SBD/Issue 20/Sports Industrialists

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  • What's NYRR President & CEO Mary Wittenberg Up To This Weekend?

    Wittenberg Plans To Help At
    BofA Chicago Marathon

    Ever wonder how executives in sports business spend their weekends? THE DAILY this week continues "What's Up For The Weekend," providing readers with an inside look at people in our industry. This week, we catch up with N.Y. Road Runners President & CEO MARY WITTENBERG, who chatted with Staff Writer Theresa Manahan.

    Q: What are your plans for weekend?

    Wittenberg: Headed to Bank of America Chicago Marathon!

    Q: What are you most looking forward to?


    • Seeing friends in the industry: athletes, agents, shoe companies and sponsors, race directors and broadcasters

    • Supporting our friends at the Chicago Marathon

    • Cheering for and supporting our NYRR employees running (including pregame dinner Sat night!) and so many of our local New Yorkers running!

    • Lots of final tune up meetings for N.Y., media briefing and expo appearance with the four other World Marathon Majors chief executives and other strategy meetings for 2011+

    • Seeing a great race and competition. Especially interested in World Marathon Majors title fight and -- it is always fun to watch in awe as 52-year-old JOAN BENOIT SAMUELSON continues to amaze us. She’s trying to run sub 2:50. If I could only run like that!

    Q: What do you like to watch and read on weekends?


    • Watch: my favorite -- My kids' sports games, our races, other sports, culture whenever we can get it -- museums to Broadway plays

    • Read: books with kids and the N.Y. Times. Getting a book in is a more rare treat these days, but love when I can get some pages in

    Q: What do you like to cook or bake for the weekend?


    • Baking reserved for Christmas cookies with kids! Oven doesn’t even work properly. Working on that.

    • Cooking -- fun to just keep it simple. I am more into the gathering with family and friends than the cooking.

    Q: What are your weekend workout routines?

    Wittenberg: 6am run Saturday and likely earlier on Sunday! (Chicago Marathon Race Dir CAREY PINKOWSKI) has put me to work -- so I need to fit my run in before their early race! Love running at an event -- lots of running friends in the industry -- so always easy to find good company. When at home, I try to slide some spinning and weights in too.

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  • This Week's Newsmakers: EA Sports Scores Big With "FIFA Soccer 11"

    THE DAILY each Friday offers our take on the performances over the past week of people and entities in sports business. Here are this week's newsmakers:


    WIN: "FIFA SOCCER 11" -- Apparently World Cup fever continues to be an epidemic, as Electronics Arts' soccer title assumes the title of "fastest-selling sports video game ever" this week. EA has sold 2.6 million copies of the game one week after its release, which is up around 29% from last year. Aided by strong acclaim from critics, the soccer game has now passed "Madden NFL" as the company's biggest-selling title on a global basis. EA also scores points on the comedy front with Suns G STEVE NASH and MLS Galaxy F LANDON DONOVAN, who lend themselves to a viral marketing campaign for EA's Pro Player Challenge, which aims to identify the best "FIFA Soccer 11" player among pro soccer players.

    LOSE: ANDRETTI AUTOSPORT -- After closing out a ’10 IndyCar season that sees the team fail to have a car factor into the season-long points championship, Andretti Autosport is facing the loss of the primary sponsors for its two best performers. TONY KANAAN is parting ways with long-time partner 7-Eleven, and sources say Izod will not return to RYAN HUNTER-REAY’s ride. With CHIP GANASSI and ROGER PENSKE continuing to dominate the open-wheel circuit, the potential loss of two quality drivers could make AA one of the sport’s have-not teams.

    DRAW: RYDER CUP -- The event stumbles out of the gate as a massive downpour in Wales washes out most of the first day, but not before the U.S. team is forced to hit the merchandise tent to replace its faulty rain gear. The rain returns over the weekend, prompting the first Monday action in the 83-year history of the Ryder Cup. But the event gets the exciting finish it needs Monday afternoon as RICKIE FOWLER and the U.S. team come from behind and nearly pull off an improbable upset. Looking ahead, the PGA Tour reportedly has committed to amending its schedule in order to hold future Ryder Cups in early September when the weather is less likely to wreak havoc.

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  • Executive Transactions

    Mannion Out As
    President Of Dodgers

    In L.A., Dylan Hernandez reports the Dodgers have "severed ties" with President DENNIS MANNION, and team Owner FRANK MCCOURT will now "resume overseeing the day-to-day operations" of the franchise. McCourt will go back to being head of baseball operations, and GM Ned Colletti will "once again report directly to the owner." No reasons for Mannion's departure were provided. Mannion joined the team in November '07 as COO and was promoted to President in March '09 when Frank promoted JAMIE MCCOURT from President to CEO (L.A. TIMES, 10/8).

    EXECS: CTVglobemedia Inc. appointed KEVIN CRULL COO, effective Jan. 1. Crull will become President when the deal is finalized to make CTV a division of Bell parent company BCE Inc., replacing the retiring IVAN FECAN (GLOBE & MAIL, 10/7)....The Eagles promoted Dir of Legal Affairs AILEEN DALY to General Counsel (Eagles)....MI Developments appointed TIMOTHY RITVO to the new position of VP/Racing for the East Coast. Ritvo's primary office will be at Gulfstream Park (, 10/6)....Michigan Int'l Speedway (MIS) promoted ROB HEMMIG to Group Sales Manager and CHRIS LYKINS to Consumer Marketing Specialist. The track also named SEAN NOWACZYK Mobile Ticket Office/Group Sales Coordinator and IAN KIRKPATRICK Ticket Office Agent (MIS)….The Predators named LAUREN YONO Account Services Manager for Corporate Partnerships (THE DAILY)....Black Coaches & Administrators expanded its BOD from four to 10 members, adding Univ. of Michigan professor DR. PERCY BATES; Univ. of Texas-Arlington women's track coach BEVERLY KEARNEY; Colgate Univ. AD DAVID ROACH; Univ. at Buffalo Senior Associate AD ANUCHA BROWNE SANDERS; MEAC Commissioner DR. DENNIS THOMAS; and Duke Univ. AD KEVIN WHITE (INDIANAPOLIS STAR, 10/7).

    Do you have an executive announcement? If so, please send to

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  • Names In The News

    In Maryland, Danielle Ulman profiled attorney DAVID PESSIN, who prepares prenuptial agreements for pro athletes. Prenups "generally take about six months to complete and the work can come in at any time of the year," but Pessin said that his "busiest times are between seasons." To show clients "what's at stake without a prenup," Pessin said that he "often bounces financial figures off a divorce lawyer, asking the attorney to play judge and figure out what a court might give a spouse in a divorce." Pessin: "It's fascinating to see the divorces. I've had three prenups with athletes where they got divorced. All of them held water. There was no wiggle room there" (Maryland DAILY RECORD, 10/4).

    HOPING TO MAKE A DIFFERENCE: Thursday’s edition of NBC's "Today" featured correspondent JENNA BUSH HAGER travelling to Haiti with Haitian native and Kings C SAMUEL DALEMBERT to survey the recovery of the country following the devastating earthquake it suffered almost nine months ago. Dalembert "was shocked to find a very different country from the place where he grew up." Bush Hager: “His goal is to shine a spotlight on the desperate situation and the place he calls home." The Samuel Dalembert Foundation is "working with UNICEF to sponsor programs, like Sports For Peace, that help children cope with their loss and fears through sports" ("Today," NBC, 10/7).

    Yormark Says He Has Not Had Anything But
    Water To Drink For The Last Three Years

    LEAN, MEAN, MARKETING MACHINE: In Ft. Lauderdale, David Raterman examines the fitness habits of NHL Panthers President & COO MICHAEL YORMARK, who works out "seven days a week." Yormark said he gets to the gym at 3:45am, and training "starts at 4:15." He has not had "anything to drink except water for three years," and he estimated his body fat percentage at 7-8% (South Florida SUN-SENTINEL, 10/8).

    NAMES: Primo Water Corp., owned by Single-A Carolina League Winston-Salem Dash Majority Owner BILLY PRIM, is "moving forward ... with an initial public offering that it expects to yield up to" $115M. The Dash "received nearly $28 million in financing from Winston-Salem to help build a $48.7 million downtown baseball stadium," which opened this past season (WINSTON-SALEM JOURNAL, 10/7)....Former NFLer ARCHIE MANNING "has teamed up with Harrah's New Orleans Hotel & Casino to open a restaurant on Fulton Street, in the casino's entertainment corridor." Groundbreaking is "scheduled for January" and the restaurant "will open in fall 2011" (New Orleans TIMES-PICAYUNE, 10/8)....Former Dolphins, Marlins and Panthers Owner WAYNE HUIZENGA "has bought the Federica Club, an upscale" golf club in St. Simon's Island, Ga., "built by Sea Island Co. before it went into bankruptcy" (, 10/7)....Celtics C SHAQUILLE O'NEAL "plans to spend an afternoon sitting like a statue on a bench in Harvard Square so fans can take photos with him" (BOSTON HERALD, 10/8).

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  • Time To Participate In The 2010 SBD/SBJ Reader Survey

    The 2010 SportsBusiness Daily/SportsBusiness Journal Reader Survey is now available.
    * Who is the best sports agent?
    * What is your favorite studio show?
    * Who is your favorite broadcast analyst?
    * What is the most powerful brand in sports
    * What is your favorite sports-related mobile app?
    * Who are the most effective team owners?

    Click HERE to begin the survey.

    Cast your votes, then look for the results during the week of November 29 in both SportsBusiness Daily and SportsBusiness Journal.

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