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Volume 25 No. 66
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Closing Bell, July 10, 2006

Jeld-Wen, PGA Tour Ink Six-Year Deal Around The Players Championship
Vonage Becomes First-Ever Presenting Partner Of WNBA All-Star Game
MLB Sponsors Activating In Variety Of Ways For All-Star Game
ESPN360, MLB.com To Stream Century 21 Home Run Derby Live

JELD-WEN, PGA TOUR INK SIX-YEAR DEAL AROUND THE PLAYERS CHAMPIONSHIP

The PGA Tour today announced a six-year sponsorship deal with Jeld-Wen making the company a partner of The Players Championship beginning in ’07. In addition to TV advertising on The Golf Channel and NBC, Jeld-Wen will gain online, print and on-site recognition, the naming of a new clubhouse room at TPC Sawgrass and on-course hospitality privileges (PGA Tour).

Jeld-Wen, sponsor of the Champions Tour Jeld-Wen Tradition the last six years, joins UBS and PricewaterhouseCoopers as The Players’ only sponsors. Terms were not released, but Tournament Dir Brian Goin said that the cost should “‘easily’ reach into eight figures through the term of the contract” (SPORTSBUSINESS JOURNAL, 7/10 issue).

The Tour today also unveiled a new logo for the event that features the Tour's iconic swinging golfer in the event’s logo and shortens the event’s title to “The Players.” The word “Championship” will remain in the official name, but all appearances on TV and in ads will reference “The Players” (THE DAILY).


VONAGE BECOMES FIRST-EVER PRESENTING PARTNER OF WNBA ALL-STAR GAME

The WNBA today announced a deal with Vonage making the company the first-ever presenting partner of the WNBA All-Star Game, the official presenting partner of the All-Star MVP award and the game’s halftime ceremony, where the league will honor its All-Decade team. Vonage will also be the presenting sponsor of ESPN’s All-Star Game telecast (WNBA).


MLB ALL-STAR GAME ACTIVATION INCLUDES MOBILE ADS, SEAT CUSHIONS

By Terry Lefton, Editor-at-Large

MLB sponsors, including Chevrolet, Baby Ruth, Dick’s Sporting Goods and The Home Depot are activating in a variety of ways for tomorrow night’s All-Star Game in Pittsburgh. Following is a selection of sponsors’ activities.

  • Chevy and XM Satellite Radio will have street banners in the city.
  • An expanded MLB sponsor zone will include Holiday Inn, Baby Ruth and others.
  • MasterCard will again have a “Hit It Here” sign offering $1M.
  • Taco Bell’s “win a million” promotion will involve a hitting contest.
  • Century 21 will sponsor rollout signs for tonight’s Home Run Derby.
  • Chevy’s name will appear on seat cushions, with a DHL-logoed ticket holder.

Meanwhile, MLB, via Micro Target Media (MTM), is wrapping its brand around a bank of portable restrooms in the sponsor zone. Additionally, a VIP Trailer is wrapped to promote MLB Int’l, ESPN and Fox Sports.


ESPN360, MLB.COM TO STREAM CENTURY 21 HOME RUN DERBY

ESPN360 tonight will stream the Century 21 Home Run Derby live as part of MLB’s All-Star festivities. It will be a direct simulcast of ESPN’s 8:00pm ET telecast and will co-exist with MLB.com’s free video Webcast (THE DAILY).

ESPN tonight “will use a super-slow-motion camera that captures about 120 frames per second – about twice the frames” than normal slow-motion (USA TODAY, 7/10).

Following is the ratings trend for the Home Run Derby for the last five years on ESPN (THE DAILY):

CENTURY 21 HOME RUN DERBY RATINGS TREND
YEAR US AREA COV AREA SHARE HHs
‘05 4.1 4.9 8 4,439,000
‘04 4.7 5.7 9 5,041,000
‘03 3.5 4.3 7 3,755,000
‘02 5.0 6.1 10 5,268,000
‘01 4.2 5.2 9 4,261,000

Note: "COV AREA" = % of homes tuned into that program in that network's universe of subscribers.


TOP TEN BESTSELLING BASEBALL TITLES ON BARNES & NOBLES' WEB SITE

Six of the top-ten selling sports books on Barnes & Noble’s Web site in the sports & adventure category are on the topic of baseball and/or baseball players.  Below is a chart of the top-ten selling baseball books with their rank in the category (N.Y. TIMES, 7/10):

TITLE
OVERALL RANK IN SPORTS/ADVENTURE
1) “Game of Shadows”
1
2) “Clemente: The Passion and Grace of Baseball’s Last Hero”
2
3) “2006 ESPN Baseball Encyclopedia”
3
4) “Big Bam: The Life and Times of Babe Ruth”
5
5) “Baseball Prospectus 2006
7
6) “Moneyball: The Art of Winning an Unfair Game”
8
7) “Fantasyland: A Season on Baseball’s Lunatic Fringe”
20
8) “Baseball Between the Numbers”
23
9) “Built to Win”
25
10) "Now I Can Die In Peace"
26

BUZZER BEATERS….

Foot Locker shares today rose more than 10% due to a report that private equity firm Kohlberg Kravis Roberts & Co. “is the front-runner to acquire” the company (AP, 7/10).  At press time, Foot Locker shares were trading at $27.57, up 11% (THE DAILY).

New Fox promotions for the net’s NFL studio show “don’t shy away” from referencing former host James Brown’s move to CBS. Fox’ Terry Bradshaw says in the ads, “Who needs a host?” (USA TODAY, 7/10).

Ria Cortesio, who is the only female umpire in the minor leagues, will work one of the foul lines for the Home Run Derby. She also worked third base in yesterday’s Futures Game (USA TODAY, 7/10).


QUICK HITS….

“Bringing the [MLB] All-Star Game to Pittsburgh is like staging the Miss World contest in a leper colony” – The ORLANDO SENTINEL’s David Whitley, on the Pirates, who have the worst record in baseball, hosting the ’06 game (ORLANDO SENTINEL, 7/10).

“Americans who cared about it before still care about it. Those who didn’t, still don’t” – ESPN’s Skip Bayless, on the FIFA World Cup’s impact on the popularity of soccer in the U.S. (“Cold Pizza,” ESPN2, 7/10).

“He learned more from me than I learned from him” – White Sox manager Ozzie Guillen, on the instructor in his MLB-ordered sensitivity training (CHICAGO SUN-TIMES, 7/9).

“You see all these commercials and all these TV ads, and she’s never in there.  I keep telling her, if you go out and do something big, you’ll get there” – Tom Lincicome, father of LPGAer Brittany Lincicome, on her win Saturday over Michelle Wie in the HSBC Women’s Match Play Championship (N.Y. TIMES, 7/9).  Lincicome went on to win the tournament.


A LIGHTER BUZZ….

FSN’s telecasts of Marlins games include a pre-game segment featuring rookies Josh Johnson and Logan Kensing interviewing each other “as they visit sites and landmarks on the road.” FSN producer John Sulser:“They’re kind of like ‘Beavis & Butt-Head’ tour the country” (PALM BEACH POST, 7/9).


ARTICLES OF INTEREST….

The Baltimore SUN’s John Eisenberg writes, “Between the effects of globalization, big-money contracts and free-market principles (free agency), it’s hard now for any team or country to rule any sport for long” (Baltimore SUN).

In an Op/Ed in the N.Y. TIMES, author Alexander Stille writes the Italian soccer match-fixing scandal was born of “the competitor’s drive to win and the power of television to shape commerce and culture” (N.Y. TIMES).

Also:

  • Op/Ed in N.Y. TIMES calls on FIFA to use two referees.
  • Chicago provides example of NASCAR’s northern growth strategy.
  • A look at marketing to Hispanics via English-language media.
  • Profile of new ECHL Charlotte Checkers Owner Michael Kahn.

See the Articles of Interest section for more sports business-related links.


$TREET WATCH….

The following companies are scheduled to report earnings this week:

COMPANY DAY
Gannett Co. Wednesday
Tribune Co. Thursday
General Electric Friday

See $treet Wrap in Friday’s Closing Bell for highlights of the earnings reports.


IN OTHER NEWS….

With Nielsen Media Research this fall set to begin offering syndicated data on commercial ratings for the entire TV industry, ABC President of Sales & Marketing Mike Shaw said that his department is ready to “begin selling right now based on commercial ratings if any of the media agencies or advertisers want to begin buying that way.”  Commercial ratings, rather than program ratings, will likely “become the currency on which the media agencies make their upfront buys next May” (MEDIAWEEK.com, 7/10).


CHANNEL SURF….

The Discovery Science Channel will premiere “Baseball’s Secret Formula,” a look at using scientific methods to calculate a player’s true value to his team, at 9:00pm ET.

ESPN’s Joe Theismann will appear on CBS’ “Late Late Show” at 12:35am ET.

Heat G Dwyane Wade will appear on ABC’s “Jimmy Kimmel Live.” The show will feature a different athlete each night this week.


HEADLINERS….

 Here are tonight’s headline guests on the following talk shows:

“Late Show” Michael Douglas
“The Tonight Show” Kate Hudson
“Late Night” Darrell Hammond (r)
“The Late Late Show” Toni Collette
“Jimmy Kimmel Live” Ed Burns

CLOSING STAT: N.Y. TIMES BESTSELLING NONFICTION

The following presents bestselling nonfiction books for the week ending July 1 (N.Y. TIMES, 7/16).

N.Y. TIMES BESTSELLING NONFICTION
RK
HARDCOVER NONFICTION
1) MARLEY & ME, John Grogan (Morrow)
2) GODLESS, Ann Coulter (Crown Forum)
3) THE ONE PERCENT DOCTRINE, Ron Suskind (Simon & Schuster)
4) DISPATCHES FROM THE EDGE, Anderson Cooper (HarperCollins)
5) WISDOM OF OUR FATHERS, Tim Russert (Random House)
6) THE WORLD IS FLAT, Thomas L. Friedman (Farrar, Straus & Giroux)
7) MAYFLOWER, Nathaniel Philbrick (Viking)
8) FREAKONOMICS, Steven D. Levitt and Stephen J. Dubner (Morrow)
9) MYTHS, LIES, AND DOWNRIGHT STUPIDITY, John Stossel (Hyperion)
10) HEAT, Malcolm Gladwell (Litte, Brown)

NOTES & QUOTES FROM THIS DAY IN SBD HISTORY….

2003
"This is the last frontier for Nike. They cannot put their brand and `swoosh' into the mass channel, but Converse can" - Delafield Hambrecht analyst R.J. Jones, on Nike paying $305M to acquire Converse.

2002
"I want to take this opportunity to apologize to the fans. Given the health of the players, I had no choice" – MLB Commissioner Bud Selig, after the league’s All-Star Game at Miller Park in Milwaukee is called a 7-7 tie after 11 innings when both teams run out of pitchers.

1997
The Nevada State Athletic Commission revokes Mike Tyson’s boxing license and fines him $3M, the most stringent penalty it could impose, for biting the ear of Evander Holyfield during a fight at the MGM Grand.


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

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