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Classic Sports Network by ESPN (CSN) named GIL LARSEN JR. as Manager of PR. Larsen comes from TBS. CSN promoted PAUL LEGER to Dir/Affiliate Sales for the Southeast (CSN). ...Former ATP player GRANT CONNELL has accepted a consulting position with Tennis Canada. Duties include acting as a liaison between ATP Tour and Tennis Canada (Tennis Canada).
"Bad As I Wanna Be: The DENNIS RODMAN Story" airs Sunday night at 8:00pm ET on ABC, going up against the second-half of the NBA's All-Star Game. Reviews of the film have not been kind: VARIETY's Ray Richmond writes that "the only real surprise ... is that [Rodman] matters enough to merit a two-hour primetime" movie (VARIETY, 2/8). SI says the film's "weakest link is the basketball action" (SI, 2/9). USA TODAY's Ed Martin gives it two stars and writes, "'Bad as I Wanna Be' is as bad as it gets" (USA TODAY, 2/6). In N.Y., Will Joyner writes that the movie "is largely a piling up of soft-filter cliches about growing up black and disadvantaged in America" (N.Y. TIMES, 2/6). Also in N.Y., Eric Mink gives it one-and-a-half stars under the headline "Rodman's Basketball Diary Is So 'Bad'" (DAILY NEWS, 2/6). MAKING THE ROUNDS: Rodman was a guest on the "Tonight Show" with Jay Leno. Rodman, when asked why he thinks he didn't make the All-Star team: "DAVID STERN" (NBC, 2/5).
Among DAVID LETTERMAN's "Ten Things Overheard at the Nancy Kerrigan-Tonya Harding Interview": 10) "For old time's sake, how about I whack the other knee?" 8) "Yeah, like Tara Lipinski never hit anyone with a metal pipe;" 6) "Tonya, do you find your skating skills useful in your current career at Burger King?" 3) "Let's put this behind us and go beat the crap out of Oksana Baiul" (CBS, 2/5)....NBA ref VIOLET PALMER is profiled in EBONY. Palmer: "Rookies so to speak, have to earn their respect, and that's what we are going to have to do" (EBONY, 2/3)....The Second Annual PAUL MITCHELL ASPEN WOMEN'S WEEKEND begins today. Panelists include A.T. Kearney Executive Search VP/Worldwide Media, Entertainment & Sports CATHY GRIFFIN, ABC Sports VP/Programming LYDIA STEPHANS, MARTINA NAVRATILOVA, ANDREA JAEGER and SUSAN DEMATTEI (A.T. Kearney).
A&M RECORDS has joined forces with SHAQUILLE O'NEAL and his manager LEONARD ARMATO on a "long-term marketing and distribution agreement." Under terms of the deal, A&M will market, promote and distribute O'Neal's TWisM releases (Marc Pollack, HOLLYWOOD REPORTER, 2/6)....Meanwhile, STARBUCKS COFFEE will join with MAGIC JOHNSON to develop Starbucks stores in inner-city neighborhoods (SEATTLE TIMES, 2/5).