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Source: Nielsen Live+SD Dates. Oct 10-16


Good morning. It’s Tuesday October 25, and this is your first early morning Sports briefing.

The NBA named New Era as the official authentic headwear provider of the league via an expanded global licensing partnership. The deal spans the NBA, WNBA and NBA Development League. The brand will exclusively produce caps for marquee NBA events, including the NBA Draft presented by State Farm, Conference Finals and NBA Finals. As part of the expanded partnership, New Era launched the 59FIFTY fitted headwear collection for the start of the 2016-17 season, and will unveil lifestyle-inspired products during NBA All-Star 2017 in New Orleans.  Additionally, New Era will produce all headwear silhouettes with current team marks, including the 9FIFTY Snapback, internationally.

Meanwhile, the league also locked in a multi-year extension with Kumho Tire in the US, Canada and Korea. The expanded partnership also includes increased promotional efforts, which provide customers and dealers access to unique experiences throughout the season, including at marquee NBA and NBA D-League events.


Let’s open with some talent news. NBC Sports Group is putting Mike Tirico in the saddle for his first-ever horse racing assignment, announcing that he will host NBC’s primetime coverage of the 2016 Breeders’ Cup World Championships from Santa Anita Park on Nov. 5. Since joining NBC Sports Group in July, Tirico has served as a host of the 2016 Rio Olympics, Football Night in America, The Open, and The Ryder Cup, and handled play-by-play for Notre Dame Football.

Tonight’s opening of the NBA regular season on TNT will see a special tribute to sideline reporter Craig Sager and his on-going fight against leukemia. As part of the initiative, the SagerStrong Foundation will partner with NikeiD for a customized limited edition SagerStrong NIKE Air Force 1 sneakers  designed by Craig Sager  that will be offered via online auction with a portion of the proceeds benefiting the SagerStrong Foundation. Overall, 100 pairs of the SagerStrong NIKE Air Force 1 will be made  complete with paisley print panels, a seersucker tongue tab and multi-colored laces. In addition, two separate Sager-inspired t-shirts have been created to benefit the organization. Turner Sports will also present a special Open Court: Sports and Society roundtable show as a part of TNT’s NBA Opening Night pregame coverage starting at 5p.

Telemundo Deportes announced that its Titulares y Mas Coors Light franchise is expanding to Saturdays and Sundays at 11p starting Nov. 5. The show will also see a new host, naming Rosina Grosso as co-host, joining Miguel Gurwitz, Karim Mendiburu and Ana Jurka.

FOX Sports hits the Audi 2016 MLS Cup Playoffs with an opening act of Sporting KC/Sounders on Thursday at 10p on FS1. Meanwhile, the 2016 MLS Cup will be FOX Sports’ first presentation of the championship event, with the game set to air on the FOX broadcast network on Dec. 10 at 7:30p, marking the first time since 2008 that the MLS Cup will air live on English-language network television.

Will you make the cut? Hurry up and skedaddle to get your late submissions in for the Cynopsis Sports Leaderboard, honoring the best social media campaigns of the past year. Get ‘em in! To recap, last year’s big winners included Buffalo Wild Wings, ESPN/Applebee’s; FedEx/EA Sports; Golf Channel, the Mountain West Conference, the NBA, NHL, PGA Tour, Showtime Sports, Turner Sports, US Soccer and WWE. Don’t miss you chance to be recognized and get your entry in now by clicking here.

NBC saw SNF’s Seahawks/Cardinals match notch a 11.6/20 overnight rating in Nielsen overnight numbers to take the night in primetime. Top markets: Seattle 47.9/67; Phoenix 31.7/49; Portland 24.5/38; Albuquerque 17.6/28; Las Vegas 17.2/26.

CBS Sports locked in its game selections for the SEC on CBS doubleheader on Nov. 5 with the opening game pitting Florida/Arkansas at 3:30p, while Alabama/LSU battle at 8p.

Meanwhile, FOX Sports unveiled its own assignments for week 10 of the college football schedule, showcasing UCLA/Colorado on FS1 on Nov. 3, while Nov. 5 sees Texas/Texas Tech on FS1 at noon. At 3:30p, FOX carries TCU/Baylor while FS1 showcases Oregon State/Stanford.

ESPN/ABC unveiled plans for “what is expected to be the largest Special Olympics World Winter Games in the history” with over 2,600 Special Olympics athletes and coaches from 106 nations set to compete from March 18-25 next year. The Opening Ceremony will run on ABC on March 18, followed by Games coverage on ABC the next day with a program running each weeknight on ESPN2 from March 20-24and a wrap up program following the Games, recapping the competitions and Closing Ceremony.  ESPN’s coverage will also be carried in at least 190 countries and territories around the world on ESPN television and streaming networks.




Join us as we celebrate the most innovative executives in digital media who excel in content, marketing, advertising, and social media as they take their place on Cynopsis Digital’s “It List.” For anyone who works in the digital media community, these are the people you want to talk to, listen to, and rub shoulders with. Come be a part of this very special luncheon. Check out the winners from Crackle, Google, Horizon Media and more and register today.


Mountain Dew renewed its partnership with NBA All-Star Russell Westbrook through the 2018-19 NBA season. Also joining the lineup this year will be Kyrie Irving with Westbrook and Irving set to “celebrate the lifestyle and culture of the game in unexpected ways, including an exciting and larger-than-life activation around tip off” as part of the brand’s 19-man roster. Tipping off the season will be 40-foot-tall glowing basketballs installations in LA, Miami and Cleveland.

Hockey Fights Cancer is back for the NHL and NHLPA through Nov. 18, anchored by the color lavender throughout the campaign. The two organizations are partnering with five national cancer organizations to help raise awareness: Alex’s Lemonade Stand Foundation, The Leukemia & Lymphoma Society, The Movember Foundation, Pancreatic Cancer Action Network, and St. Jude Children’s Research Hospital. All 30 NHL Member Clubs are supporting the initiative by designating one home game as the official Hockey Fights Cancer in-arena awareness night, featuring unique programming and partnerships with local cancer organizations.

The US Ski and Snowboard Association and Utah Olympic Legacy Foundation inked USANA Health Sciences as the title sponsor of the 2017 FIS Nordic Junior and U23 World Ski Championships from Jan. 28-Feb. 5. “As a long-standing partner of the USSA, Women’s Ski Jumping USA and Utah Olympic Legacy Foundation, we are able to provide the support these athletes need to perform at their best,” said USANA Chief Communications Officer Dan Macuga. “We are looking forward to being a part of the Junior World Championships as it returns to the U.S. and wish all of the athletes well as they prepare for their respective events.”

The International Mixed Martial Arts Federation officially submitted its application to SportAccord to gain official recognition as the international governing body for MMA. "Recognition by SportAccord would mark an important milestone in the development of MMA,” said IMMAF President Kerrith Brown. “Not only would recognition enable IMMAF to bid for MMA to become an Olympic Sport in future, but more crucially it would better enable sport development, the progression of regulation and the implementation of safety measures down to the grassroots level, worldwide.”

Roush Fenway Racing penned a multi-year renewal agreement for driver Ryan Reed to continue to pilot the No. 16 Lilly Diabetes Ford Mustang in the NASCAR XFINITY Series. Reed was diagnosed with Type 1 diabetes five years ago and qualified for the 2016 inaugural XFINITY Series Chase and scored his first victory in the series last season at Daytona.


NBA League Pass will hit the new season with the introduction of NBA Mobile View. The new feature will appear as an additional streaming option starting today as part of the free preview week. The new offering was launched by installing new cameras in all 29 NBA arenas with each game having a designated producer specifically for NBA Mobile View.

Raycom Sports announced an exclusive partnership with collegiate sports content management and licensing company XOS Digital Inc. XOS will now provide archiving, enforcement, and content representation services for the entire Raycom Sports portfolio.

CBS Sports’ NBA Analysts and league veterans Raja Bell and Rip Hamilton are hitting CBSSports.com with their series NBA Crossover with Rip and Raja. The pair will join host Nick Kostos to debate topics and run live on Thursdays at 3p.


Major League Gaming hits the holidays with a major play in Las Vegas, announcing MLG Las Vegas from Dec. 16-18. The event will serve as a festival and fan experience that takes place at the Mandalay Bay Resort & Casino. The event will play host to the first North American Regional of the Call of Duty World League as well as serve as an Overwatch Invitational. In addition, the festivities will include End Game, a celebration featuring interactive experiences, surprise musical performances and opportunities for content creators throughout the weekend.

Meanwhile, Blizzard announced competitive changes to Heroes of the Storm for 2017, configuring the Heroes Global Championship 2017 with four regional divisions that will play two regular seasons in spring and summer, with two international tournaments in May and November as a replacement to the title’s tournament circuit. Competition is broken into four major regions (North America, Europe, China and Korea) and four minor regions (Latin America, Australia/New Zealand, Taiwan and Southeast Asia). Blizzard also set up a secondary league that is open to up-and-coming squads seeking to qualify for their region’s premier league, dubbed the HGC Open Division.


Cubs/Indians on FOX at 8p.



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ON THIS DAY in 1978: The Padres’ Gaylord Perry becomes the first pitcher to win the Cy Young Award in both leagues.

In The Know: With which American League team did Gaylord Perry win a Cy Young? (Email Chris-Sports@cynopsis.com with your answer and be sure to include your name, company and city.)

Answer to Our Last Sports Trivia Question: What is Michael Jordan’s middle name? Answer: Jeffrey. Kudos: Andrew Feingold-Fox News/NY; Michael Brown-Lagardere Sports/NY: Michael Dittelman-Dedicated Sports Marketing/NY; Mike Lavoie-The CW Network/NY; Joe Schreiber- 3 Penny Films/Bethesda; Chris Schwartz-International Speedway Corporation/Charlotte; Willy Gibson-WTG Consulting/Columbus; Christian Matthews-Washington DC/Washington Redskins; Kevin R. Morris-Omeda, Inc./Northbrook; Steve Johnson-SJConnects/Chicago; Tom Doherty-Starcom Media/Chicago; Jeremy Bowman-ESPN/Chicago; Karl Hoium-Fargo-Moorhead RedHawks/Fargo-Moorhead; Charles Kundrat-Continuum Media/Greenwood Village; Judie Henninger-Valentine Productions/Santa Monica; Tom Moore-Kalt Productions/LA; David Westberg-SAG-AFTRA Federal Credit Union/Burbank.

Later — Chris
Chris Pursell for Cynopsis | Sports @VegasandVine


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