SBD/January 16, 2014/Franchises

Franchise Notes

In Toronto, Zoe McKnight notes MLS Toronto FC "ramped up their 'bloody big deal' marketing campaign with a television ad advertising Jermain Defoe's departure" from EPL club Tottenham Hotspur FC. In the new ad that first aired on Monday, Brits "are seen spitting out their beverages at the news" of Defoe's departure. The spot had "close to 60,000 online views in just one day." MLSE Senior Dir of Communications Dave Haggith said that the ads, made by agency Sid Lee, N.Y., are "running on national networks TSN and Sportsnet, but the main focus of the marketing campaign is Toronto" (TORONTO STAR, 1/16).

LOWERING THE STEEL CURTAIN: Steelers President Art Rooney II yesterday said that the team "could reduce exhibition game ticket prices as early as next season." In Pittsburgh, Alan Robinson reports a group of NFL owners at league meetings in Dallas last month "discussed lowering preseason game prices." Rooney during a conference call with season-ticket holders said, "We understand the fans' perception of the value of the preseason games" (PITTSBURGH TRIBUNE-REVIEW, 1/16).

THROWN UNDER THE BUSS? Basketball HOFer Magic Johnson said that Lakers Exec VP/Player Personnel Jim Buss "needs to take a few pages from the book written by his father Jerry Buss." Johnson: "You've got to get a guy like Jerry West to be the face of the team. ... You've got to have someone helping Jim. He's got to quit trying to prove a point to everybody that he can do it on his own, get his ego out of it, and just say, ‘Let me get someone beside me to help achieve the goals I want.'" Johnson said Lakers GM Mitch Kupchak is "great, but he doesn't have the power" (L.A. TIMES, 1/16).

BLUE STREAK: In K.C., Robert Cronkleton reported the Royals are "giving fans a sneak peek" at some of their promotions for the '14 season. The Royals are using their Twitter account to make the announcements, as well as putting "some information on its Instagram and Facebook accounts." The team announced that it would "give away special RoyalsCamo jerseys on Memorial Day," and that it "would have six T-Shirt Tuesdays." The Royals also "showed the design of a big KC on a blue T-shirt" for another give-away (K.C. STAR, 1/16).
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