SBD/Morning Buzz

Morning Buzz

Arsenal Names MLS Deputy Commissioner Ivan Gazidis CEO
PGA Tour Policy Board Approves FedEx Cup Playoff Changes
LG Electronics Reaches Multi-Year Deal To Sponsor F1 Series
Lions Sell Out Thanksgiving Day Game, Will Avoid TV Blackout

Publishing Notice: Morning Buzz will not publish tomorrow due to the Thanksgiving holiday. Morning Buzz, The Daily, and Closing Bell will return Monday, December 1.


ARSENAL NAMES MLS DEPUTY COMMISSIONER IVAN GAZIDIS CLUB'S NEW CEO

Gazidis Leaving MLS For Arsenal
English Premier League club Arsenal has named MLS Deputy Commissioner Ivan Gazidis its new CEO, effective in January. In his present position, Gazidis oversees all aspects of MLS competition (Arsenal). Gazidis has been with MLS for 14 years. With Arsenal, Gazidis is "expected to take over many of the duties previously handled" by former Vice Chair David Dein, who left the club last year, "such as player contracts and negotiations" (PA, 11/26).


PGA TOUR POLICY BOARD RATIFIES CHANGES TO FEDEX CUP PLAYOFF FORMAT

The PGA Tour Policy Board Tuesday ratified changes to the structure of the FedEx Cup playoffs, including a revamped points system and a guarantee the champion will be determined at the culminating event, the Tour Championship. The Board also scheduled the Tour Championship for September 24-27, creating a one-week break between the event and the BMW Championship, which will be held from September 10-13 (PGA Tour).

PGA Tour Commissioner Tim Finchem: "We had to re-evaluate the current structure and consider the best ways to maintain interest and excitement throughout the playoffs" (USA TODAY, 11/26).


LG ELECTRONICS ANNOUNCES MULTI-YEAR SPONSORSHIP DEAL WITH F1

LG Electronics Wednesday announced a multi-year deal to become a global partner and technology partner of F1 beginning in January. Per the deal, LG will be designated the official consumer electronics, mobile phone and data processor of F1. LG gets worldwide F1 marketing rights and will be credited on the timing service at F1 events and on TV graphics (LG). Terms were not released, but LG CMO Dermot Boden said that the "sum would amount to tens of millions of dollars over the period" of the deal (REUTERS, 11/26).


LIONS SELL OUT TITANS GAME AT FORD FIELD, WILL AVOID THANKSGIVING BLACKOUT

The Lions have "avoided their first non-sellout of a Thanksgiving Day game in more than a decade," meaning Thursday's Titans-Lions game will be broadcast locally on Detroit's WWJ-CBS. The team has "avoided their fourth straight blackout" this season and its first Thanksgiving Day non-sellout since a '92 game against the Oilers. However, a Lions spokesperson said that tickets "are still available after the Titans returned some of their allotment" (FREEP.com, 11/25).

Meanwhile, the Chargers face possible local blackouts for Sunday's game against the Falcons and the December 4 game against the Raiders, as the "team says 'more than 2,000' tickets remain unsold for both games" (SAN DIEGO UNION-TRIBUNE, 11/26).


NFL ROLLING OUT SPECIAL FITNESS-THEMED SPOTS FOR THANKSGIVING GAMES

The three nationally-televised NFL games on Thanksgiving Day will include special PSAs featuring home-team players in support of NFL Play 60, the league's health and fitness campaign aimed at getting kids to be active for 60 minutes a day. Eagles QB Donovan McNabb, Cowboys LB DeMarcus Ware and Lions WR Calvin Johnson will appear in the spots (NFL).

In support of the Play 60 campaign, the NFL runs a full-page ad in the N.Y. Times. The ad shows Saints QB Drew Brees participating in the NFL Play 60 Take a Player to school initiative with the copy, "Childhood obesity affects 1 out of 3 children in the U.S. NFL Play 60 is committed to reversing this trend" (THE DAILY).


BILLUPS TO WEAR LIMITED-EDITION ADIDAS SHOE FOR THANKSGIVING GAME

Nuggets G Chauncey Billups will wear a special-edition adidas TS Creator Thanksgiving Day shoe for Thursday's home game against the Hornets. The shoe is black and gold in honor of the Univ. of Colorado, Billups' alma mater, and personalized details include inscriptions of "Go Buffs," Billups' initials and his nickname, "Mr. Big Shot." adidas will make 11 pairs, all to be auctioned online by the NBA beginning Friday to benefit the Porter-Billups Leadership Academy (adidas).


BOONE PICKENS STADIUM WILL HAVE ABOUT 15,000 EMPTY SEATS FOR OU-OSU

There will be about 15,000 empty seats at the 60,000-seat Boone Pickens Stadium for Saturday's Oklahoma-Oklahoma State football game (DAILY OKLAHOMAN, 11/26). The reason for the unsold seats is that school officials "decided last spring not to make single-game tickets available for the game," but to sell them only to fans who bought season tickets. The move was "designed to lure Oklahoma fans … to purchase season tickets for their rival" (THEWIZOFODDS.com, 11/25).


CBS INKS MULTI-YEAR PACT TO AIR A-10 MEN'S BASKETBALL CHAMPIONSHIP GAME

CBS Sports Tuesday reached a multi-year deal to broadcast the Atlantic 10 Conference men's basketball championship game beginning in 2010. CBS takes over the game from ESPN. Terms of the deal were not released. As part of the switch, the game will move from Saturday to Selection Sunday, and the "four first-round games will be played at campuses of higher-seeded teams" (Pittsburgh TRIBUNE-REVIEW, 11/26).

The game will take the 1:00pm ET slot vacated by the SEC men's championship game, which will move to ABC (DAYTON DAILY NEWS, 11/26).


CHINA TO ACCEPT LEGAL HORSERACE WAGERS FOR FIRST TIME SINCE ‘49

With the Chinese government recently agreeing to “introduce betting on a trial basis,” the first “legal horse-race wagers since 1949 will be placed on Saturday” when the Orient Lucky City racecourse in Wuhan hosts the China Speed Horse Race Open. The track will hold four races, with cash prizes totaling US$17,143. Betting will be “organized for other horse races at the end of the month” (SHANGHAI DAILY, 11/26).


SBD/SBJ READER SURVEY: STATE OF SPORTS INDUSTRY BONUS QUESTIONS

As part of this year's fourth annual SportsBusiness Daily/SportsBusiness Journal readers survey, THE DAILY offers several bonus questions on the state of the sports industry.  

Most marketable driver outside of NASCAR:
Danica Patrick
56.99%
Helio Castroneves   
14.97%
Lewis Hamilton 
6.22%
Dario Franchitti
4.78%
Ashley Force
3.79%
Responses: 1,109
The sport of IndyCar racing:
Still has major growth potential
48.48%
Has peaked and will remain flat  
27.67%
Has started to decline
11.99%
Responses: 1,155
 
Biggest challenge facing the IndyCar Series in the year ahead:
TV ratings  
33.65%
Marketing its drivers
26.11%
Sponsorship costs
11.62%
Attendance 
11.45%
Health of U.S. automakers
9.89%
Responses: 1,153
Action sport that will enjoy the most growth in the next five years:
Snowboarding    
25.42%
Motocross 
16.86%
BMX 
16.11%
Skateboarding  
12.54%
Surfing 
10.13%
Responses: 1,204
 


SPEED READS….

Former Ducks Exec VP & GM Brian Burke "will have a formal contract offer from the Maple Leafs in his hands" Wednesday, and it is anticipated that he will be introduced as the team's President & GM on Saturday (TORONTO STAR, 11/26).

The UFC will “hold its first event in Germany on June 13 at the Lanxess Arena in Cologne.” UFC-parent Zuffa and European concert promoter Marek Lieberberg inked a contract in Las Vegas last week (SHERDOG.com, 11/25).

Sapp Finishes Second On
ABC's "Dancing With The Stars"
CFL Commissioner Mark Cohon said Tuesday that he is "not in favor of cutting ticket prices in light of the current economic slowdown" and that he would "prefer that CFL teams look at ticket packages and incentives" (TORONTO STAR, 11/26).

A crowd of 12,000 CFL Calgary Stampeder fans attended the team’s Grey Cup victory rally Tuesday at Olympic Plaza (EDMONTON JOURNAL, 11/26).

Warren Sapp Tuesday came in second to Brooke Burke in the season finale of ABC’s “Dancing With The Stars.” Sapp: "I’m just glad I didn’t do any disrespect to the football guys out there. Second" (“Dancing With The Stars,” ABC, 11/25).

 

QUICK HITS….

“There is an awareness of the problem and a focus on dealing with it. I think they have come a long way and deserve credit … and I hope they continue” – Former MLB investigator George Mitchell, lauding MLB owners and the MLBPA for strengthening the league’s drug-testing policy since the Mitchell Report's release in December '07 (N.Y. TIMES, 11/26).

“In these challenging times, we have to work even harder to grow our business” – Citibank spokesperson Steve Silverman, in response to criticism of the bank’s sports sponsorship portfolio, which includes a $400M entitlement deal for the Mets’ new ballpark, as Citi seeks government aid (N.Y. POST, 11/26).

“That in a sense would be a nightmare, to have a Giants-Jets Super Bowl. You know how many angry ticket holders there would be, thinking, and probably rightfully so, that they were entitled to go to the game?” – Giants President & CEO John Mara (N.Y. POST, 11/26).

“Why would it be a distraction? We still have him” – Cavaliers C Zydrunas Ilgauskas, on speculation that Cavaliers F LeBron James will sign with a N.Y. team when he is a free agent in 2010 (NEWSDAY, 11/26).

“It was for the 2,062 guys who deserve whatever was coming to them (the award is about $10,000 per player). For me to be a small part in making that happen, that’s a feeling beyond words” – Former NFLer Herb Adderley, on the NFLPA having to pay $28.1M in damages over licensing revenue (PHILADELPHIA DAILY NEWS, 11/26).

“We’re a team. We’re just a wall apart. Everybody feels like we’re in the same fraternity, trying to promote the same sport” – NBA TV’s Ahmad Rashad, on whether there is any competition with TNT’s Ernie Johnson, Charles Barkley and Kenny Smith (CLEVELAND.com, 11/25).


A LIGHTER BUZZ….

MLB’s adoption of instant replay was chosen as No. 38 in Time magazine’s Best Inventions of 2008, “right there between smog-eating cement and enhanced fingerprints” (MLB.com, 11/25).


HOLIDAY WEEKEND EVENTS….

WEDNESDAY

MLS will hold its expansion draft, allowing the expansion Seattle Sounders FC to select one player from 10 of the 14 teams.

FRIDAY

Comcast-Spectacor will sell discount Flyers merchandise during a "Beat the Clock Sale" at the Wachovia Center. The Black Friday sale will last from 7:00-11:00am ET.

SATURDAY

Universal Sports and universalsports.com will offer live coverage of the FIS' Ski World Cup. Coverage continues into Sunday.

SUNDAY

F1 driver Felipe Massa has organized the Int'l Challenge of Go-Kart Champs, a charity event in Brazil whose competitors will include NASCAR driver Jeff Gordon, former F1 driver Michael Schumacher and IndyCar's Tony Kanaan.

Tennis Channel will debut "Somay Ku," a documentary about Ugandan tennis player Patrick Olobo, at 8:00pm ET. The film was voted Best Documentary at the Malibu Int'l Film Festival.


IN OTHER NEWS….

Online sales for the first 23 days of November declined 4% to $8.19B from $8.51B from the year-ago period, according to comScore Inc. The market-research firm predicts November and December sales will be $29.2B, flat from the same period last year (comScore). The numbers represent a "dreary sign for online retailers, many of which had grown accustomed to double-digit gains" (WALL STREET JOURNAL, 11/26).


THE BACK PAGES….

The Morning Buzz offers today’s back page sports covers from some of the nation’s major metropolitan tabloids:

N.Y. Post
N.Y. Daily News
Newsday
Philadelphia Daily News
Boston Herald

FINAL JEOPARDY!

Tuesday's “Final Jeopardy!” category was “In The News 1952.” 

“Her final testament, read in public after her death, asked for protection of the poor workers she called grasitas.” 


LAUGH TRACK….

THE MONOLOGUES:

CBS’ David Letterman: “Everybody in New York City has Thanksgiving spirit. Today, the Statue of Liberty, honest to God, was holding a cookbook and a meat thermometer. True story. Are you going to be here for the parade in a couple of days? Macy's has the big Thanksgiving Day parade. They have these balloons that float down Broadway. They have a brand-new balloon, the John McCain balloon, but it never gets off the ground. … According to the local news media, Madonna -- you know Madonna, she was married to a guy named Richie -- they got a divorce. Now she's single living here in New York. She'll be spending Thanksgiving with New York Yankee Alex Rodriguez, although Derek Jeter may bat cleanup. ...  Maybe you've heard of Tiger Woods. He was the spokesperson for the Buick motor company for years and years and years. … Well, because of the financial crunch, they're not going to be able to have Tiger Woods as their spokesman anymore, so he's finished with Buick. Boy, I just hope he was able to put aside a little something. General Motors is up front about it. They say, you know, one thing led to another and it turned out they got a much better deal on their new spokesman, Andy Dick, so that's going to be good. ... Are you having trouble with the economy? I found a place to hide my cash. That's what you need to do. Get your cash and hide it. Here's what I do: I put it all in the stock market and in just about a week, nobody can find it. … That Obama, I'm telling you, that Obama is a smart, hard-working guy. He's promised to stabilize the economy. He's going to rebuild the infrastructure, create millions of new jobs and catch Bin LadenPresident Bush said, 'Uh, you can do that?' A lot of people have forgotten about President Bush, but this transitional period is a busy time for President Bush as well. He's busy granting pardons. Today, he pardoned Sarah Palin for her interview with Katie Couric” (“Late Show,” CBS, 11/25).

NBC’s Jay Leno: “Yesterday, President-elect Barack Obama announced his new economic team. You know what he should do? Hire those people who were in charge of his fund-raising campaign. We can pay this thing off in like a week. … I was watching one of the network financial people on cable news today and they said with this bailout thing, the government has set a precedent that if you're a large corporation losing money, you know, due to lack of creativity and poor business decisions, well, the government will just send you a check. Good news for NBC. We're getting a check! … A political organization has filmed a new TV ad thanking Sarah Palin for all she did during the Presidential campaign. I believe the political organization is called the Democratic Party. … The big three automakers are now talking about driving back to Washington in December. Remember the big uproar last week: They all flew to Washington in private jets? Well, now they're going to carpool. No, this is true, and to make sure there aren't any problems, they're driving a Toyota. … The astronauts aboard the space shuttle say they're still struggling with that machine they have. You know, the one that converts urine into drinking water. Yeah, well, that's got to be tricky, huh? … As a way to conserve fresh drinking water, a number of conservation groups are now calling for an end to toilets that flush. They want to do away with flushing toilets. To which, gas station owners say, ‘We are so ahead of you. We've been doing that for years.’ At a jail in Indiana, three male and three female inmates devised a way to sneak between cell blocks, after hours, crawling through the duct work in the ceiling. Guards said the inmates played cards, drank homemade wine and had sex with each other. Prison? Sounds more like college” (“The Tonight Show,” NBC, 11/25).

LATE NIGHT LAUGHS:

Last night’s “Top Ten” list was “Top Ten Signs President Bush Doesn't Care Anymore” (“Late Show,” CBS, 11/25).

10) “Hasn't taken off his Iron Man costume since Halloween.”
9) “The menu for the White House Thanksgiving dinner: corn dogs and Beefaroni.”
8) “Drew a picture of Garfield on Dick Cheney's bald head.”
7) “He's barely trying to ruin the economy anymore.”
6) “Spent the entire weekend in the Oval Office pardoning himself.”
5) “Saw Osama at Arby's drive-thru but didn't feel like chasing him.”
4) “Spends cabinet meetings scanning classified ads for next job.”
3) “Primary focus is surpassing Hank Paulson's high score on ‘Guitar Hero.’”
2) “Asking Obama, ‘How soon can you bail me out of the White House?’”
1) “Started dating hefty interns.”

With the seventh season of ABC’s “Dancing With The Stars” concluding last night, former contestant and comedian Jeffrey Ross roasted the finalists, Brooke Burke, Lance Bass and Warren Sapp. Ross: “Warren, you’re an inspiration. I mean how do you dance eight hours a day everyday for three months and stay so out of shape? At first I thought he was on steroids, but I then I realized he’s just fat. Seriously man, thanks for polishing your head for the big finale” (“Dancing With The Stars,” ABC, 11/25).


LAST NIGHT’S TV MONITOR….

NET SHOW LEAD NEXT ITEMS
ESPN “Around The Horn” Saints’ chances of making the playoffs Future of Andy Reid and Donovan McNabb; Joey Porter refusing to come out of game
ESPN “PTI” Playoff chances for Saints and Packers Will Michael Vick get second chance in NFL?; LeBron James wearing N.Y. sneakers
ESPN “SportsCenter” Cavaliers-Knicks Western Michigan-Ball State; Nets-Lakers
FSN “FSN Final Score” Cavaliers-Knicks Warriors-Wizards; Western Michigan-Ball State

FINAL JEOPARDY….

“Who was Eva Peron?”


If you have any questions, comments or suggestions, please let us know at:
pbounds@sportsbusinessdaily.com.

The Morning Buzz provides an early update of the news and headlines each Monday through Friday at approximately 9:00am ET. If you would like to sign up for an e-mail alert to the Morning Buzz, go to My Account and personalize your e-mail alert options.

Return to top

Related Topics:

Morning Buzz

Video Powered By - Castfire CMS Powered By - Sitecore

Report a Bug