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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

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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).

Monday
Aug142017

“Tsunami,” “No Panic,” Don’t You Know,” “Dirty Craig” Ready For Players Weekend

By Barry Janoff

August 14, 2017: MLB has always been a breeding ground for great nicknames: "Joltin' Joe" DiMaggio, Reggie "Mr. October" Jackson, Franke "The Fordham Flash" Frisch, Jay "Dizzy" Dean, Leo "The Lip" Durocher, Ozzie "The Wizard Of Oz" Smith and George Herman Ruth, who came with a plethora of nicknames (including "Babe", "The Bambino", "Sultan of Swat" and "Colossus of Clout").

This month, MLB picks up the modern-day gauntlet with Players Weekend, during which players will wear jerseys from Majestic with their hand-picked nicknames on the back.

Game-worn jerseys will be put up for auction at a dedicated MLB site, with 100% of proceeds going to the MLB-MLBPA Youth Development Foundation.

Some of the players were already known by the nicknames they selected, others delved into their past for nicknames of their childhood, others selected nicknames they felt were apropos for this special event and some chose nicknames to honor a parent or relative.

Some harken back to the short-lived and infamous days of the XFL, when players were allowed to wear nicknamed jerseys during games, led by Ron Smart’s "He Hate Me."

Among the MLB Players Weekend jerseys: “Hollywood” (Archie Bradley, Arizona Diamondbacks), “RedTurn2” (Justin Turner, Los Angeles Dodgers), “No Panic” (Roberto Osuna, Toronto Blue Jays), “Don’t You Know” (Robinson Cano, Seattle Mariners), “Tsunami” (Carlos Martinez, St. Louis Cardinals) and “Dirty Craig” (Craig Kimbrel, Boston Red Sox).

Seeing-Hwan On, a native of Korea who is a relief pitcher for the Cardinals, has his nickname written in Korean. Conversely, Eric Thames of the Milwaukee Brewers, who played three seasons for the NC Dinos in the South Korea Baseball Organization, is going with the nickname in Korean, "Sang Nam Ja,” the translated equivalent of “Real Man.”

"I think it's cool," A.J. Pollock of the Arizona Diamondbacks, aka “Pollo,” told MLB.com. ”Some guys will have nicknames that are way out there, and some guys have nicknames that people aren't really aware of, so I think it's going to be fun."

Added teammate Paul “Goldy” Goldschmidt, "I think it will be fun as a player to see what other guys across the league, what their nicknames are, because you don't know everyone's nickname, so that will be interesting,"

Other equipment is also being specially designed for the three-day event (Aug. 25-27), including hats from New Era and Stance socks.

According to MLB and MLB Players Assn., the "customized gear and colorful, non-traditional uniforms (were) inspired by youth league uniforms (and) conceived as a way to allow players and young fans to connect through the sharing of their interests and cultures while bringing attention to causes they support."

Players also have the opportunity to write on a patch on their right sleeves the name of a person or organization that was instrumental to their development. The patch features a new logo that "shows a progression of five players increasing in size to illustrate a player's path from youth leagues to Major League Baseball," according to MLB.

The special features of the Players Weekend games will be worn first by the Pittsburgh Pirates and Cardinals during the MLB Little League Classic in Williamsport, Pa., on Aug. 20 as part of the 2017 Little League World Series.

In addition to putting their nicknames on the back of their jerseys, players were able to write in on a patch on their right sleeves "the name of a person or organization that was instrumental to their development."

"Players are increasingly interested in finding unique ways to connect with their fans by allowing them to see more of their personalities and interests," Tony Clark, MPBPA executive director said in a statement. “The collective desire to express their diverse interests and backgrounds is what motivated players to advocate for the creation of Players Weekend.

Several players have been named as Players Weekend Ambassadors to help promote the event: Yonder Alonso (Seattle Mariners), Javier Baez (Chicago Cubs), Jose Bautista (Toronto Blue Jays), Nelson Cruz (Seattle), Ender Inciarte (Atlanta Braves), Francisco Lindor (Cleveland Indians), Manny Machado (Baltimore) Orioles, Anthony Rizzo (Cubs), CC Sabathia (New York Yankees), Christian Yelich (Miami Marlins) and Chris B. Young (Boston Red Sox).

"Players are increasingly interested in finding unique ways to connect with their fans by allowing them to see more of their personalities and interests."

Sabathia, Bo Schultz (Toronto) and Josh Thole (Diamondbacks) were among the players involved in developing the concept in conjunction with MLB and MLBPA.

In addition to Majestic jerseys, New Era hats and Stance socks, players are allowed to customize their spikes, batting gloves, wristbands, compression sleeves, catcher's masks and bats with color and imagery.

Game-worn jerseys will be auctioned at MLB.com/auctions, with 100% of proceeds going to the MLB-MLBPA Youth Development Foundation.

The Foundation was launched in July 2015 with an initial commitment of $30 million focused on “improving the caliber, effectiveness and availability of amateur baseball and softball programs across the United States and Canada.”

People can now shop for replicas of the Players Weekend jerseys at MLBShop.com ($199.99).

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