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Volume 26 No. 177
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Robert Kraft Auctions Super Bowl LI Ring As Part Of All In Challenge

Patriots Owner Robert Kraft has "put his Super Bowl LI championship ring up for bid to benefit the All In Challenge." The winner also will "receive a personal visit with Kraft in his Gillette Stadium office, with the team sending its private plane to bring to town the new owner of the ring if he or she is not within driving distance." The auction opened at $75,000 yesterday at 6:00pm ET and by midnight, the "bidding had reached $330,000." The auction is "scheduled to extend over the next 11 days" (ESPN.com, 5/10). Meanwhile, the Patriots and Massachusetts Military Support Foundation are "teaming up to package their 2 millionth meal to help those directly affected by the coronavirus pandemic" (ESPN.com, 5/10). Kraft and Fanatics Chair & CEO Michael Rubin appeared on CNN’s “The Situation Room” last night to discuss the All In Challenge, and Kraft said the Super Bowl ring “was a good thing to auction off." Rubin noted the challenge has “now raised over $38 million in less than a month.” When he started to think about starting the challenge, Rubin said Kraft told him, "Michael, I want to do everything I can to help” (“The Situation Room,” CNN, 5/10).

HELPING SMALL BUSINESSES: The Sounders have awarded more than $200,000 to 143 individuals and 17 small businesses in the "first grant cycle" of the club's Sounders Relief Fund. Sounders Owner Adrian Hanauer and his mother "initiated the fund with $500,000." Hanauer: "The $500,000 my family seeded, and hopefully we're able to raise considerably more than that. But let's be realistic. It's a drop in the bucket to what is ultimately going to be required to get people back on solid footing" (SEATTLE TIMES, 5/10). 

BASEBALL INITIATIVES: Former White Sox LF Ron Kittle on Friday helped his old club during its blood drive at Guaranteed Rate Field. The drive was "part of a partnership with the American Red Cross and Anheuser-Busch to utilize arenas and stadiums nationwide as temporary blood-drive centers." The White Sox said that "there were 100 appointments" for the event (CHICAGO TRIBUNE, 5/9)....Angels manager Joe Maddon, through his Respect 90 Foundation, is "making a $120,000 donation for COVID-19 relief efforts, with a $30,000 grant going to the WomenShelter of Long Beach" (ORANGE COUNTY REGISTER, 5/10)....Pirates bench coach Don Kelly on Friday "volunteered with Pirates Charities and Silver Star Meats to distribute" more than 500 meals to homeless people across Pittsburgh (TRIBLIVE.com, 5/8).

MORE GOOD STUFF: Penguins D Kris Letang has made an "unspecified donation intended to provide meals to the Students and Families Food Relief Fund and the Knead Community Cafe, allowing both organizations to provide meals during the covid-19 pandemic" (TRIBLIVE.com, 5/8)....The Pistons beginning today are partnering with Detroit-area McDonald’s locations to "help first responders" with "Motor City Frontline Meals." The venture, which will last the rest of the month, offers "free breakfast at all participating McDonald's restaurants in the city of Detroit to all healthcare workers, Detroit Police Department officers, Detroit Fire Department firefighters, paramedics and EMTs, and Detroit Department of Transportation bus drivers" (DETROIT NEWS, 5/9)....Pacers C Myles Turner has made "a $50,000 donation to the COVID-19 Response fund at Texas Health HEB," where his father, David, was treated for coronavirus. David Turner was released on March 29 after a five-day stay (Ft. Worth STAR-TELEGRAM, 5/11).