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NEWS REAL

• FIFA has postponed plans to expand the World Cup from 32 to 48 teams for the 2022 event in Qatar. The plan is still being considered for the 2026 World Cup, which will be staged in the U.S., Canada and Mexico. According to FIFA, “(There was not enough) time for a detailed assessment of the potential logistical impact.” The World Cup is scheduled for Nov. 21-Dec. 18, 2022.

• The NFL and NFL Players Association have unveiled two joint agreements that are intended to “support further resources directed to address pain management and behavioral health.” Full story here.

• The U.S. Women’s National Team Players Association, LinkedIn CEO Jeff Weiner, and social impact education innovator EVERFI, Inc. have oined the students of Santee Elementary School in San Jose to launch The Compassion Project for the 2019-2020 school year, described as a “national nonprofit dedicated to providing compassion education to elementary school students across the U.S.”

• The U.S. Golf Association has aligned with Marvel Entertainment to create exclusive golf education products to “engage junior golfers on the essential elements to learning the game." Scheduled to launch in June at the 2019 U.S. Open Championship at Pebble Beach, the collaboration features printed and digital comic books with many of Marvel’s super heroes The story follows Tony Stark (Iron Man) and other Avengers as they teach the next generation of Marvel Super Heroes about golf. Limited-edition Marvel-themed golf posters will be distributed (while supplies last) at the Junior Experience at the 2019 U.S. Open.

• Major League Lacrosse has signed a deal with Anheuser-Busch to have its Bud Light brand become the official beer partner for the 2019 MLL All-Star Game, being played in Navy-Marine Corps Memorial Stadium, Annapolis, MD on July 27. The deal includes “prominent signage on the playing field, fan zone activation and various on-site promotions at several sports bars and retail locations in the Greater Annapolis area leading up to the All-Star Game.”

• Stating that “we are continually seeking opportunities to evolve our product offerings,’ Kohl’s has signed an exclusive long-term alliance with Fanatics, a global leader in licensed sports merchandise with the addition of “hundreds of thousands of items.” Full story here.

• 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

U.S. Women’s National Team head coach Jill Ellis has named the 23 players who will represent the U.S. in France and seek to defend their FIFA Women’s World Cup crown (July 7-Aug.7).

GOALKEEPERS

Adrianna Franch* (Portland Thorns FC), Ashlyn Harris** (Orlando Pride), Alyssa Naeher** (Chicago Red Stars)
DEFENDERS
Abby Dahlkemper* (NC Courage), Tierna Davidson* (Chicago Red Stars), Crystal Dunn* (NC Courage), Ali Krieger*** (Orlando Pride), Kelley O’Hara*** (Utah Royals FC), Becky Sauerbrunn*** (Utah Royals FC), Emily Sonnett* (Portland Thorns FC)
MIDFIELDERS
Morgan Brian** (Chicago Red Stars), Julie Ertz** (Chicago Red Stars), Lindsey Horan* (Portland Thorns FC), Rose Lavelle* (Washington Spirit), Allie Long* (Reign FC), Samantha Mewis* (NC Courage)
FORWARDS
Tobin Heath*** (Portland Thorns FC), Carli Lloyd**** (Sky Blue FC), Jessica McDonald* (NC Courage), Alex Morgan*** (Orlando Pride), Christen Press** (Utah Royals FC), Mallory Pugh* (Washington Spirit), Megan Rapinoe*** (Reign FC)
* First Women’s World Cup
** Second Women’s World Cup
*** Third Women’s World Cup
**** Fourth Women’s World Cup

KEEPING SCORE

Luka Dončić, Trae Young Head NBA All-Rookie Team
Dallas Mavericks guard-forward Luka Dončić and Atlanta Hawks guard Trae Young have been unanimously selected to the 2018-19 NBA All-Rookie First Team.

Dončić and Young both received NBA All-Rookie First Team votes on all 100 ballots to finish with 200 points each.  They are joined on the NBA All-Rookie First Team by Phoenix Suns center Deandre Ayton (195 points; 95 First Team votes), Memphis Grizzlies forward-center Jaren Jackson Jr. (159 points; 60 First Team votes) and Sacramento Kings forward Marvin Bagley III (156 points; 56 First Team votes).

The 2018-19 NBA All-Rookie Second Team includes LA Clippers guard Shai Gilgeous-Alexander (138 points), Cleveland Cavaliers guard Collin Sexton (132), Clippers guard Landry Shamet (85), New York Knicks center Mitchell Robinson (77) and Hawks guard Kevin Huerter (45).

BUY SELL

Weekend Box Office May 17-19
1. John Wick 3 $57M
2. Avengers: Endgame $29.4M
3. Pokemon Detective Pikachu $24.8M
4. A Dog’s Journey $8M
5. The Hustle $6M
6. The Intruder $4M
7. Long Shot $3.4M
8,. The Sun Is Also A Star $2.6M
9. Poms $2M
10. Uglydolls $1.6M
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).

Thursday
Jun222017

Seattle NFL, MLB, MLS Teams Join Forces To Support Human Rights, LGBT Equality

By Barry Janoff

June 21, 2017: In what will be seen as a historic day in sports, five pro teams in Seattle came together this week in "a coordinated effort to celebrate LGBT equality."

With members of MLB’s Seattle Mariners, the NFL Seattle Seahawks, MLS Sounders FC, WNBA Seattle Storm and National Women’s Soccer League Reign FC in attendance, it marked "the first time that a city’s professional sports teams have partnered together in such an endeavor to stand in solidarity with the LGBT community," according to Athlete Ally, which organized the media conference and supporting activation.

"The Seattle sports community continues to demonstrate the power of sport in standing up and speaking out for LGBT equality," said Hudson Taylor, executive director for Athlete Ally, a non-profit organization whose mission is to "educate and activate athletic communities to eliminate homophobia and transphobia in sports and to exercise their leadership to champion LGBT equality."

"This effort is once again proving that the athletic community won’t be sidelined in the fight for LGBT equality on the field and under the law," said Taylor.

The media event, held on Tuesday (June 20) in The Ninety, the Sounders FC's event space, was part of a larger, on-going effort to bring the challenges facing the LGBT community to the public.

Named as Athlete Ally ambassadors were Brad Evans and Chad Marshall (Sounders FC), Madalyn Schiffel and Lauren Barnes (Reign FC), Sue Bird (Storm) and James Paxton (Mariners).

Athlete Ally said that more than 150 pro and Olympic athletes "have committed to using their platform to champion LGBT equality."

"The good news is that we’re witnessing the greatest expansion of athletic activism in history," said Taylor. "Never before have we seen athletes, teams and leagues speak out so regularly for LGBT equality.

"The launch of today’s partnership with the Seattle sports community is just another sign that the athletic community will no longer ‘stick to sports'."

The Mariners annual Pride Game, scheduled for June 22, will see the team partner with the Greater Seattle Business Assn. and T-Mobile on a special event that includes a ticket special, rainbow Mariners cap and pre-game mixer.

A portion of the tickets sold through the special offer will benefit the GSBA Scholarship Program, which supports LGBT and ally students from the state of Washington.

Some of GSBA’s 2017 scholars will be honored during a pre-game ceremony, scheduled to include Billy Bean, who is leading MLB’s diversity and inclusion efforts. T-Mobile will present the GSBA Scholarship Fund with a $10,000 donation during the pregame ceremony.

"We are stronger and better when we come together, whether it’s a sports team or our community," John Stanton, Seattle Mariners CEO, said in a statement. "The Mariners are proud to join with the Reign, Seahawks, Sounders, Storm and Athlete Ally to take a stand in support of equality and inclusion."

The Seattle Storm’s annual Pride Night is scheduled for June 23 (vs. the Phoenix Mercury).

Supported by PricewaterhouseCoopers, the Storm will be handing out rainbow Thunderstix, while Pride flags and tank tops will also be available for purchase in the Team Shop;

Athlete Ally will be selling a limited supply of "Equality is a Team Sport" T-shirts.

"It’s not just impactful to use professional sports platforms to promote equality, it is our responsibility," Storm president and GM Alisha Valavanis said a statement. “We are honored to lock arms with the Mariners, Reign, Seahawks and the Sounders in Seattle to demonstrate our collective commitment to equality and human rights.

"This special event beautifully illustrates our city’s values and leadership in the space of equality, inclusion and diversity.”

Seattle Reign FC’s Pride match presented by Carter Subaru is scheduled for June 24 (vs. FC Kansas City).

Reign FC is partnering with the Greater Seattle Business Association by donating a portion of proceeds from a special ticket offer to the GSBA Scholarship Fund.

A variety of activities are planned throughout the match, including a national anthem performance by Sensible Shoes, an ensemble part of the Seattle Women’s Chorus, one of the largest LGBTQ-identified women’s choruses in the world.

"Our partnership with the Seattle professional sports community comes at a critical moment in the continued fight for equality and acceptance," said Athlete Ally’s Taylor.

"Across the country, we continue to watch LGBT people be discriminated against, whether it’s through anti-LGBT legislation that’s being introduced, or inconsistent athletic policies that exclude and other LGBT players, coaches, fans, administrators or officials. It’s clear that our work is just beginning in the fight for LGBT acceptance and protection," said Taylor.

Despite On-Going Issues, Controversy, NBA Follows NCAA Back To North Carolina

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