Sunoco Debuts "Essence Of Racing" Campaign Executive Transactions Isiah Thomas Expected Backlash Over Hiring FanDuel Brings On Most Of Zynga Sports Team Georgia Approves Increased Athletic Budget Kentucky Adding Ribbon Boards At Rupp IndyCar Ponders How To Attract Fans Long Term Jeff Gordon Hired As Full-Time Analyst For Fox Danica's Sponsorship Status To Be Telling For NASCAR Classified Advertisements
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FAME'S DAVID FALK is interviewed in the WASHINGTON POST and discusses a number of subjects, saying that in the last four months MICHAEL JORDAN has turned down $300M worth of new deals. Falk: "Basketball -- and a little bit because of Michael's influence -- has become like a hybrid sport. It's really not a team sport anymore. ... [I]t's become a scenario where the star player or two on a team have transcended the boundaries of what it used to be." Falk also talks of his relationship with Wizards Owner ABE POLLIN: "I would like to represent the whole team because it's where I live. And amazingly, he doesn't either agree or visualize that we should be partners in bringing great basketball to Washington. ... (The relationship) is really very, very frustrating" (WASHINGTON POST, 3/23). READY ORR NOT? A CANADIAN PRESS report states that the signing of hockey adolescents, the "latest trend in the world of recruiting has sparked a fierce debate in the hockey world. The question is: when does a player need representation? How young is too young?" The report profiles agent BOBBY ORR whose Woolf Associates "is one of the most aggressive" in signing teen talent." Maple Leafs President KEN DRYDEN: "I don't think it is any good for the kids because I think what happens is you start to imagine you are farther ahead than you are" (CP/EDM. JOURNAL, 3/23).
CASEY MARTIN was profiled on NBC's "Dateline," and Stone Phillips said Martin "knows the world is watching, and not just the golf world. As he chases his dream .... he's come to understand that he's not just out there for himself -- he's out there for others with hopes and dreams just like his." Martin, "I'd like to be a role model. I'd like to do a good job, and give kids that maybe are struggling, give them some hope and say, 'Hey, it's possible' for them. That's the PGA Tour's motto -- anything's possible. I'd like to carry that banner" ("Dateline," NBC, 3/22).
ABL Rage GM CATHY ANDRUZZI will be leaving the team to pursue other opportunities (ABL)....N.Y.-based WorldLink East, a direct response TV sales company, named SUE ABRUZZESE-THORMAN Dir of Business Development, GINNY MALLEY Sales Manager and CHRISTINE TSAGAROUDAS and ARELIS TORRES as Account Executives. Abruzzese-Thorman was former VP/Program Sales at Fox Sports Net (WorldLink East)....NFL Oilers Media Relations Dir DAVE PEARSON resigned to become Dir of PR for the Seahawks (HOUSTON CHRONICLE, 3/21).
In Detroit, Jo-Ann Barnas writes that "Edge of Glory," a new book by CHRISTINE BRENNAN that takes a behind-the- scenes look at figure skaters in the year leading up to the '98 Winter Games, "reveals some unflattering moments" of TARA LIPINSKI's Olympic quest "and portrays her camp in constant disarray." Lipinski's agent MIKE BURG: "I have no comment on the book. I wouldn't justify a gossip book on skating, which is what it is." In other news, the Lipinskis have hired PAT KINGSLEY to be Tara's press agent. L.A.- based Kingsley handles publicity for SHARON STONE, MERYL STREEP and SEAN PENN (DETROIT FREE PRESS, 3/23)....The Golden Raspberry Foundation voted DENNIS RODMAN worst supporting actor, worst screen couple (with JEAN-CLAUDE VAN DAMME) and worst new star for his role in "Double Team" (HOLLYWOOD REPORTER, 3/23)....JUSTIN LEONARD was featured in the N.Y. TIMES MAGAZINE's "MEN'S FASHION OF THE TIMES" under the sub-head, "At 25, Justin Leonard is poised to win and helping to change golf's reputation as the world's worst- dressed sport" (N.Y. TIMES MAGAZINE, 3/22).