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• 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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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
Jun072018

Special Olympics USA 2018 Games Seattle Adds Partners For Activation, Marketing

NYSJ Sports-Entertainment Business News Service

June 6, 2018: With the 2018 Special Olympics USA Games in Seattle less than a month way, a bevy of companies have joined the roster to support, activate and enhance the experience for more than 4,000 athletes and coaches, family members, volunteers and fans.

Among the new or recently joined sponsors, and those that have expanded their roles: Accenture, Amazon, Baden Sports, F5, Holland America Line, Lyft, Nordstrom, REI, Tommy Hilfiger, Walmart and the Walt Disney Co.

Among the companies already aligned with the event are premier partner Microsoft; platinum partners  Bank of America, Coca-Cola, ESPN and Kaiser Permanente; gold medal partners KPMG, Paccar and United Airlines; such silver medal partners as Boeing, Brooks, Finish Line, Starbucks and T-Mobile; and bronze medal partners including Alaska Airlines and Hasbro.

The USA Games (July 1-6) are being supported by a plethora of local companies and organizations; and sports teams including MLB’s Seattle Mariners, the NFL Seahawks, MLS Sounders, WNBA Storm, Major League Rugby team Seawolves and the Reign of the National Women’s Soccer League.

Special Olympics partner WWE has expanded its supporting role with the USA Games.

WWE will promote the event through its global media assets including the WWE Network, TV, digital and social media, as well as during upcoming WWE live events nationwide. WWE Superstars will be supporting all Special Olympics athletes at the USA Games by conducting daily autograph signings, medal presentations and attending the Opening Ceremonies.

“The 2018 USA Games will be one of the largest and most significant events in the history of Seattle and its success will be due in part to the support of our corporate partners and our shared commitment to furthering the ideals of inclusion,” Beth Knox, president and CEO for the 2018 Special Olympics USA Games, said in a statement.

“With less than a month to go until the Opening Ceremony, these new corporate partners are helping us reach our fundraising goal while engaging their employees in a meaningful way.”

Amazon, the presenting sponsor of the Special Olympics USA Games Closing Ceremony, said that people who shop at smile.amazon.com can designate “Special Olympics USA Games” and have the Amazon Smile Foundation donate 0.5% of the purchase price from eligible products to the 2018 USA Games.

Amazon also said it would donate an additional $10,000 to support the 2018 USA Games.

Amazon, in partnership with the South Lake Union Chamber of Commerce, the South Lake Union Community Council, and the Denny Triangle Neighborhood Association, has activated local restaurants to participate in a campaign called “Choose to Include.”

Participating restaurants will feature an existing dish from their menu or create a new dish that “celebrates the spirit of Special Olympics.” At the end of the campaign (June 22-July 6), each restaurant will donate a portion of proceeds from these dishes directly to the Special Olympics USA Games.

Also new, Amazon Echo and Alexa device users can say, “Alexa, make a donation to the Special Olympics USA Games,” and “Alexa will automatically charge the card on file to make the donation.”

Among the new activations:

Accenture is the official sponsor of gymnastics and a presenting sponsor of the Future of Inclusion Forum (July 2).

Holland America Line is the presenting sponsor of the 2018 USA Games Art Murals.

Nordstrom is the Presenting Sponsor of the Special Olympics Young Athletes Festival at the 2018 USA Games. Geared to all children ages 2 to 7,

T-Mobile is a sponsor of soccer and has established a text-to-give program in support of the 2018 USA Games.

Walmart is the presenting sponsor of the 2018 USA Games Family Program.

The Walt Disney Company is the presenting sponsor of the 2018 USA Games Volunteer Program.

See a full list of USA Games partners here.

Special Olympics, ESPN Plans USA Games Challenge

PHOTOS COURTESY Special Olympics

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