of a spike in demand for a team that already led sales the season before. There are only a handful of athletes in the world who can make an impact on ticket demand like LeBron can."

The demand for anything LeBron includes sales of his Lakers Nike jersey and Nike basketball shoes.

LeBron’s Lakers jersey has been the top-selling NBA jersey on eBay this off-season, with more than 12,000  sold since he signed with Los Angeles on July 2.

Sales of his LeBron 15 signature shoe on eBay (which is a division of StubHub) doubled that of former teammate Kyrie Irving's Nike Kyrie 4, according to the company.

Off the court, James is making the most of his move to Hollywood via deals through his SpringHill Entertainment with likes of CBS, HBO and Showtime.

In 2017-18, led by the start of an eight-year $1 billion deal with Nike, and the launch of a three-year test program involving jersey partners, NBA sponsorship spending has topped $1 billion for the first time in league history.

The $1.12 billion sponsor spend in 2017-18 is up $259 million over the $861 million sponsor spend in 2016-17, according to research and consulting firm ESP Properties, Chicago.

That sponsor spend figure will go even higher this season, driven in large part by James' “rookie” season with the Lakers, which will be a catalyst not only for national marketing and local effort in Los Angeles, but also in cities in which the team will visit.

Ticket Demand For Lakers, James Up 400% On StubHub

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