More money, tech in preview centers Champions 2015: Tom Jernstedt New commish, expansion greet AFL season Youth lacrosse tourney inspired by LLWS Comcast stakes claim at SunTrust Park Will Cowherd be the new Maher? The NHL and the Canadian dollar IMG College deepens ties with NCAA Toyota, iHeartRadio play Rock ‘n’ Roll Univision to produce weekly NBA shows
SBJ/March 31-April 6, 2014/Coast to CoastPrint All
The 3-D Paul Millsap figure is more than 21 feet tall and weighs 700 pounds.
Photo by:ANDRE HICKMAN / HAWKS PHOTOS
The Atlanta Hawks are putting up a billboard early next month that features a 3-D image of forward Paul Millsap dunking. The installation tips off a yearlong promotion in which fans can enter to win one of three opportunities to spend time with Millsap by calling **DUNK from their mobile phones.
The finished billboard.
Quicken Loans signs with Tiger’s tourney
Quicken Loans signed a multiyear deal to take over for AT&T as title sponsor of the golf tournament hosted by the Tiger Woods Foundation. The Quicken Loans National will be played June 23-29 at Congressional Country Club.
Sox ticket sales trending up
Boston Red Sox ticket sales for the 2014 season are up 14.5 percent after last year’s World Series win but still not at the level seen after the team’s 2004 championship, according to a Boston Globe report. The report quoted team COO and Fenway Sports Group President Sam Kennedy: “I don’t think we’ll return to the crazed marketplace of ’05 to ’08.”
Blackhawks raising ticket prices
The Chicago Blackhawks will increase season-ticket prices by an average of 8 percent next season, marking the team’s fifth straight year of higher prices, according to a Crain’s Chicago Business report. The overall average ticket price for games will be $78.79.
Sox open Comcast-branded space
The Chicago White Sox expanded their partnership with Comcast and are opening Xfinity Zone at U.S. Cellular Field. The 2,200-square-foot bar and restaurant — with digitally advanced video technology — is located on the 100 level of the ballpark near the right-field corner and is set to open today for the team’s season opener.
Rockies sign Marley Coffee
Pearce donates to hospital
Snowboarder Kevin Pearce, whose 2009 crash while training for the Olympics left him with a traumatic brain injury, has given $10,000 to the Englewood, Colo., hospital that cared for him. Pearce donated the money to Craig Hospital, which helped with his rehabilitation, through his “Love Your Brain” campaign.
Pats, Revs to play on upgraded turf
Gillette Stadium is upgrading its field surface, and the New England Patriots and New England Revolution selected FieldTurf’s Revolution turf system and VersaTile drainage and shock underlayment for use. The installation will be completed in time for the Revolution’s next home match, April 12.
Royals in bed with Magniflex
The Kansas City Royals reached a team-level deal with mattress company Magniflex. Outfielder Nori Aoki, who was acquired by the Royals in December, serves as a spokesman for the international company’s Magni Sports mattress line.
BlueClaws conduct suite raffle
The Lakewood BlueClaws are putting on a charity raffle in which four winners will each receive a quarter-share of a suite for 2014, giving each winner access to the suite for 17 games this season. Three hundred tickets will be sold for the raffle, at $100 each, and the four winners will be drawn on Thursday. The BlueClaws are a Class A affiliate of the Philadelphia Phillies.
Miami Dolphins CEO Tom Garfinkel (white shirt at center), alumni, cheerleaders and staff attended the party at Sun Life Stadium.
Photo by:MIAMI DOLPHINS
Thousands attend renewal party
The Miami Dolphins drew a crowd of nearly 6,000 on March 22 for a season-ticket renewal/membership event at Sun Life Stadium. The team pushed back its renewal launch by almost three months to have time to create and launch their new membership program. A Miami Herald report quoted team CEO Tom Garfinkel: “We had record new sales in one day. We sold over 1,500 new season tickets.”
Aramark signs Zimmern for Gophers, Vikings
Bregal acquires Shock Doctor
Mouthguard maker Shock Doctor has been acquired by private equity firm Bregal Partners. The Minnetonka, Minn., company, with projected revenue of $100 million in the next two years, had been owned since 2008 by Norwest Equity Partners.
Senate OKs bill to give track tax break
The Iowa Senate approved by a 36-9 vote a bill that would give Iowa Speedway a state sales tax break of up to $9 million, according to a Des Moines Register report. The track was purchased by NASCAR in November.
Burgers and shakes at PNC Park
Pirates on cans, brewer in park
The Pittsburgh Pirates reached a multiyear partnership with Pittsburgh Brewing Co. that will see the beermaker offer Pirates-themed cans throughout the summer. The Pirates and Pittsburgh Brewing also will unveil the I.C. Light Landing at PNC Park, a new branded spot in the left-field bleachers area.
Arena effort gets site clearance
Sacramento Superior Court Judge Raymond Cadei awarded possession of a former Macy’s men’s store location to the city, helping further clear the way for the Sacramento Kings’ proposed $448 million arena, according to a Sacramento Bee report.
Spurs extend with KENS-TV
Spurs Sports & Entertainment and KENS-TV (CBS) reached a multiyear extension for the airing of San Antonio Spurs games on the station. As the official local TV partner of the Spurs, KENS will broadcast up to 14 games a season. The Spurs and KENS have been partners since 2000.
SANTA CLARA, CALIF.
Goal posts come down fast
Levi’s Stadium will have the first automatic, collapsible goal posts in the NFL, according to a 49ers.com report. It will take one grounds crew member eight seconds to lower the uprights and crossbar onto the field.
Seahawks, Sounders sever business ties
The Seattle Seahawks and MLS Sounders jointly announced that the Sounders’ business operations will become independent, effective April 30. The Sounders will move their business operations and full-time business staff to new office space. The teams had shared business operations since the Sounders were admitted to MLS in 2007.
Track signs battery producer
Sonoma Raceway signed Shorai Inc. to a two-year deal. Founded in 2010 and based in Sunnyvale, Calif., Shorai currently supplies batteries to NASCAR Sprint Cup Series team Chip Ganassi Racing with Felix Sabates.
Track wants to host non-race events
Sonoma Raceway plans to apply for a variety of updates to its Sonoma County use permit, seeking the ability to host non-racing activities at the facility. Events could include music festivals and smaller social and fundraising events. The application represents the raceway’s first effort to make significant changes to its operating conditions in 17 years.
COAST TO COAST — BEYOND THE COASTS
Evian, Kappa renew kit deal
Ligue 1 club Evian renewed its kit deal with Italian sportswear brand Kappa for another three years, according to a SoccerEx report. Kappa will provide match-day and training wear to the team until the end of the 2016-17 season, as well as producing new lines of replica merchandise for fans.
Olympic Stadium increases capacity
The Berlin Olympic Stadium increased its capacity to 74,649, according to a Berliner Morgenpost report. The stadium operating company said that the installation of Row 40 below the suite level created 405 additional seats.
Federation building academy
The German Football Federation will move within Frankfurt and build a new performance center for $69 million, according to a Die Welt report. The federation will build the academy on the site of Frankfurt’s horse racecourse by the end of 2018. The project is expected to start in 2017.
SC Freiburg, brewer sign extension
Bundesliga club SC Freiburg extended its partnership with the Rothaus brewery for another three years, until 2017. The brewery has been a premium sponsor of the club since 2005.
Team extends deal with truck maker
Bayern Munich extended its partnership with truck and bus manufacturer MAN until 2016. MAN will increase its involvement in the club’s football and basketball teams. Each partnership — with the football team since 2008 and with the basketball team since 2011 — includes ad presence at the Allianz Arena and the Audi Dome as well as player promotions.
WTA event signs premium partner
The WTA event in Nuremberg, the Nürnberger Versicherungscup, signed a deal with networking and technology firm NCP to become a premium partner of the tournament. This year’s tournament is scheduled for May 16-24.
RIO DE JANEIRO
The Corinthians team held its first official practice March 15 amid fears of facility delays.
Photo by:GETTY IMAGES
FIFA officials said that a financial impasse that has threatened to cause more delays at São Paulo’s World Cup stadium has been resolved, according to a Reuters report. The Itaquerao stadium, being built by the Corinthians club, is due to open on April 15, nearly four months after the December 31 deadline set by FIFA. There had been uncertainty over who would finance temporary installations such as media and VIP facilities, sponsors’ tents, and stadium screens.
SEOUL, SOUTH KOREA
German club on summer schedule
Bundesliga club Bayer Leverkusen will visit Seoul this summer to play FC Seoul of K League Classic on July 30, according to a Yonhap report. Bayer Leverkusen has two South Korean players on its roster.
Fans scoop up team shares
CSKA Sofia supporters were sent into a purchasing frenzy by the official release of shares of the club on the Bulgarian Stock Exchange, according to an Inside World Football report. Fans bought more than 55,000 shares in less than an hour after they went on sale March 21. There were 3 million shares made available with price packages at about 3 leva ($2.12).
Sydney FC signs new shirt sponsor
A-League club Sydney FC signed a three-year premium partnership with StarTrack, which will see the Australian freight and logistics provider become the Sky Blues’ back-of-shirt sponsor. The partnership begins July 1 and will run until the end of the 2016-17 season.
For more international news, visit www.sportsbusinessdaily.com/global.