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.

• NBC Olympics will debut Olympic Ice Presented by Toyota, a live, daily figure skating show airing nightly (7 PM ET) on NBCSN beginning Feb. 10 and continuing through Feb. 24. Live Olympic figure skating competition will follow the show in primetime. and the NBC Sports app will present a digital-exclusive version of Olympic Ice Presented by Toyota immediately following prime-time coverage beginning Feb. 8.

Which Team Will Win Overwatch League 2018? free polls

Top NBA All-Star Game Votes (To Date)
Eastern Conference
1.  Giannis Antetokounmpo (MIL) 863,416
2.  LeBron James (CLE) 856,080
3.  Kyrie Irving (BOS) 802,834
4.  Joel Embiid (PHI) 433,161
5. Kristaps Porzingis (NYK) 359,459
6.  DeMar DeRozan (TOR) 259,368
7.  Victor Oladipo (IND) 251,886
8.  Kevin Love (CLE) 221,969
9.  Ben Simmons (PHI) 210,085
10. John Wall (WAS) 175,990
Western Conference
1. Kevin Durant (GSW) 767,402
2. Stephen Curry (GSW) 735,115
3. James Harden (HOU) 602,040
4. Russell Westbrook (OKC) 438,469
5. Klay Thompson (GSW) 359,442
6. DeMarcus Cousins (NOP) 356,340
7. Draymond Green (GSW) 325,612
8. Manu Ginobili (SAS) 231,460
9. Kawhi Leonard (SAS) 212,650
10. Carmelo Anthony (OKC) 194,239

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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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.
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.
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.
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.

Survey: Consumers Will Spend A Record $5.3B In Green On St. Patrick‚Äôs Day

By Barry Janoff

"There are only two kinds of people in the world: the Irish and those who wish they were." - Anonymous Irish Proverb

March 9, 2017: Saint Patrick's Day (or the Feast of Saint Patrick) is a cultural and religious celebration held annually on March 17, which is traditionally regarded as date of death for Saint Patrick (c. AD 385–461), the foremost patron saint of Ireland.

More recently, wearing green has turned into a big business of spending green.

This year, thanks to a number of situations, more than 139 million Americans consumers in the U.S. are projected to spend a record $5.3 billion to celebrate St. Patrick’s Day.

Among the purchases and spends: beer, food, candy, non-alcoholic beverages, green clothing and accessories, party decorations and travel to and from bars, restaurants or parties, according to a new survey from the National Retail Federation, conducted by Prosper Insights & Analytics.

People will spend a record average of $37.92 per person, which is up from last year’s $35.37 and also tops the previous record of $36.52 set in 2015.

The projected $5.3 billion total is up dramatically from last year’s $4.4 billion and tops the previous record of $4.8 billion in 2014.

"Now that winter is almost behind us and with St. Patrick’s Day falling on a Friday, we will see more Americans getting together to celebrate with friends and family," Matthew Shay, president and CEO  for NRF, said in a statement.

"Retailers should expect a nice boost in sales as consumers purchase apparel, decorations, food and beverages to help make their celebrations special," said Shay.

Although the St. Patrick's Day spend will set a record, it trails other one-day celebrations. By comparison, consumers this year spent $18.2 billion on Valentine’s Day (down from $19.7 billion in 2016); and in 2016 spent $21.4 billion on Mother’s Day, $17.3 billion on Easter and $8.4 billion on Halloween, per NFR studies.

The NRF tracks St. Patrick’s Day spend back to 2007, when it was $3.8 billion. Spending went down in 2008 ($3.6 billion) and 2009 ($3.3 billion).

But it started to slightly rebound in 2010 ($3.4 billion) before taking a significant upward trajectory to $4.1 billion in 2011, $4.5 billion in 2012, $4.7 billion in 2013 and what was, until the 2017 projection, a record $4.8 billion in 2014.

According to the survey, 83% of those celebrating will wear green to show their alliance with Irish pride, 31% plan to make a special dinner and 27% will celebrate at a party or in a  bar or restaurant.

In addition, 23% will decorate their homes or offices with an Irish theme, 15% will attend a private party and 15% plan to attend a St. Patrick’s Day parade — with that number going up to 21% in the Northeast (think Boston and New York).

Among the hot items, the NRF's St. Patrick’s Day survey found that 52% of celebrants will purchase food, 41% beverages — among them, McDonald’s is celebrating with limited-edition Shamrock Shakes (in five flavors) — 28% on apparel or accessories, 22% decorations and 14% for candy.

Among all St. Patrick's Day shoppers, 39% will make their purchases in grocery stores, 29% in discount stores, 21% in bars/restaurants and 18% in department stores.

Sports teams also love to get in on the action.

The NBA’s online store has a collection of St. Patrick’s Day green items, from T-shirts, hoodies and socks to blankets and pillow cases, led, of course, by the Boston Celtics. MLB, the NFL and NHL also have an array of items at their respective online shopping destinations.

St. Patrick’s Day is most popular among people 18-24 years old, with 77% celebrating. However, the biggest spenders will be among people ages 25-34, who will have a net average of $46.55 per person.

Just behind them, people ages 35-44 will spend an average of $43.20 per person, people 45-54 an average of $40.30, and 18-24 age range will spend an average $37.37.

Apparently, people allocate less money for St. Patrick’s Day as they hit AARP age. Those spending least on average: people 55-64 ($33.70) and those 65 and older ($27.40).

The overall average among adults 18-plus is $37.90.

According to Pam Goodfellow, principal analyst for Prosper Insights, "St. Patrick’s Day is a time for consumers of all ages to have fun and celebrate all things Irish whether it is attending a parade, cooking an Irish meal, or meeting friends at a bar or restaurant.

"While more Americans are planning to celebrate the shamrock-filled day, expect Millennials to take the lead among the festivities."

The survey was conducted among 7,609 people Feb. 1-8. It has a margin of error of plus or minus 1.1 percentage points.

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