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QUICK HITS

• Naismith Memorial Basketball Hall of Fame Finalists Class of 2018: Ray Allen, Maurice Cheeks, Charles “Lefty” Driesell, Hugh Evans, Grant Hill, Jason Kidd, Steve Nash, Rudy Tomjanovich, Chris Webber, Kim Mulkey, Katie Smith, Tina Thompson, Wayland Baptist University. Class of 2018 will be named during the NCAA Men’s Final Four weekend in San Antonio March 31-April 2.

• Serena Williams, who said her first auto purchase was a while Lincoln Navigator SUV she named “Ginger,” has signed to become an official spokesperson for the brand. A social media-based marketing campaign includes videos of Williams talking about and driving the 2018 Navigator, with ongoing videos to follow. “Partnering with a brand like Navigator comes from a genuine place,” she said in the first video. “Let’s just be honest: Serena Williams needs to be in the new Navigator.”

• The Smashing Pumpkins unveil 'Shiny And Oh So Bright' 36-city tour, their first tour in nearly 20 years, with founding members Billy Corgan, Jimmy Chamberlin, James Iha. Produced by Live Nation.

KEEPING SCORE

IMDbPro’s ALL-TIME TOP-GROSSING, LIVE-ACTION SPORTS-THEMED MOVIES*
1. The Blind Side (2009) $255.9M
2. The Karate Kid (2010) $176.6M
3. The Waterboy (1998) $161.5M
4. The Longest Yard (2005) $158.1M
5. Jerry Maguire (1996) $153.9M
6. Talladega Nights: The Ballad of Ricky Bobby (2006) $148.2M
7. Rocky IV (1985) $127.8M
8. Rocky III (1982) $125.1M
9. Seabiscuit (2003) $120.2M
10. Blades of Glory (2007) $118.6M
*These are the Top 10 domestic-grossing, live-action movies with sports as a central theme. These numbers have not been adjusted for inflation.

Data provided by Box Office Mojo

BUY SELL

Most-Watched Winter Olympics in U.S. TV History
1. Lillehammer, 1994* 204 million
2. Vancouver, 2010 190 million
3. Salt Lake City, 2002 187 million
T4. Torino, 2006 184 million
T4. Albertville, 1992 184 million
T4. Nagano, 1998 184 million
* Nancy Kerrigan/Tonya Harding incident

Source NBC Sports

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Marvel: 'Black Panther' Winter Games Ads Below

COLLEGE

CFB Title Games '21-24
No. 1 Colleges Since '92
NCAA: More Health $$$
Cancer Drives Home
NCAA Reballs Madness

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
Apr142011

NHL: Game On The Ice, Business Off The Ice 'Has Never Been Better'

April 14, 2011: With the Stanley Cup playoffs underway, and a potential record-setting TV rights battle looming after that, the NHL said it is on pace for its fifth consecutive year of record total revenue and is projected to bring in more than $2.9 billion by the end of the Stanley Cup playoffs.

The league said the growth was led by "dramatic increases in sponsorship and merchandise sales, landmark corporate investment in its big events and impressive digital growth."

According to the NHL, 2010-11 was a record year for sponsorship sales with gross sales up 33% over last year. Topping the chart was a new seven-year partnership with Molson Coors in Canada and MillerCoors in the U.S. to begin in July – the biggest sponsorship in the league's 93-year history.

The NHL also added Discover Card as the first presenting sponsor of the All-Star Game in a decade, and signed or renewed sponsorship deals with Bridgestone, Canadian Tire, Cisco Systems, McDonald's, Huggies, RIM/Blackberry and Tim Hortons.

Three jewel events also drove on-ice action and fan, consumer and corporate interest: the outdoor Bridgestone Winter Classic, which was played at Pittsburgh's Heinz Field on New Year's Day; the All-Star Game, played in Charlotte, which returned after a year's hiatus due to the 2010 Winter Olympics in Vancouver; and the return of the outdoor Tim Hortons NHL Heritage Classic in Calgary, which was played for the first time since 2003.

Among other highlights cited by the league, the NHL Network increased ad revenue this season by 70% while unveiling multiple enhancements and original programming; NHL merchandise sales had a 15% increase over last year, with Shop.NHL.com experiencing a 9% growth over last year's record; regular season TV viewership increased by 17% over last year; and revenue for the NHL's digital businesses increased by 14%, with NHL.com revenue alone up 28%, setting a new best, according to the NHL.

In social media,the NHL said its Facebook page has 1.46 million fans, a 436% increase over last year, and that NHL followers on Twitter have increased by 54%.

In arenas, the NHL said teams averaged 17,132 fans and played to 93.2% of capacity.  This average is the third largest all-time and represents an increase over last year.

"The game on the ice, which has never been better, has fueled much of our business momentum," John Collins, NHL COO, said in a statement. "There is a buzz around our game. Fans are talking hockey, watching hockey and engaging with the NHL like never before. That in turn has led to the corporate community taking notice and embracing their association with the league in meaningful, creative and impactful ways."

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