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Volume 26 No. 182

People and Pop Culture

Finchem received $12,216,755 in compensation from the PGA Tour, including a bonus of over $10M
Finchem received $12,216,755 in compensation from the PGA Tour, including a bonus of over $10M
Finchem received $12,216,755 in compensation from the PGA Tour, including a bonus of over $10M

Former PGA Tour Commissioner TIM FINCHEM was paid more than $10M in "bonus and incentive money" in the year following his retirement in '16, according to '17 tax records cited by Roxanna Scott of GOLFWEEK. Finchem received $12,216,755 in "compensation from the PGA Tour," which included a bonus of $10,611,113. Finchem’s base salary was "reported as $906,646 and he received additional compensation" of $698,946. He also received $6.67M in "compensation from related organizations." Finchem in '16 was paid $4.47M, which included a base salary of $1.19M and bonus pay of $3M. He received another $4.7M that year from "related organizations." Current PGA Tour Commissioner JAY MONAHAN in '17received total compensation of $4.78M, which "included a base salary of $998,077 plus bonus and incentive pay" of $2.8M. There were 14 other PGA Tour staffers who made more than $1M in '17. The Tour that year paid $28.9M in "compensation to current officers, directors, trustees and key employees," compared to $20.5M in '16 (, 5/29).

"Going Off The Grid" is a weekly survey of sports execs and personalities offering their thoughts on a handful of pressing (and trivial) issues in sports and pop culture. This week, our panelists discuss DRAKE's antics during Raptors games and their favorite summer cocktail.

  • Spectra Senior VP/Finance Ken Wajda
    -- Loves and appreciates all genres of music.  
  • Major League Fishing Senior VP/Sponsorship & Media Sales Jeff Clachko
    -- Expects the USWNT to make a run in this summer's Women's World Cup.
  • cbdMD co-Founder & President Caryn Dunayer
    -- Gives two thumbs down to the "Game of Thrones" series finale.
  • CSM Sports & Entertainment GM Ashlee Huffman
    -- Enjoys going to Saturday morning farmer's markets and local boutiques.
Going Off The Grid
Best summer cocktail Agree or disagree with Drake's antics during Raptors games Favorite lawn game Best way to target a younger audience Would you trust a self-driving car?
Disagree, he's taken it a bit too far
Croquet, I have been playing since I was a kid
Social media for sure
I enjoy driving, but you can't stand in the way of progress

Ice cold beer in a frosted mug
Love his enthusiasm, but he needs to keep it off of the sideline
Wiffle ball
Custom content with product integrations that can be pushed out socially
I wouldn't have until I tried it -- and was blown away
Miami vice
Would have preferred he rapped it
Cornhole ... bring it!
Social all the way
Depends if the texting option is enabled or disabled
My various fresh margaritas specialties
It takes all kinds to make the world go round
Baseball -- its a lawn game at our house
Identify where the product or service intersects with their life
To a degree

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NBC Sports Chicago named former ESPN Dir of Content Integration ED MCGREGOR VP/Content Strategy. McGregor replaces KEVIN CROSS, who was promoted to Senior VP & GM in January (NBC Sports Chicago)....DAZN named HANNAH BIONDI as Dir of Original Content for North America. Biondi, who moves over from DAZN’s marketing group, will report to DAZN Exec VP/Content JAMIE HOROWITZ. She will spend most of her time on DAZN’s “40 Days” documentary series (John Ourand, THE DAILY).

EXECS: The Seattle XFL team named Sounders Dir of Corporate Partnership Sales CHRIS SAVIO Senior Dir of Corporate Partnerships and former Bears Media Relations Manager JIM CHRISTMAN Dir of Communications & Media Relations (THE DAILY)....The NWHL named CWHL co-Founder MANDY CRONIN GM of the Buffalo Beauts. The NWHL assumed control of the Beauts after Pegula Sports & Entertainment "relinquished control earlier this month" (, 5/28)....Live events and sports media entertainment company GF Sports named former Flyers COO SHAWN TILGER Senior Advisor (THE DAILY)....The Marlins named NBCUniversal Telemundo Enterprises VP/Community Affairs RAQUEL EGUSQUIZA Exec Dir of the Miami Marlins Foundation. She will report to Marlins CEO DEREK JETER (Marlins)....Hibbett Sports elected ANTHONY CRUDELE to serve as an independent Chair (, 5/29).

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Ready to make your next great hire? Or take the next step in your career? Connect with the industry’s top employers and job seekers on the Sports Business Career Link. For more information, contact Megi Beqiraj at 212-500-0705, or

LA 2028 Chair CASEY WASSERMAN, PGA Tour Commissioner JAY MONAHAN and MLB Commissioner ROB MANFRED are among the guests invited to Allen & Co.'s annual media conference in Sun Valley in July. Other sports figures on the guest list include Bills and Sabres co-Owners KIM and TERRY PEGULA, Activision Blizzard CEO BOBBY KOTICK and CBS' BILL COWHER. Among the other A-listers expected to attend are Apple CEO TIM COOK, Comcast Chair & CEO BRIAN ROBERTS, Disney Chair & CEO BOB IGER and Disney Direct-to-Consumer & Int'l Groups Chair KEVIN MAYER (, 5/29).

Romero is suing the company after testing positive for Ibutamoren in a February '16 drug test
Romero is suing the company after testing positive for Ibutamoren in a February '16 drug test
Romero is suing the company after testing positive for Ibutamoren in a February '16 drug test

BY UNANIMOUS DECISION: UFC fighter YOEL ROMERO "won a lawsuit based in New Jersey against Gold Star Performance Products," with total damages of $27.45M. The middleweight "sued the company after a failed drug test caused him to be suspended from competition" by USADA. Romero in February '16 was informed by USADA that he "tested positive for the banned substance Ibutamoren." He "immediately claimed innocence and pointed to a tainted supplement for the issue" (, 5/29).

THE GOOD STUFF: NHL Jets RW BLAKE WHEELER and his wife, SAM, are putting their support behind a CancerCare Manitoba Foundation fundraiser. The Wheelers "have lent their name and profile to Ride Inside: Come Wheel with the Wheelers, an indoor cycling challenge that raises funds in support of children and their families living with and beyond childhood cancer" (WINNIPEG SUN, 5/30)....Maple Leaf Sports & Entertainment auctioned off a "pair of tickets" to tonight's Warriors-Raptors NBA Finals Game 1 to "support an employee whose son was the victim of a hit and run." Four-year-old RADIUL CHOWDHURY, the son of MLSE employee RUHUL CHOWDHURY, was hit Sunday and is in "critical condition" (CP, 5/29).

GET TECHY: USWNT F MEGAN RAPINOE is profiled in the WALL STREET JOURNAL's "Technology Essentials" feature. She said, "Our team uses a lot of apps, including Fit For 90, a daily wellness check-in app. Every day you tell it your mood, how sore are you, what’s your stress level, how well you slept at night." Rapinoe: "I always travel with a Rains backpack that’s waterproof and has a sleek design with a flap on the top and not a lot of pockets." She also said her "newest, biggest, baddest, coolest piece of tech is my new Tesla Model 3" (, 5/29).

NAMES: The U.S. Department of Justice is "repaying" the NBA Kings the $13.4M that a former club official "stole to buy luxury beachfront homes" (AP, 5/29)....Thirty-seven former Ohio State athletes "have filed suit for abuse they say they suffered at the hands of former university athletic doctor RICHARD STRAUSS." The lawsuit in federal court in Ohio "seeks to hold the university responsible for years of sexual abuse they say Strauss inflicted upon them." Of the athletes, more than two dozen "played football in the 1980s and 1990s, while others were wrestlers and swimmers" (Cleveland PLAIN DEALER, 5/30)....Bears coach MATT NAGY will be the commencement speaker for his alma mater, the Univ. of Delaware, on Saturday (, 5/29)....Former Ravens coach BRIAN BILLICK and former player HALOTI NGATA were announced as inductees into the team's Ring of Honor, in '19 and '20, respectively (AP, 5/28)....Pro Football HOFers MEL BLOUNT and FRANCO HARRIS "will serve as honorary chairs of the Steelers Charity Walk and Steelers 5K race, respectively" (, 5/29)....Patriots coach BILL BELICHICK was the "honorary fan banner captain" for last night's Blues-Bruins Stanley Cup Final Game 2. Patriots Owner ROBERT KRAFT was "shown in a separate section of the Garden, proudly waving a yellow rally towel" (BOSTON GLOBE, 5/30).