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Volume 26 No. 4

People and Pop Culture

Sports Business Journal/Daily is pleased to announce our annual list of 40 execs who will be recognized for excellence and innovation in their careers, all before the age of 40. All 40 execs will be featured in the March 25 issue of Sports Business Journal, where the stories of their career paths and successes will be shared. They also will be honored at our annual Forty Under 40 gala, April 4, at the Monarch Beach Resort in Dana Point, Calif.

NBA Senior VP/Direct To Consumer Christopher Benyarko
Octagon Senior VP/Media Rights Consulting Daniel Cohen
The Montag Group Senior VP/Talent Gideon Cohen
SeatGeek co-Founder Russ D'Souza
MLS Senior VP/Properties & Events Camilo Durana
NBPA Deputy General Counsel David Foster
CAA Sports Co-Head of Basketball Marketing Lloyd Frischer
ESPN VP & Exec Producer of ESPN Films & Original Content Libby Geist
Mastercard North America Head of Sponsorships Michael Goldstein
49ers/Elevate President & CEO Al Guido
NFL VP/Media Strategy & Business Development Amanda Herald
Wasserman VP/Brands Broderick Hicks
Genesco Sports Enterprises VP/Corporate Consulting Bill Hudock
Boston College AD Martin Jarmond
Legends Senior Project Manager Shelby Jordan
Intel Corp. Global Senior Dir of Olympics, Sports & New Technologies Stephanie Joukoff
Dodgers President of Dodgers Business Enterprise Tucker Kain
DraftKings CRO & co-Founder Matt Kalish
JPMorgan Chase Exec Dir & Head of Private Bank Sports Finance Group Brian Kantarian
YouTube Head of Sports Partnerships Tim Katz
U.S. Bank VP/Head of Sponsorships & Experiential Marketing Chris Lee
MS&E Senior VP/Strategic Initiatives & Monumental Sports Network GM Zach Leonsis
Facebook North America Live Sports Programming Lead Devi Mahadevia
Golf Channel Exec VP/Strategy Will McIntosh
Luker on Trends Senior Partner & Exec Dir of ESPN Sports Poll Chad Menefee
Overwatch League Commissioner Nate Nanzer (Blizzard Entertainment)
HBO Exec VP Peter Nelson
IMG College VP & Associate General Counsel Ashley Page
Harris Blitzer Sports & Entertainment CRO Jake Reynolds
Riot Games co-Head of Esports Whalen Rozelle
Eventellect co-Founder Patrick Ryan
Proskauer Partner Frank Saviano
Learfield Chief Strategy & Development Officer Rob Schneider
Relevent CEO Daniel Sillman
American Gaming Association Senior VP/Public Affairs Sara Slane
Bank of America Senior VP/Global Sponsorship Marketing Joseph Smith
Evolution Media Principal Fabian Stechel
Cowboys VP/Corporate Partnerships Sales & Service Eric Sudol
MLB Senior VP/League Economics & Operations Morgan Sword
Univ. of West Virginia Deputy AD & COO Keli Zinn
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40 U 40
The documentary is narrated by Liev Schrieber, who also narrates the "Hard Knocks" series
Photo: HBO

HBO's "THE MANY LIVES OF NICK BUONICONTI" debuts tonight at 10:00pm ET, and the documentary on the Pro Football HOFer offers an "absorbing glimpse into a remarkable life packed with enormous professional success but devastating personal loss," according to Barry Jackson of the MIAMI HERALD. HBO "neatly fits a life with so many layers into a documentary that's thoroughly worth your time." There is "crisp chronicling of all the successes," and later, a "post-NFL life as a practicing attorney, an agent, a broadcaster and president of US Tobacco Company" during the late '70s and early '80s. However, the documentary also details the "tragic paralysis" of his son, Miami Project To Cure Paralysis President MARC BUONICONTI, and the "CTE symptoms that made Nick Buoniconti, in his words, 'half the man I used to be.'" Nick Buoniconti, 78, was "healthy enough to conduct the interview from his home and sounds generally cogent throughout." The film is narrated by LIEV SCHREIBER (, 2/11).

COMPELLING WATCH:'s Peter King wrote the documentary's producer BENTLEY WEINER does a "superb job of not being judgmental about the game, but rather letting family members describe it." Marc Buonconti and his brother, NICK JR., are "powerful presences." Weiner is an "excellent deep-dive story-teller," and she "finds out every last detail." King: "I thought, 'No way is this going to hold me for 74 minutes.' But it did. ... It makes for compelling TV" (, 2/11). In Madison, Scott Fishman wrote viewers will "get a subtle sense" of Nick Buoniconti's "struggles neurologically, losing train of thought in some parts and by his speech." Although Weiner "clarifies that the production is not a CTE documentary, with the main focus on his present condition, it's a pivotal part that ends the film in a powerful way" (, 2/8). In N.Y., Ken Davidoff noted Nick Buoniconti "succeeded as a baseball agent as well," and viewers should "watch for testimony from Buoniconti Hall of Fame client ANDRE DAWSON" (, 2/8). Also in N.Y., Bob Raissman wrote the film "provides plenty of evidence" that Nick Buoniconti is a Pro Football HOF "lifer" (, 1/27).

Ilitch Holdings named Amway Global Dir of Corporate Communications & Global Brand SHAWN PLATT VP/Corporate Communications. He replaces DOUG KUIPER, who left in July for a job with the Michigan Economic Development Corp. Kuiper reported directly to President & CEO CHRISTOPHER ILITCH (THE DAILY)....Edmonton Eskimos President & CEO LEN RHODES "will be leaving" on Feb. 20 after he and the CFL team mutually agreed to part ways. Rhodes joined the organization in '11 (EDMONTON SUN, 2/12)....Providence College promoted AD BOB DRISCOLL to VP (Providence)....The Univ. of Missouri named Eastern Michigan Associate AD/Compliance MATTHEW JAKOBSZE to the same role (Mizzou)....Troy Deputy AD/Internal Operations and Senior Woman Administrator SANDY ATKINS has begun her first year of a four-year term on the NCAA Softball Committee (Troy).

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Maggette did not work last night's game against the T'Wolves following the accusation

Former NBAer COREY MAGETTE, who has served as a Clippers analyst on FS West this season, has been "accused of raping a woman during his time at Duke 20 years ago." Maggette "denied the accusation through a spokesman." Magette's roles with the Clippers include pre- and postgame analyst and color commentator. He did not work last night's game against the T'Wolves ( 2/11).

AWARDS & HONORS: Women In Sports & Events (WISE) today announced the five recipients of its “Women of Distinction” awards that will be presented at its annual luncheon in N.Y. on June 19. The winners are IOC VP ANITA DEFRANTZ, P&G Dir of Olympic & Sports Marketing JANET FLETCHER, Octagon Worldwide Exec VP/Global CMO LISA MURRAY, NBPA Exec Dir MICHELE ROBERTS and CBS Sports Director & Producer SUZANNE SMITH (Ben Fischer, THE DAILY).

NAMES: A new lawsuit alleges that Orange County-based water polo coach BAHRAM HOJREH "continued to coach and allegedly sexually assaulted underage athletes for months" after USA Water Polo "received complaints of alleged sexual assaults by the coach’s club team." The lawsuit brought by a female water polo player and filed in Orange County Superior Court yesterday alleges that USA Water Polo, Int'l Water Polo Club and officials for the regional association "did not thoroughly investigate the allegations or report them to the proper authorities" (, 2/11)....MLB Network tonight “will premiere a documentary” on Red Sox manager ALEX CORA at 9:00pm ET. Titled, "THE MAKING OF A CHAMPION," it is “part of the MLB Network Presents series” and “includes an extensive interview” with SI's TOM VERDUCCI at Fenway Park (BOSTON GLOBE, 2/12)....GARTH BROOKS will “spend just over a week participating” in Spring Training with the Pirates, as the country music artist reported yesterday with pitchers and catchers. Brooks is “briefly returning to the sport to mark the 20th anniversary of the Garth Brooks Teammates for Kids Foundation,” which has raised more than $100M for children's charities (AP, 2/11).

IN MEMORY: The funeral for former Vanderbilt AD DAVID WILLIAMS will be held Friday in Nashville, and services will be “open to the public and held at Temple Church.” Visitation is from 11:00am-1:00pm CT, followed by services at 1:15pm (Nashville TENNESSEAN, 2/12).