A commercial for the Bulls filmed last week on the floor of
the Chicago Mercantile Exchange is a key part of their new ad
campaign, according to George Lazarus of the CHICAGO TRIBUNE.
The spot features Jack Sandner, Chair of the Merc, surrounded by
traders and ends with one "trader holding up two tickets to a
Bulls game." The spot is part of the Bulls' new TV campaign by
DiMeo Rosen Partners that runs with the tagline, "The Most
Valuable Ticket in Town." The campaign will have three different
ads and premier in November. This was only the second time in
recent history that filming has been done on the floor of the
Mercantile Exchange, and Lazarus calls it "a pretty clever idea,
especially with the trading bit." Bernie DiMeo, agency
President: "We want to treat the ticket as an object of mystical
quality" (CHICAGO TRIBUNE, 10/11).
CHECK PLEASE: Key Bank of Washington is offering their
customers and Sonic fans checks bearing the team's logo. The
exclusive deal with the team also includes a Sonics Visa card
with no annual fee. Deborah Smith, Senior VP/Marketing for Key
Bank, said the amount invested to "secure the agreement was
private," but she added the bank is looking for 7,000 new credit
card sales as a result of upcoming promotions. Key Bank holds
the naming rights to the Sonics' remodeled home (Graham Fysy,
TACOMA NEWS TRIBUNE, 10/12).
TOTAL ACCESS: The Raptors's ticket for their November 3
debut -- which resembles a backstage pass -- is "destined to
become a collectors item" (TORONTO STAR, 10/12).
CAN'T MAKE THE CHAMPS HAPPY: After criticizing their new
uniforms last week, Rockets players "were slightly more reserved"
when asked about the new floor at The Summit. The floor, with a
"rocket blasting off" from the lower sideline towards center
court, and other new aspects, was designed by the Rockets in
conjunction with the NBA's Creative Services Department. Sam
Cassell: "I don't know what's going on in the middle of the
court. But, hey, it's not my living room." Ex-CBA player Chucky
Brown said it wasn't the worst floor he's seen: "We were in
Harrisburg (PA) for a game, and there was dirt right underneath
the floor. The Rodeo had been in town the night before, and they
just put the court down on top of the dirt" (HOUSTON CHRONICLE,
Converse unveiled their new collegiate "head-to-toe"
programs with Kentucky and Arkansas. The programs, developed in
conjunction with Converse coaches Rick Pitino and Nolan
Richardson, are called Kentucky Cons Blue and Arkansas Muscle and
offer coordinating footwear and uniforms. The teams debut their
new looks on February 11, when the Wildcats meet the Razorbacks
in a CBS game prior to the NBA All-Star Game. Converse President
Mickey Bell said the programs were developed "to offer two
preeminent basketball programs a unique look that would set them
apart on the court." Cons Blue was created specifically for
Kentucky and incorporates "denim access" into both the uniform
and shoe design. The Cons Blue shoe has a suggested retail price
of $75.00, and authentic and replica versions of apparel will be
available in retail outlets. A 30-second ad featuring Pitino
will debut February 11 and run through mid-March. The "Muscle"
program for Arkansas includes a swirl which is incorporated into
the footwear and apparel and will also be available (Converse).
Arkansas was outfitted by Apex last year. A Converse
spokesperson told THE DAILY that plans exist to introduce another
new line of uniforms and footwear for both schools for the '96-97
season. The "head-to-toe" program is another entry into college
athletics for Converse. Their "Voltage" line will debut later
this month at Georgia, Nebraska, Minnesota, Oklahoma, South
Carolina, and New Mexico. That look has a zig-zag graphic
designed in school colors (THE DAILY).
John Daly has signed a seven-year deal with United Sports
Technologies, Inc., a Fort Worth-based producer of golf clubs,
according to the FT. WORTH STAR-TELEGRAM. Although figures were
not disclosed, UST VP/Marketing Richard George said the deal is
the "most lucrative contract among PGA Tour competitors." UST is
the one of the largest suppliers of graphite shafts to Wilson
Sports Goods, and Daly has been playing with UST shafts since '92
(FT. WORTH STAR-TELEGRAM, 10/12).
MIAMI SLICE? Don Johnson, who co-stars with Kevin Costner
in the upcoming golf movie "Tin Cup," has reportedly "demanded
that he wear Como Sport apparel for the film," according to GOLF
WORLD. Cobra Golf, who manufactures Como, is said to have
shipped a "large order of the apparel to Johnson on the movie
set" (GOLF WORLD, 10/6 issue).
NEWS & NOTES: HTM, parent company of Head Golf, has been
sold to Equity Partners, a group "controlled by the Rothschild
family and the Saatchi brothers." Johan Eliasch, "credited with
turning adidas around" has been named CEO. The "fate" of Head
Golf and top execs "remain uncertain," and Head Golf VP John
Hoeflich, who had tried to purchase the golf division with two
other Head Golf execs, said, "Everything is on hold until we find
out what the owners want to do" (GOLF WORLD, 10/6 issue)....The
Titleholders golf tourney will return to the LPGA Tour next year
as The Sprint Titleholders Championship. It will be held at the
LPGA International in Daytona Beach, FL, and will replace the
Sprint Championships (AD AGE ONLINE, 10/12)....Walters Golf
Management was unsuccessful in trying to lure a Senior PGA Tour
event to St. Louis (ST. LOUIS POST-DISPATCH, 10/9).
Logo changes are still taking place in the minor leagues,
one year into the 1-in-3-year rule, the directive by the MLBP and
the National Association of Professional Baseball Leagues which
limits the number of times a team could revise its artwork to
once every three years, except in the case of relocation of new
parent club. For '96, 27 minor league baseball teams have
requested logo or nickname changes (USA TODAY'S BASEBALL WEEKLY,
10/10 issue)....Hockey on Wheels in Santa Monica, CA is looking
for sponsors of its '96 national roller hockey tour starting next
spring. Sponsorships include on-site signage, product promotion
and demonstration opportunities and range from $5,000-60,000.
Team Marketing Systems of Venice, CA, handles (AD AGE, 10/9
issue)....NASCAR Racing ranks at No. 8 on INTERACTIVE WEEK's Top
20 CD-ROMS (INTERACTIVE WEEK, 10/9 issue)....Stores in the
Chicago area that sell Northwestern merchandise have "been
deluged with calls from across the nation" since the football
team's surprising start (N.Y. TIMES, 10/12).
The NHL and the NHLPA announced the worldwide launch of NHL
PowerPlay, a jointly licensed consumer magazine. The
publication, called the "official magazine of the NHL players and
teams," is set to debut November 1 and will be available through
newsstands, subscription, select book clubs, specialty offers and
in certain arenas. Projected readership is 1.5 million. The
magazine will have player profiles, interactive features, trivia,
and other info on the league on and off the ice. Each issue will
also include a "one-on-one" interaction section with the players
in a "Be a Player" special, a continuation of the NHLPA's "Be A
Player" magazine. Published by Quarton Group, NHL PowerPlay will
be offered on a quarterly basis (NHL/NHLPA).
Although Advanta has offered to sponsor the U.S. Indoor
Men's tennis tournament at the CoreStates Spectrum for the next
ten years and IMG has agreed to run the event, the Philadelphia
Indoor Tennis Corp. "is resisting," according to the PHILADELPHIA
DAILY NEWS. Tournament Dir Tom Gowen said the group "is
concerned about area youth tennis programs continuing to receive
proceeds from the tournament" and that the money Advanta is
offering "isn't enough." Another condition "bothering"
tournament officials is IMG's involvement. Gowen: "Without the
condition that IMG run (the tournament), the deal would have been
done a long time ago" (Bill Fleischman, PHILADELPHIA DAILY NEWS,
NASCAR has granted an exclusive license to Saint Andrews
Golf Corp. to own, operate, and manage a series of NASCAR
speedparks nationwide. The speedparks will operate either as
part of a multi-sport themed "All-American SportsPark" or as an
independent racing facility. Saint Andrews has also entered into
exclusive deals with MLB and Callaway Golf for the "All-American
SportsPark." The first facility is scheduled to open late summer
'96 in Irvine, CA, with a site in Las Vegas shortly thereafter.
NASCAR hopes to have eight other facilities open by the end of
'97. Helping the project is Harris Production Services, which
will be overall producer of the Las Vegas project, Ellerbe Becket
Inc., which will assist in the design and development of the
parks, and EME Entertainment Design, which will oversee the
created and conceptual designs (NASCAR).