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deal w O via the NFL Players Inc. licensing- unit. "Since partnering in 2013, and have helped nearly 1,000 players connect with hundreds of brands to share campaigns, reaching more than 1 billion fans worldwide."

• The has named Shenzhen, as the host city for 2019-2028, a deal that includes the building of a 12K-seat venue, and doubling the prize money to $14M for the Top 8 singles players and Top 8 doubles teams.

• Overwatch League said that its first week of competition drew more than 10 million viewers via Twitch, MLG, and Chinese streaming partners ZhanQi TV, NetEase CC and Panda TV. Opening day had an average audience per minute of 408,000.

• Coca-Cola, International Speedway Corp. and Nascar have signed an extension to their partnerships under which Coca-Cola, would "continue its deep-rooted history in the sport by engaging racing fans across Nascar’s three national series and 12 ISC-operated race tracks" and events including the Coca-Cola 600 and the Coca-Cola 400. Coca-Cola-sponsored drivers include Austin Dillon, Denny Hamlin, Kyle Larson, Joey Logano, Ryan Newman, Daniel Suarez and Darrell “Bubba” Wallace Jr. Coca-Cola said it "has been involved with stock car racing for 50 years," and became an official partner with Nascar in 1998.

• NBC Olympics will debut Olympic Ice Presented by Toyota, a live, daily figure skating show airing nightly (7 PM ET) on NBCSN beginning Feb. 10 and continuing through Feb. 24. Live Olympic figure skating competition will follow the show in primetime. NBCOlympics.com and the NBC Sports app will present a digital-exclusive version of Olympic Ice Presented by Toyota immediately following prime-time coverage beginning Feb. 8.

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Top NBA All-Star Game Votes (To Date)
Eastern Conference
1.  Giannis Antetokounmpo (MIL) 863,416
2.  LeBron James (CLE) 856,080
3.  Kyrie Irving (BOS) 802,834
4.  Joel Embiid (PHI) 433,161
5. Kristaps Porzingis (NYK) 359,459
6.  DeMar DeRozan (TOR) 259,368
7.  Victor Oladipo (IND) 251,886
8.  Kevin Love (CLE) 221,969
9.  Ben Simmons (PHI) 210,085
10. John Wall (WAS) 175,990
Western Conference
1. Kevin Durant (GSW) 767,402
2. Stephen Curry (GSW) 735,115
3. James Harden (HOU) 602,040
4. Russell Westbrook (OKC) 438,469
5. Klay Thompson (GSW) 359,442
6. DeMarcus Cousins (NOP) 356,340
7. Draymond Green (GSW) 325,612
8. Manu Ginobili (SAS) 231,460
9. Kawhi Leonard (SAS) 212,650
10. Carmelo Anthony (OKC) 194,239

The 67th NBA All-Star Game will take place on Sunday, Feb. 18 at Staples Center in Los Angeles. TNT will televise (8 PM ET)

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Top-Selling NFL Jerseys By Team 2017 At Dick’s Sporting Goods
1. Dallas Cowboys
2. New England Patriots
3. Pittsburgh Steelers
4. Philadelphia Eagles
5. Denver Broncos
6. Carolina Panthers
7. New York Giants
8. Seattle Seahawks
9. Atlanta Falcons
10. Cincinnati Bengals
11. Houston Texans
12. Minnesota Vikings
13. Detroit Lions
14. Chicago Bears
15. Green Bay Packers
16. Oakland Raiders
17. Kansas City Chiefs
18. Baltimore Ravens
19. Washington Redskins
20. Arizona Cardinals

SOURCE: DICK'S SPORTING GOODS

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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
Wednesday
Apr162014

Aaron Rodgers Welcomes Hollywood 'Neighbors' For State Farm, ESPN

By Barry Janoff

April 15, 2014: Aaron Rodgers, a veteran of State Farm commercials who, by the way, spends time playing quarterback for the Green Bay Packers, makes another appearance for the insurance company and brings with him actors Seth Rogen and Zac Efron.

The trio manage to promote State Farm, ESPN's SportsCenter, Nike (both Rodgers and Efron are wearing items with the "swoosh" logo) and, topping the list here, Universal's Neighbors, the upcoming film starring Rogen and Efron as the antithesis of the insurance company's company's motto, "Like a good neighbor State Farm is there."

Rogen and Efron are warring neighbors in the movie that pits an Animal House-type fraternity against newcomers who are in for a rocky ride.

The spot takes place in a weight room, where Rogen and Efron find Rodgers in exercise mode. Efron is well acquainted with Rodgers' exploits; Rogen not so much.

"Hey, it's you — you're the State Farm guy," Rogen says to Rodgers. "That's Aaron Rodgers, man," corrects Efron. "He's one of the best quarterbacks ever. Don't you watch SportsCenter?"

Rogen is still clueless. "You went from being a guy in commercials to being a quarterback!?" Rogen says to Rodgers. "That's incredible. that can't happen very often."

Efron is not amused. "That's not what happened." Then, to Rodgers, "This is totally embarrassing."

Rogen then tries to show he was only kidding. "Yeah. Anyway, I totally know who you are. Your brother is Eli, right?"

Efron and Rodgers are not buying in.

"Okay, I'm sorry," says Efron. "It's not like he knows everything about my career."

"Actually," Rodgers responds, "I'm a big fan: Superbad. Knocked Up. Dawson's Creek Season 6, you played Bob. You got Neighbors coming out!. I'm pumped man."

"Thank you," replies a humbled Rogen. "Well, break a leg out there." To which Rodgers replies, "We don't say that in sports." To which Efron replies to Rogen, "Stop embarrassing me in front of Aaron Rodgers." To which Rogen replies, "Who's Aaron Rodgers?"

The spot ends with a voiceover promo for Neighbors, scheduled to hit theaters May 9. Then, Rodgers tosses a weight ball to Rogen and hits him in the head. "Now you know my name," says Rodgers as he and Efron high-five.

The spot then links to a "restricted" trailer for the movie. (See the full spot here.)

This is not Rodgers first encounter with Hollywood types. He has starred in State Farm spots since 2011, touting the company's "Discount Double Check" policy, most recently in a series of commercials opposite actors Robert Smigel and George Wendt as the ultimate fans of Da Bears.

"In Aaron Rodgers, we have a guy who is well-known and has won a Super Bowl, but is understated and accurately represents the brand," Tim Van Hoof, assistant vice president of marketing for Bloomington, Ill.-based State Farm, recently told NYSportsJournalism. "If you look at his commercials, he is never the jokester. He is usually a bit of the self-deprecating guy in humorous situations . . .

"We have been talking with our key broadcast partners, ESPN, TNT," said van Hoof. "It is a brave new world when it comes to collaboration, partnership, co-creation, content and distribution. Some of these folks really get it. They are in the content, creation and distribution business, doing the same things I am trying to do: create compelling content to advance our brand's goals, and then distribute it."

Q&A: How State Farm 'Cracked" The Sports Marketing Code With NFL, NBA

Did Aaron Rodgers Make It Cool To Care About Discount Double Check?

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