Van Wagner Sports & Entertainment inked Jersey Mike’s Subs to take on the title sponsorship of the 2018 Jersey Mike’s Jamaica Classic, an annual pre-season college basketball tournament held in Montego Bay. The new NCAA basketball MTE tournament for college teams and their fans will run Nov. 16-18 with eight teams contending. “From our ongoing involvement with the NCAA, we know college basketball fans are sub sandwich fans,” said Rich Hope, Chief Marketing Officer, Jersey Mike’s Franchise Systems, Inc. “Title sponsorship of the 2018 Jersey Mike’s Jamaica Classic allows us to extend the season so we can continue to engage with our customers during the tournament.”
For the second straight year, NBA Digital and NextVR will offer fans free on-demand virtual reality game highlights of the 2018 NBA Finals presented by YouTube. NextVR also announced the public availability of a new high-resolution format that will deliver the “most realistic and immersive VR experience yet.” On the day following each game of the Finals, fans will be able to access highlights in the NBA Finals channel within the NextVR app. “Improving fidelity and realism is critical for the success of virtual reality media. This upgraded format adds detail, sharpness and enhanced 3D depth to our broadcasts, greatly increasing realism and overall sense of presence,” said David Cole, NextVR co-founder and CEO. “While all users will see an immediate improvement, this only scratches the surface of the capabilities of this format and our technology platform. More advanced headsets slated to ship in the future will take even greater advantage of this new VR broadcast technology.”
Yahoo Sports debuts The Rush, today, a new show built for mobile with host Jared Quay, who will break down the most important headlines in sports and throughout the show’s season. Show will run in weekday mornings and available to view on the Yahoo Sports app or on Yahoo’s sports page.
Blizzard announced that the first-ever Overwatch League Grand Finals have sold out, with play running July 27–28 at Barclays Center. More than 20,000 tickets were purchased to mark the largest esports event ever slated at Barclays Center. Meanwhile, voting for the Overwatch League All-Star Game Powered by Intel is now open for business to pit the most popular players in the Atlantic and Pacific divisions into the event. Voting will conclude at the end of Stage 4 on June 17. Starters will be announced the week of June 18, and reserves the week after. The All-Star Game and related festivities are scheduled for August 25-26 at Blizzard Arena Los Angeles.
Speaking of OWL, the Los Angeles Valiant announced the formation of a social change partnership with the You Can Play Project, a group dedicated to ensuring safety and inclusion for all who participate in all sports – including LGBTQ+ players, coaches, and fans with the Valiant serving as the first esports organization, franchise, or team to join the social change movement. As part of the partnership, You Can Play will provide diversity and inclusion training to LA Valiant players, coaches, and organization staff. The team will film a PSA to promote awareness of the You Can Play initiative among the esports community and You Can Play will have a presence at select Valiant events for fans to interact with and learn more about the organization and their initiatives.
In sponsorship news, Chipotle Mexican Grill announced a partnership with TSM to serve as the team’s first-ever TSM Fortnite House sponsor. The TSM Fortnite House includes Myth – team captain and the second biggest Fortnite streamer on Twitch – Daequan, Camills , and Hamlinz. This partnership will feature multiple integrations, streaming exposure and other activations.
Golden Knights/Capitals moves back to NBC at 8p.