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• The Professional Baseball Agreement between MLB and minor league teams expires at the end of the 2020 season. But if a new MLB proposal were to become reality, more than three dozen cities with affiliated minor league teams will lose those teams a year from now and thousands of minor league players will be out of work as well. Full story here.

• "We said there's no chance that's happening. There’s no chance we’ll even discipline him." — NBA commissioner Adam Silver regarding China’s request that the league fire Houston Rockets GM Daryl Morey

• "The losses have already been substantial. Our games are not back on the air in China as we speak, and we'll see what happens next. I don't know where we go from here. The financial consequences have been and may continue to be fairly dramatic." — NBA commissioner Adam Silver at the Time 100 Summit on Thursday regarding the league’s on-going situation with China.

• Showtime Sports will launch on Oct. 21 a weekly podcast, All The Smoke with Matt Barnes and Stephen Jackson, in which the two NBA veterans (now retired) and NBA champs (Golden State Warriors and San Antonio Spurs, respectively), will “deliver an authentic, unfiltered perspective on the most polarizing topics in and around the game of basketball.”  It will air Thursdays on the Showtime Basketball YouTube Channel.  

• Bluberi Gaming has signed a deal with WWE to develop a series of licensed slot games featuring WWE Superstars and Legends. Among those to be featured include John Cena, Triple H, Becky Lynch, Roman Reigns and Ronda Rousey. The first WWE series of slot games is scheduled to hit casinos October 2020.

• HarperCollins Publishers said it has acquired world rights to Back, the first memoir authored by Tiger Woods. According to Woods, “This book is my definitive story. It’s in my words and expresses my thoughts.” A publication date was not given.

• Halloween this year is Oct. 31, and retailers, marketers and consumers are ready for another season of trick-or-treat. Total spend on Halloween 2019 is expected to reach $8.8 billion according to the National Retail Federation, Washington, DC. Full story here. 

POLL POSITION

Rock & Roll Hall of Fame 2020 Nominees

• Pat Benatar
• Dave Matthews Band
• Depeche Mode
• Doobie Brothers
• Whitney Houston
• Judas Priest
• Kraftwerk
• MC5
• Motorhead
• Nine Inch Nails
• Notorious B.I.G.
• Rufus feat. Chaka Khan
• Todd Rundgren
• Soundgarden
• T. Rex
• Thin Lizzy

VOTE HERE

KEEPING SCORE

Most Popular NBA Player Jerseys (based on eBay sales October 2018-October 2019)
1. LeBron James Los Angeles Lakers
2. Stephen Curry Golden State Warriors
3. Kyrie Irving Brooklyn Nets
4. Giannis Antetokounmpo Milwaukee Bucks
5. Kevin Durant Brooklyn Nets
6. Dwyane Wade Miami Heat (retired)
7. Kawhi Leonard Los Angeles Clippers
8. Zion Williamson New Orleans Pelicans
9. Carmelo Anthony (most recently with Houston Rockets)
10. Russell Westbrook Houston Rockets

Most Popular Player Merchandise (based on eBay sales October 2018-October 2019)
1. LeBron James Los Angeles Lakers
2. Stephen Curry Golden State Warriors
3. Kevin Durant Brooklyn Nets
4. Kyrie Irving Brooklyn Nets
5. Giannis Antetokounmpo Milwaukee Bucks
6. Paul George Los Angeles Clippers
7. James Harden Houston Rockets
8. Dwyane Wade Miami Heat (retired)
9. Kawhi Leonard Los Angeles Clippers
10. Russell Westbrook Houston Rockets
SOURCE: STUBHUB.COM

BUY SELL

Weekend Box Office Oct. 11-13
1. Joker $55M
2. Addams Family $30.3M
3. Gemini Man $20.5M
4. Abominable $6.2M
5. Downton Abbey $4.9M
6. Hustlers $3.9M
7. Judy $3.3M
8. It 2 $3.2M
9. Jexi $3.1M
10. Ad Astra $1.9M
BoxOfficeMojo.com

SEARCH

NYSportsJournalism.com + Topic Of Requested Search

Showtime: All The Smoke See More Ads Below

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).

Wednesday
Sep262012

While Rehabbing Knee, Tennis Star Rafael Nadal Takes On A New Racket 

By Barry Janoff

September 26, 2012: Rafael Nadal pulled out of the 2012 Summer Olympics in London and the U.S. Open in New York due to chronic knee problems. But the former No. 1 ranked tennis player in the world has a new job: Working the reception desk at the upscale Vall D'Or golf country club located on the island of Majorca.

However, the position is just a temporary one for the 11-time Grand Slam winner. It actually is part of his marketing alliance with PokerStars.com, which claims to oversee the world's biggest online poker tournament and this week concluded a 22-day event that had a prize pool of more than $55.5 million and 126, 000 entrants. (Due to federal regulations, players in the U.S. are not allowed to participate.)

Nadal, who said he is planning on a return to tennis action in time for the first Grand Slam of 2013, the Australian Open in January, has been working with PokerStars to improve his poker-playing skills. The job at the golf club was more than earning a paycheck — it was intended to teach him how to bluff and improve his poker face.

In the spot, "I'm Not Rafa," Nadal is put behind a reception desk and given a shirt with the name "Tony" on it. He also dons a pair of glasses intended to hide his identity, a la Superman and Clark Kent. A hidden camera then tracks Nadal's progress as unsuspecting golfers ask for assistance.

Although the concept has been used before — among others, NBA star Amar'e Stoudemire went undercover last year as a salesman in a Foot Locker commercial — Nadal's low-key demeanor works in his favor.

One man approaches Nadal to ask for golf assistance, then changes course in mid-sentence. "I need to . . .  You're not . . . you're Rafa!?" "Of course not," Nadal replies.

When two women insist that he looks exactly like Nadal, Rafa says with a straight face, "People have often said that. But, no, I'm not him." "You're not Rafa??" asks another man, refusing to believe Tony. "Well, you look a hell of a lot like him, eh!?"

A man and a woman are almost convinced by Tony that he is not the world-famous tennis player, but take no chances. "Just in case, we are going to take a picture with you."

After several hours, Nadal's shift is over and he is greeted by an executive from PokerStars. "Well done, Rafa. Now you know what bluffing means." "Yes," Nadal replies. "Now I know."

Text offers: "Improve your skills everywhere . . . and be ready for everything."

The closing shot shows Nadal with his glasses off and his true identity revealed. One man, however, is still a bit confused. "Do you play tennis?" he asks Rafa. And with his best poker face, Nadal states, "Sometimes."

(See the full spot here.)

The 26-year-old Nadal won the 2012 French Open but has not been on a tennis court in public since losing in the second round at Wimbledon this past June.

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