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• Serena Williams has withdrawn from the Miami Open (March 23) due to knee issues.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

Sunday
Dec092018

Can NFL Super Bowl LIII In Atlanta Outmuscle 2018 MLS Cup In Atlanta?

By Barry Janoff

December 9, 2018: The NFL Super Bowl is arguably regarded as the biggest event in sports and one of the biggest events in the history of each respective host stadium.

Super Bowl LIII, scheduled for Feb. 3, 2019 in Atlanta’s Mercedes-Benz Stadium, looks to keep that momentum going.

Not so fast, says Major League Soccer.

The 2018 MLS Cup, played in Mercedes-Benz Stadium on Saturday (Dec. 8), was such a huge event that the NFL has to raise it’s already high bar to top what happened.

The second-year and host Atlanta United defeated the Portland Timbers, 2-0, before a crowd of 73,019.

That not only set a MLS post-season and MLS Cup mark, but is now the league’s all-time top attendance figure.

In addition, the game “delivered the best metered-market rating (1.2) for a MLS Cup since 1998 and was up 77% vs. the 2017 MLS Cup Game,” according to Fox Sports, which aired the championship nationwide.

In his State of the League address Friday (Dec. 7), MLS commissioner Don Garber sang the praises of the club, majority owned by Arthur Blank, also majority owner of the NFL Atlanta Falcons.

“The club is one of great stories in history of our league," said Garber. "It is embraced by people from all walks of life. Games are the place to be.

“In my opinion, I think it's one of the great stories in professional sports. Their success shows that there really is no limit to what MLS can be.”

For the NFL, this is some wiggle room to top the 73,000-plus at the upcoming Super Bowl.

Mercedes-Benz Stadium, which opened in 2017 and is also home to the Falcons, hosted a record 77,430 for the College Football National Championship this past January.

The all-time attendance record for a soccer game in the U.S. involving a U.S.-based soccer club is 93,226 in 2015, when the MLS Los Angeles Galaxy hosted Barcelona in a friendly in the Rose Bowl.

The overall all-time U.S. mark was in 2014 when 109,318 saw Manchester United play Real Madrid in Michigan Stadium.

The all-time Super Bowl attendance mark was set at Super Bowl XLV (2011) when 103,219 were in At&T Stadium (then known as Cowboys Stadium) to see the Green Bay Packers defeat the Pittsburgh Steelers, 31-25.

MLS even attracted stars for its title game.

Among those in attendance at the MLS Cup: Evander Holyfield, former Atlanta Braves pitcher Tom Glavin, former NFL star Chad Ochocinco, former NBA player Steve Smith and rap stars Big Boi and Waka Flocka.

The MLS Cup attendance figure in Atlanta was not a fluke.

This past season, Atlanta United became the first MLS club to draw more than one million fans. The team averaged a league record 53,002 attendance per match, with eight games topping 70,000.

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