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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.

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Most Popular NBA Jerseys (Oct.-Dec. 2017)
1. Stephen Curry, Golden State Warriors
2. LeBron James, Cleveland Cavaliers
3. Kevin Durant, Golden State Warriors
4. Giannis Antetokounmpo, Milwaukee Bucks
5. Kristaps Porzingis, New York Knicks
6. Joel Embiid, Philadelphia 76ers
7. Russell Westbrook, Oklahoma City Thunder
8. Ben Simmons, Philadelphia 76ers
9. Kawhi Leonard, San Antonio Spurs
10. James Harden, Houston Rockets
11. Lonzo Ball, Los Angeles Lakers
12. Kyrie Irving, Boston Celtics
13. Klay Thompson, Golden State Warriors
14. Damian Lillard, Portland Trail Blazers
15. Jimmy Butler, Minnesota Timberwolves

Most Popular Team Merchandise
1. Golden State Warriors
2. Cleveland Cavaliers
3. Philadelphia 76ers
4. Los Angeles Lakers
5. New York Knicks
6. Milwaukee Bucks
7. Boston Celtics
8. San Antonio Spurs
9. Chicago Bulls
10. Oklahoma City Thunder
Source: NBAStore.com

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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2018 NBA All-Star Game

East Starters: Giannis Antetokounmpo, DeMar DeRozan, Kyrie Irving, LeBron James, Joel Embiid
West Starters: Kevin Durant, Stephen Curry, Anthony Davis, James Harden, DeMarcus Cousins
The All-Star teams will still feature 12 players from each conference, but the captains — James and Curry — will select the team rosters without regard for conference affiliation.

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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
Saturday
Jan282017

Gronkowski, Durant And Friends Bringing Sports-Themed 'Shark Tank' To go90

By Barry Janoff

Originally Published in MediaPost

January 27, 2017: Injured tight end Rob Gronkowski may not be playing in Super Bowl LI with the New England Patriots, but that doesn’t mean he is sitting idly by on the sidelines.

Gronkowski stars in a new series that launched this week (Jan. 25) on Verizon’s go90 digital platform, MVP — which in this case stands for "Most Valuable Partner" — a theme similar to Shark Tank, in which entrepreneurs pitch their products or concepts and seek endorsements (and some financial backing) from top-name athletes.

In addition to Gronk, the panel includes Kevin Durant (Golden State Warriors), Antonio Brown (Pittsburgh Steelers), NFL Hall of Famer Marshall Faulk, Rudy Gay (Sacramento Kings), Triple Crown winning jockey Victor Espinoza, Olympic softball gold medalist Jennie Finch and former NFL star Terrell Owens.

A financial expert is also part of the panel.

MVP will consist of 18 10-12 minute episodes breaking each Wednesday, each featuring people who display their product and share what they seek from an athlete endorser. The panel then gets to question the presenter, ultimately striking a deal or sending the guest home empty-handed.

According to the promo spot, "These entrepreneurs might have new, game-changing ideas, but they need to land a brand ambassador to really take off. And with the right pitch and the right offer, these pros might just become their most valuable partner."

Initial ideas presented to Gronkowski and friends include the Man Crate (filled with "man-cave-type items" that are shipped to someone’s home), Just Food for Dogs (with the tag line "The Future is Fresh"), Leave-Up Lites (which can be adapted for holidays from Christmas to St. Patrick’s Day) and Buiced ("spelled like juiced, pronounced like boost"), a "gluten-free, GMO-free, caffeine-free, dairy-free, nut-free- soy-free" energy drink.

Shica Little, who has a Ph.D. from Clemson in organizational leadership, developed Incredi-Whip, which she described to the panel as an all-organic product that can be used as a coffee creamer or desert topping (or just squirted into your mouth, as Durant does). Spoiler alert: The product, which launched in October and is in the refrigerated aisle of such retailers as Walmart and Kroger, will be endorsed by a member of the panel.

MVP will air for free on go90.com or the go90 app (available for iOS and Android).

Verizon’s go90 streaming service launched in October 2015 and has aired such shows as The Runner from producers Ben Affleck and Matt Damon, The Big Papi Network with David Ortiz and Gronkowski’s free-form Uninterrupted.

It offers a free subscription to NBA League Pass via Verizon’s official alliance with the league, as well as other sports and live concerts. It also features content from the likes of Vice, Buzzfeed Comedy and Awesomeness TV.

Next month, go90 will debut QB1: Beyond The Lights from Peter Berg (director of Friday Night Lights), a ten-part series that will follow three high school quarterbacks in their senior year as they prepare for college football.

The platform is currently undergoing internal changes, including laying off some 150 employees.

Verizon is in the process of acquiring Yahoo as part of a $4.8 billion deal.

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