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Volume 25 No. 107

People and Pop Culture

Fanatics Founder & Exec Chair MICHAEL RUBIN is purchasing a penthouse in downtown Manhattan for a price in the low to mid-$40M range. When it closes, the property will be the "priciest home ever sold below 14th Street in New York." The interior is close to 8,000 square feet, with "five bedrooms." It also has a "landscaped roof terrace with a 27-foot private outdoor pool, a private elevator, a screening room, a library and four fireplaces" (WALL STREET JOURNAL, 7/20).

QB MOVES: Patriots QB TOM BRADY and wife GISELE BUNDCHEN sold their N.Y. condo after dropping the asking price from $17.25M to $13.95M. The couple purchased the 3,310-square-foot, "three-bedroom, 3.5 bathroom" condo for $11.7M in '14 (, 7/13)....Chargers QB PHILIP RIVERS placed his eight acres of land in the Rancho del Lago neighborhood of Rancho Santa Fe, Calif., on the market for $5.299M. The property has "panoramic views stretching from La Jolla to a nearby reservoir" (, 7/18).

BUYERS & SELLERS: Cubs RF JASON HEYWARD paid more than $6.93M for a condo in Chicago. The 5,200-square-foot unit is located at the "super-luxurious No. 9 Walton" (, 7/13)....Free agent LB NAVORRO BOWMAN is selling his San Jose home for $4.253M. The 5,959-square-foot estate has "five bedrooms and five baths." In the rear of the home, the "memorabilia room, with built-in bar and space for game tables, also opens to the loggia and overlooks the pool." Outdoors, the "fenced pool with built-in hot tub abuts a cabana/guest house with full kitchen and bath" (, 7/17)....Former NFLer T.J. HOUSHMANDZADEH sold his home in Newport Beach, Calif., for $4.085M. The Mediterranean-style house has "French and pocketing doors that open to outdoor living and dining rooms." An "infinity-edge swimming pool, a spa, a cabana with barbecue island and a sports court are among the entertainment-oriented features on the one-third-acre of grounds" (, 7/16)....Former MLBer CORY LUEBKE is selling his home in San Diego for $2.2M. The home has "folding windows and doors" that "bring the outdoors into the airy floor plan, which holds four bedrooms and three bathrooms in 2,600 square feet" (, 7/17).

Pisarra and her husband Scott support both their daughters in sports back home in N.J.

Wasserman Senior VP/Research & Insights SHELLEY PISARRA has been working remote from Dallas this week as she and her family visit some longtime friends in their former home state of Texas. Pisarra, who now lives in Summit, N.J., and commutes to Wasserman’s N.Y. office, has been wearing many hats through the week when it comes to the day job. “One unique thing about us is that because we work with properties, brands and talent, this week I get to work on evaluation for RICKIE FOWLER, who’s obviously over at the Open Championship, but we’ve got some big meetings next week," Pisarra said. "Then I’m also working on something for our Bacardi clients and also the Clippers. It’s so fun to have the ability to change gears like that and I’m lucky to get to bounce between those things."

FAMILY OUTING: This week I’ve been in Texas battling 105-degree heat and I’m also on kid duty while doing some work. We’re visiting our closest friends here and our daughters, KELSEY and AUDREY, have been hanging out at the pool. At night we’ll grill out and hang out. We've traveled the world with these friends and we'll hopefully plan our next big adventure together this weekend. That’s what we tend to do when visiting each other. When we’re home in N.Y. over the weekend we’re glued to Yankees games, we get to the ballpark as much as we can. We’re here through Saturday hanging out. Friday night we’ll smoke a brisket and have a big party. Then my daughters, who are 11 and 8, don’t know that I’m actually surprising them with TAYLOR SWIFT tickets at MetLife Stadium this weekend. They’ll be surprised because it's usually sports tickets. So we’ll fly back from Dallas to N.Y. and then I’ll take them over to the concert on Sunday. That will be the cap to the weekend, and while my husband SCOTT is lobbying hard to find a girlfriend to go with me instead of him I think he’s going to secretly love it.

SUMMER IN THE BIG APPLE.: In N.Y, we spend a ton of time in and around sports. Both my daughters are super active. If we’re not at a dance competition we may be at taekwondo. We are living this life where we’re kind of shuttling them around over the weekends but we’re having a ball. In the summer we hit the pool and then we also have a big ‘ol porch at our house where we usually end the night with a handful of neighbors and a nice bottle of wine. We do as much family time as possible because my husband and I both travel so much during the week.

IN THE MEANTIME: Back in Summit a favorite restaurant is Ruth’s Chris Steak House, where we’ll sneak out for a date night occasionally. We also like this craft beer spot called Trap Rock Brewery. They know us enough that it works out for a nice afternoon where we can even bring the kids and our dog Griswold. I’m also known for a quick beverage in the city before I hit Penn Station. I’m an NBA podcast fanatic when it comes to free agency, so these days I’m listening to a lot of BILL SIMMONS. TV-wise we just finished “BILLIONS” and I was in and out of London last week where I watched all of “GOLIATH” with BILLY BOB THORNTON on Amazon Prime. Then I just started “SHARP OBJECTS” with AMY ADAMS on HBO. It’s kind of creepy and dark and I was home alone, so I wasn’t sure about it but now I know I have to watch more.  

MLS has hired ANGELA ALFANO as Dir of Corporate Communications, where she will oversee business and non-sports communications for MLS and SUM. Alfano joins the league from Tough Mudder, where she oversaw global communications for the last two years. Previously, she spent three years at the NFL as a Manager of Corporate Communications, as well as working in corporate communications with the Redskins. Alfano started at MLS on Monday (Ian Thomas, Staff Writer).

EXECS: The Alliance of American Football named DAVID COHEN Head of Player Operations. Cohen founded Major League Business in February '18 and served five years as the General Counsel of the Buccaneers (AAFL)....The CWHL named JAYNA HEFFORD interim Commissioner and Head of Hockey Operations & Player Development (, 7/19)....Penn State promoted the following: LYNN HOLLERAN to Deputy AD/Administration; JEMAL GRIFFIN to Assistant AD & Chief of Staff for Football; and KRIS PETERSEN to Assistant AD/Strategic Communications (PSU)....Auburn named Univ. of Georgia Assistant AD/Development EVIN BECK Associate AD/External Relations (, 7/19)....The Univ. of Illinois promoted Senior Associate AD & Senior Woman Administrator MARIA WOODS to Exec Senior Associate AD and named SARA BURTON Senior Associate AD (Illinois)....Indiana Univ. named former MLBer SCOTT ROLEN Dir of Baseball Player Development (, 7/18)....Stetson Univ. named MADELINE MASSA Assistant AD/Marketing & Promotions (Stetson).

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Burckle (c) is the latest U.S. Olympian to come forward with allegations of sexual harassment by a coach

In California, Scott Reid reports former U.S. Olympic swimmer CAROLINE BURCKLE in '11 "began receiving a series of sexually graphic text messages" from U.S. national team coaches SEAN HUTCHISON and BOB BOWMAN. The messages were "sent from a phone that belonged to Bowman, the longtime coach" of medal-winning swimmer MICHAEL PHELPS. Burckle's revelation comes as USA Swimming "finds itself in the midst of a sexual abuse scandal that has drawn Congressional attention" (ORANGE COUNTY REGISTER, 7/20).

NBA NAMES: Rockets G CHRIS PAUL hosted the Nickelodeon Kids’ Sports Choice Awards on Thursday, and teammates G GERALD GREEN and F P.J. TUCKER joined him on stage. The event airs Friday on Nickelodeon (HOUSTON CHRONICLE, 7/20)....LEBRON JAMES’ Uninterrupted hosted an ESPYs after-party with guests including Warriors Fs KEVIN DURANT and DRAYMOND GREEN, Paul, DRAKE, 2 CHAINZ, FLOYD MAYWEATHER and JAMIE FOXX (, 7/19).

NAMES: Sources said that U.S. Rep. DEVIN NUNES (R-Calif.) "used political donations to pay for nearly $15,000 in tickets" to Celtics games as well as "winery tours and lavish trips to Las Vegas." Nunes "used the money from his political action committee last year on three occasions to buy tickets" (, 7/19)....Championship club Aston Villa announced NSWE, a company partly owned by Bucks co-Owner WES EDENS, has acquired a stake in the club (Aston Villa)....Overwatch League Commissioner NATE NANZER was named to Fortune's Forty Under 40 list. Nanzer is "on the front lines of the world of e-sports." Nanzer has "helped the league secure 12 permanent franchises around the world" by "integrating existing e-sports organizations with traditional sports owners." Nanzer "hopes to take" OWL to continental Europe and the Middle East next season (, 7/19)....Eagles C JASON KELCE will play saxophone on stage at the Mann Center "alongside the Philadelphia Orchestra" on Tuesday (, 7/19)....ESPN’s JALEN ROSE “got secretly married” to fellow ESPN host MOLLY QERIM (, 7/19).

Professional sports training camps are no longer the sleepy practice sessions that attracted only the most dedicated fans. Today, teams attract thousands of spectators to open practice sessions, scrimmages, and autograph sessions hoping for a more close-up look at their favorite players. We look at how teams are building business around these training camp experiences.

Publishing Date: August 6

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