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• Puma, which is rebooting its hoops division with the signing of potential top NBA draft picks Deandre Jordan and Michael Bagley III to shoe deals, said it has named producer/musician/businessman Jay-Z as president of basketball operations. The company said it has been working with Jay-Z run Roc Nation “for quite some time.” In addition, Hall of Famer Walt "Clyde" Frazier, a Puma partner for its first signature shoe in the 1970’s and long-time endorser, has signed a lifetime contract with the shoe brand.

• Panini America has signed an exclusive autograph trading card memorabilia agreement with All-American point guard Trae Young, a projected Top Ten pick in this week's 2018 NBA Draft. Young led the nation in both scoring (27.4 ppg) and assists (8.8 apg) during a his freshman season with the University of Oklahoma.

• Xyience said it would be an official sponsor and the official energy drink for the 2018 International Champions Cup presented by Heineken, a premier  occer tournament featuring top clubs and players from Europe. The ICC runs from July 20- Aug. 7 and includes 17 matches played across 14 U.S. cities. (ESPN, ESPN2, ESPN Deportes and SiriusXM.) Sponsors also  include Heineken, Ally, Hertz, MasterCard, Gatorade, Konami and Vivid Seats.

KEEPING SCORE

Top-Selling MLB Jerseys (Jan.-May 2018)

1. Jose Altuve Houston Astros
2. Aaron Judge New York Yankees
3. Clayton Kershaw Los Angeles Dodgers
4. Giancarlo Stanton New York Yankees
5. George Springer Houston Astros
6. Anthony Rizzo Chicago Cubs
7. Kris Bryant Chicago Cubs
8. Shohei Otani Los Angeles Angels
9. Carlos Corea Hoston Astros
10. Mookie Betts Boston Red Sox
11. Mike Trout Los Angeles Angels
12. Cody Bellinger Los Angeles Dodgers
13. Buster Posey San Francisco Giants
14. Javier Baez Chicago Cubs

SOURCE: MLBShop.com

BUY SELL

WEEKEND BOX OFFICE (June 15-17)

1. Incredibles 2 - Disney - $180 M ($231.5M worldwide)
2. Ocean's 8 - Warner Bros. - $19.6M
3. Tag - Warner Bros. - $14.6M
4. Solo: A Star Wars Story - Disney - $9.1M
5. Deadpool 2 - 20th Century Fox - $8.8M
6. Hereditary - A24 - $7M
7. Superfly - Sony - $6.3M
8. Avengers: Infinity War - Disney - $5.3M
9. Adrift - STX Entertainment - $2.1M
10. Book Club - Paramount - $1.9M
11. A Wrinkle In Time - Disney - $1.8M
12. Gotti - Vertical Entertainment - $1.7M

NOTE: Jurassic World: Fallen Kingdom - Universal $173.6M international (opens in U.S. June 22)

SOURCE: COMSCORE.com

SEARCH

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Topps Living Set: Jackie World Cup Ads Below

COLLEGE

Men's Hoops Are 'Toxic'
No. 1 Colleges Since '92
Notre Dame Builds Brand
Cancer Drives Home
CFB Title Games '21-24

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
Thursday
Apr072016

Nike Leads Marketers, Athletes To Celebrate Kobe Bryant As NBA Career Concludes

By Barry Janoff

April 7, 2016: As his days on the court wind down, Kobe Bryant's presence in marketing is ramping up.

Among his brand ambassador duties, Bryant has been talking up sports drink BodyArmor (where he also is an investor) and did an event with American Express as part of the brand's "Teammate to the Fans" campaign.

AEG, which owns and operates Staples Center, home to Bryant's Los Angeles Lakers, has unveiled in conjunction with LakersStore.com the Kobe Bryant "24 Collection," with more than 45 exclusive apparel items to commemorate his career.

The specially created high-end items feature New Era headwear, adidas jerseys and T-shirts, jackets by JH Design Jacket and a pin line with Aminco. Included is a 24 karat gold-fitted black snakeskin cap, limited edition of eight, selling for $38,248.08; and a gold leather snakeskin jacket, limed edition of 24, going for $5,824.

These are in addition to merchandise that Bryant is offering on his own Web site.

Many of the 36 different jerseys that Bryant has worn either with the Lakers, as an NBA all-star or as a member of the U.S. Men's National Basketball Team are available either via the NBA Store or the Lakers online shop.

Now, Nike has taken Bryant's marketing a step farther, declaring April 13 as "Mamba Day," a nod to his last appearance in a Lakers uniform as well as his "Black Mamba" nickname.

According to the sports gear and footwear brand, "Nike-sponsored athletes worldwide will celebrate the player many love to hate by wearing black and gold shoes, a metaphoric nod to the Bryant’s golden career fading to black on April 13."

A multi-platform push includes a spot, "Mamba that features such athletes as track and field star Sanya Richards-Ross, NFL quarterback Russell Wilson, WNBA star Natalie Achonwa, NFL wide receiver Odell Beckham Jr., pro skateboarder Eric Koston and  NBA all-stars Kyrie Irving, Paul George and Kevin Durant.
 
True to the premise, "Love him or hate him, the Black Mamba’s prolific career has fueled both joy and anger," athletes in the Nike spot express a their opinions on playing against or watching Bryant.

"He pissed me off a lot," says Durant.

"He was ready to attack at all times," offers Irving.

According to Beckham Jr., "At the end of the day it's me versus you"

And says Wilson, "He makes you fear him before you even step on the court."

Among the other estimated 200 Nike athletes who will wear the black-and-gold Mamba shoes are golfer Rory McIlroy, MLB star Mike Trout and Carli Lloyd of the U.S. Women's National Soccer Team.

Numerous other festivities are being planned for April 13, when Los Angeles hosts the Utah Jazz in Bryant’s final pro game.

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