In Illinois, Orrin Schwarz notes as part of the jersey sponsorship deal between Quaker Oats and the MLS Fire, Quaker will provide the players "with breakfasts and snacks to help them fuel their performance throughout the season." One key partnership highlight "includes being the title sponsor of the Chicago Fire Juniors." In addition, Toyota Park will now "feature the 'Quaker Corner,' a seating section dedicated Fire supporters, where they can show their passion and love for the game" (Illinois DAILY HERALD, 1/18).
OUT OF DATE: In Sydney, Quayle & Hanlon note for a "long while, Roger Federer and Rafael Nadal have turned up to press conferences wearing their own, personalised Nike T-shirts." Novak Djokovic now has a personalized T-shirt as well, but there appeared to be a problem the shirt, which "had his nickname, Nole, emblazoned across the front." It included the phrase "Established 1966." However, that is the year apparel line Sergio Tacchini "was brought to life, not the 24-year-old Serb" (SYDNEY MORNING HERALD, 1/18).
SPLIT DECISION? Comcast SportsNet Chicago's "Chicago Tribune" yesterday included a discussion about a report that Magic C and adidas endorser Dwight Howard may turn down a trade to the Bulls due to the presence of fellow adidas endorser G Derrick Rose. The Chicago Tribune's Bob Foltman said, “Whether or not adidas is pulling the strings or how much effect they have there, it was an interesting theory. … How much weight that holds, who knows." Comcast SportsNet Chicago’s David Kaplan: “If a shoe company is getting involved to that degree, that’s a joke.” Foltman: “Would it surprise you?” Kaplan: “No. Those shoe companies are telling kids what colleges to go to” ("Chicago Tribune," Comcast SportsNet Chicago, 1/17).
SWIMMING ENDORSEMENT: Gold Medal-winning U.S. swimmer Janet Evans has signed an endorsement deal with swim brand Arena. Evans, who is attempting a comeback after retiring following the '96 Atlanta Games, qualified for the U.S. Olympic trials in the 400 and 800-meter freestyle events (THE DAILY).