MLBShop.com reports that the Cubs’ Kris Bryant topped the site’s most popular player list based on sales since the World Series. Rounding out the top five were three other Cubs, with Anthony Rizzo in second, Javier Baez in fourth and Kyle Schwarber. Breaking the sweep in the number three position was the Dodgers’ Clayton Kershaw. The average age of players overall on this list is 26-and-a-half – more than 1.5 years younger than any previous list’s mean age.
AEG announced a deal with HotelTonight that makes the app the official hotel-booking partner of LA Live and the LA Galaxy. The partnership, brokered by AEG Global Partnerships, marks HotelTonight’s first partnership with an MLS soccer team in the US in a first-time category for AEG.
UFC Fight Pass will stream the induction of former UFC heavyweight champion Maurice Smith to the 2017 UFC Hall of Fame class as a Pioneer. The ceremony will take place on Thursday, July 6 in Las Vegas.
BTN is crossing the Atlantic to cover the University of Michigan Football travel party this week as they hit to Rome. Content will be shared from the social media platforms of both Michigan and BTN, and follow the Wolverines through a week’s worth of educational opportunities, excursions, team-building exercises and football practice.
Roku is teaming with international sports broadcaster beIN Sports are making the network’s premium sports streaming service, beIN Sports Connect available on Roku®streaming players and Roku TVs in Canada. “Live sports is a key ingredient of TV programming, but still today not all sports can be watched live by consumers. With beIN Sports Connect Canadian Roku users can access a wide variety of live sports programming, whether you are a soccer, motor racing or martial arts fan,” said Ziba Kaboli-Gerbrands, director content acquisition at Roku.
Riot Games is looking to end relegation in the League of Legends NA LCS and implement franchising in team for the 2018 NA LCS Season, according to theScore esports. The article states that League of Legends teams that currently hold NA LCS spots, or that will hold them the split prior to franchising’s implementation, will not be guaranteed spots in the league for 2018.
Superdata reports that gaming video content audiences have now hit 665 million people. The company’s current study states that more people watch GVC than HBO, Netflix, ESPN and Hulu combined. Meanwhile, ads and direct consumer spending will push GVC earnings to $4.6 billion this year. Compared to the days of the stereotyped gamer, the current viewer base has a high female representation (46%) and high average income ($58K in the US).
The Immortals are adding Facebook Live to their toolkit, with the platform now joining Twitch for simulcasts of team content. The squad will leverage Restream.io, according to PVPLive, for video. “A big part of our mission here at Immortals is to be on the lookout for new ways to reach our fans with entertaining and engaging content,” said Immortals CEO Noah Whinston. “By adding Facebook to our cross-platform live streaming roster, we’re giving our fans even more, options than before to watch a match or interact with their favorite player on the go, anywhere and anytime.”
Stephens College in Columbia, Missouri, is making history as the first all-women’s school to announce a varsity esports program that will be supported with scholarships. According to ESPN, the program will begin in fall of 2017 with the team set to compete in the Tespa Collegiate Series for Overwatch, with the title selected, per the school’s site, because “of its diverse and strong female characters.”
Warriors/Trail Blazers on TNT at 10:30p.