SBD/September 26, 2013/People and Pop Culture

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  • Executive Transactions

    USA Luge named former ECHL Trenton Titans Exec Dir JIM LEAHY CEO. Leahy also had stints with the Sabres, Nets and 76ers (USA Luge)….The ATP BB&T Atlanta Open named Athlon Sports VP/Sales for National Accounts EDDIE GONZALEZ Tournament Dir & Chief Development Officer. The move is pending approval from the ATP World Tour (BB&T Open)….N.Y. Road Runners named UNICEF U.S. Fund Senior Dir of Sports Partnerships CHRIS WEILLER VP/Media & PR. Weiller had previous stints with the Bobcats, Knicks, MSG and the NBA (NYRR)….The Tigers promoted Manager of Media Relations AILEEN VILLARREAL to Dir of Media Relations (Tigers)....The Single-A Florida State League Daytona Cubs promoted Assistant GM JOSH LAWTHER to GM, replacing BRADY BALLARD, who left to become Historic Dodgertown VP in Vero Beach, Fla. (, 9/25)….Nike Golf promoted Global Brand Integration Dir DANIEL SCHENK to EMEA Marketing Dir, effective Dec. 1. Schenk will relocate from Nike HQs in Oregon to the company’s European HQs in the Netherlands (, 9/25)….Stanford Univ. promoted KEVIN BLUE to Senior Associate AD/External Relations, BRIAN RISSO to Dir of Athletic Communications, DAVID SERTICH to Dir of Business Strategy and MATT DOYLE to Associate AD/Football Operations (Stanford).

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  • Names In The News

    Agassi drew big laughs when he teased former U.S. Rep. Mary Bono at the dinner

    In DC, Roberts & Argetsinger report ANDRE AGASSI on Tuesday "unexpectedly lit up the Community Anti-Drug Coalition of America's annual dinner." Agassi "deftly toed the line between sincere and sassy." He drew a "big laugh teasing the dinner's equally sassy emcee," former U.S. Rep. MARY BONO. Agassi said to Bono of their meeting years earlier at a charity match, "I was shocked by how much you were staring at STEFAN EDBERG's ass" (WASHINGTON POST, 9/26).

    TEEING OFF: The ninth Annual Birdies for Breast Cancer Celebrity Golf Classic pro-am on Monday "raised approximately $500,000" for the Cristie Kerr Women's Health Center.  The event featured Kerr and other LPGAers along with Nets coach JASON KIDD, Hockey HOFer MARK MESSIER, former MLBer MIKE PIAZZA, former NFLer SHAUN O'HARA and "several television and film stars," including KEVIN SORBO (, 9/25)....A lawyer for Golf HOFer GARY PLAYER said that Player has "settled a dispute with a former friend" over a $1M transaction that took place in '99. Businessman DAVE KING had "threatened to sue" Player for "not paying back what he said was a loan." Player "argued it was not a loan but does not deny that the transaction took place" (AP, 9/25).

    WHAT RHYMES WITH UGGLA? Atlanta-based songwriter AARON CHEWNING has come out with a song and video supporting the NL East champion Braves called, “Baselines,” a parody of ROBIN THICKE’s chart topper "Blurred Lines." The video, which was released Monday night, is the third this season from Chewning, but the first commissioned by the team. Chewning: "They helped partner with us for the second one to help us out, and then the third one we were working with them the whole time." No current players appear in the video due to the taping schedule, but former Braves C JAVY LOPEZ is prominently featured (WXIA-NBC, 9/24).

    NEW ON STAFF: Athletes' Performance named former NFLer JORDAN PALMER as its lead QB coach. Palmer was hired by and will report to Athletes' Performance Dir of Football Development and Pro Football HOFer WARREN MOON. Palmer is Moon's first hire for the specialized preparation staff for clients training for the NFL Draft following his joining the company in August (Liz Mullen, Staff Writer).

    VARIABLE PAYDAY: U.S. men's national soccer team coach JURGEN KLINSMANN will earn between $500,000 and $10.5M in bonuses "based on how deep" the team advances at the '14 FIFA World Cup in Brazil. U.S. Soccer Federation financial statements for April 1, 2012 through March 31, 2013 showed Klinsmann's base salary is $2.5M, "the largest in USSF coaching history." It is "unclear how much he received for guiding the national team to a World Cup berth" (, 9/25).

    NAMES: Encore Sports & Entertainment signed Redskins QB KIRK COUSINS for all off-the-field work, including marketing, speaking and philanthropy (Mullen)….The MLB Rangers donated 550 tickets to last night’s game against the Astros to Southeast Arlington Little League players and their families (, 9/25)….Yankees 3B ALEX RODRIGUEZ “was dining at Nobu" when he spotted Baseball HOFer HANK AARON at a nearby table and approached to say hello. Aaron was dining with Richard Petty Motorsports and MLL N.Y. Lizards Owner ANDREW MURSTEIN (N.Y. POST, 9/26)….Celtics F KRIS HUMPHRIES spent time with kids from Boston’s Holland Elementary School yesterday as part of the team’s Read to Achieve event onboard the city’s Duck Boats (BOSTON HERALD, 9/26)….Bulls F LUOL DENG earlier this month sold his three-bedroom town home in a gated Northbrook, Ill., community for $474,000 (, 9/25)….Tennis player NOVAK DJOKOVIC yesterday announced he is “engaged to marry his longtime girlfriend, JELENA RISTIC” (REUTERS, 9/25).

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