FIFA made history yesterday when the org unveiled the 16 cities across three countries who would play host to matches in the 2026 World Cup with the event marking the first edition to feature 48 teams and three host countries, with 11 venues chosen in the United States, three in Mexico and two in Canada. Cities tapped to play host stateside include: New York/New Jersey (MetLife Stadium), Los Angeles (SoFi Stadium), Dallas (AT&T Stadium), Houston (NRG Stadium), Philadelphia (Lincoln Financial Field), Kansas City (Arrowhead Stadium), Boston (Gillette Stadium), San Francisco Bay Area (Levi’s Stadium), Miami (Hard Rock Stadium), Atlanta (Mercedes-Benz Stadium), Seattle (Lumen Field). The cities officially selected to host World Cup matches in Mexico and Canada are: Guadalajara (Estadio Akron), Monterrey (Estadio BBVA Bancomer), Mexico City (Estadio Azteca), Toronto (BMO Field) and Vancouver (BC Place).
“We congratulate the 16 FIFA World Cup Host Cities on their outstanding commitment and passion. Today is a historic day – for everyone in those cities and states, for FIFA, for Canada, the USA and Mexico who will put on the greatest show on Earth. We look forward to working together with them to deliver what will be an unprecedented FIFA World Cup and a game-changer as we strive to make football truly global,” said FIFA President Gianni Infantino.
Game 1 of the Stanley Cup Final on ABC and ESPN+ saw upticks over 2021 numbers, with the game snagging an average of 4.2 million viewers, up 161% over Game 1 a year ago. Among adults 18-49, the game was up 172%. Overall, the 2022 Stanley Cup Playoffs across ABC, ESPN and ESPN2 Is up 37% with 1.25 million overage viewers.
NBC Sports locked in its commentary team for its coverage of the second half of the 2022 NASCAR season, with racing starting June 26, on NBC and Peacock. Dale Earnhardt Jr. joins Jeff Burton, along with Steve Letarte as analysts alongside race announcer Rick Allen. Kyle Petty, Dale Jarrett and Brad Daugherty will anchor studio coverage with Snider serving as pre- and post-race host. Rutledge Wood, meanwhile, will now serve as a “CityView” reporter. Kim Coon joins as a pit reporter for select races in 2022 and will make her on-air debut at Road America. Marty Snider, Kelli Stavast, Dave Burns, Parker Kligerman and Dillon Welch all return to report from the pits alongside Coon throughout the season.
Jake “The Problem Child” Paul and Amanda “Real Deal” Serrano will headline in dual main events at Madison Square Garden on August 6 live on SHOWTIME PPV in an event presented by Most Valuable Promotions (MVP). “Amanda and Jake have become the most dynamic duo in professional boxing. As MVP athletes, they’ve both strived for greatness in their own respect and yet, continually work to build one another up not just as athletes but mentors and friends,” said MVP co-founder Nakisa Bidarian. “Watching these two grow immensely over the last year has been a privilege and to have them both headline as main events at the greatest arena in the world, is a special feat. We are grateful to Madison Square Garden and SHOWTIME for partnering with us on what will be a can’t miss night of boxing and a monumental accomplishment for the creator community.”
ESPN announced that author, athlete, and retired Army Command Sergeant Major Gretchen Evans will be honored with the Pat Tillman Award for Service presented by MassMutual at The 2022 ESPYS this year. The ceremony will air live on July 20 at 8p on ABC. The award is given to an individual with a strong connection to sports who has served others in a way that echoes the legacy of the former NFL player and U.S. Army Ranger. Evans founded Team UNBROKEN, an adaptive racing team of mostly veterans who have experienced life-altering injuries, illness, or traumas to compete in World’s Toughest Race: Eco-Challenge Fiji.
Speaking of awards, the NHL and the Tampa Bay Sports Commission announced the presenters who will join host Kenan Thompson for the 2022 NHL Awards on Tuesday at 7p on ESPN. Among the presenters will be Seattle Kraken fan Nadia Popovici, who rose to worldwide fame after pointing out a cancerous mole on the neck of Vancouver Canucks assistant equipment manager Red Hamilton. Popovici and Hamilton will reunite as part of the broadcast. Others include Calgary Flames assistant general manager and ALS survivor and advocate Chris Snow as well as his wife, Kelsie, and children, Cohen and Willa; Milton Academy (Mass.) hockey player Jake Thibeault, who was paralyzed by an injury in September 2021; and emergency backup goalie Thomas Hodges, who overcame blindness in one eye to play in a game for the Anaheim Ducks this season. Martin Lafleur, the son of the late Guy Lafleur, also will present an award. ESPN SportsCenter anchor Ashley Brewer, ESPN and NHL Network personality Kevin Weekes, and Sportsnet and Hockey Night in Canada personalities David Amber and Elliotte Friedman also will present.
NBC Sports has teed off on its coverage of the 2022 U.S. Open across NBC, USA Network and Peacock, with programming running through Sunday from The Country Club in Brookline, Mass. In total, NBC Sports will provide more than 45 hours of live championship coverage Thursday-Sunday – and a 100-plus hours of live coverage from Brookline including featured groups and featured holes coverage. Mike Tirico hosts. Meanwhile, Peacock, is adding more live golf event coverage with NBC Sports announcing that live event coverage available to simulstream on Peacock will include PGA TOUR and LPGA Tour events, including major championships, and more. Eligible subscribers of NBC Sports Next’s GolfPass will now receive a subscription to Peacock included within their GolfPass subscription.
ESPN is expanding its relationship with Peyton Manning and his Omaha Productions company. The alliance will now premiere a new lineup of original podcast shows, which will launch with six titles produced by Omaha Productions beginning June 20, including The VC Show (Vince Carter & Ros Gold-Onwude); Courtside Club (Rachel DeMita); Moxie Bets (Katie Mox); Always College Football (Greg McElroy); The Cam Heyward Show; and Soup with Coop (Cooper Manning).
CBS Sports’ all-women studio show We Need to Talk celebrates the 50th anniversary of Title IX with special episodes next week on June 19 at 1p on CBS and Paramount+, and on TJune 23 at 7p on CBS Sports Network. The June 19th show features interviews with author and vice chair of the Clinton Foundation Chelsea Clinton, Title IX lawyer and Olympic gold medalist Nancy Hogshead-Makar, Department of Education Assistant Secretary for Civil Rights Catherine Lhamon, and NWSL player and equal pay activist Ali Krieger. The June 23rd show airs on the official 50th anniversary of the passage of Title IX, and sees guests that include UConn basketball player Azzi Fudd, Sierra Canyon basketball standout Juju Watkins and track champion Alysia Montaño.
The history of African American western cowboy and rodeo culture will be explored in Omitted: The Black Cowboy, a new, one-hour ESPN “SC Featured” special debuting Sunday at 2p on ESPN2. The program, airing as part of ESPN’s recognition of Juneteenth, and the company’s “Black History Always” initiative, will spotlight on the influence and accomplishments that were often uncovered by the media of the 20th century, including the story is Bill Pickett, a farmhand born into slavery, known for his cattle-catching tricks and stunts, who became the first African American cowboy inducted into the National Rodeo Cowboy Hall of Fame.
Apple TV+ renewed drama series Swagger” for a second season. The show is inspired by NBA player Kevin Durant’s experiences in the world of youth basketball. “I’m excited to share more of the beautifully complicated lives of these incredible characters,” said creator, showrunner, director and executive producer Reggie Rock Bythewood. “In season two, they will search and discover what it means to be a champion on and off the court, and the basketball playing will continue to be groundbreaking. We are grateful to Apple TV+ for the platform.”
The musical special, Uforia Concierto de Campeones presentado por T-Mobile, will air on Univision and TUDN on June 24 at 7p, kicking off the TUDN Festival de Campeones multi-day celebration of the Liga MX. The celebration features performances by Latin superstars: Maluma, Los Ángeles Azules, Guaynaa, CNCO, and Los Dos de la S, at The Kia Forum. Hosting this summer’s celebration is Karina Banda and Julián Gil.
All Sports Television Network inked a deal with The Basketball League and will now broadcast the league’s regular season, playoff and all-star games beginning with the 2022 season. “We are excited about introducing TBL to the American public,” stated Roger Neal Smith, President of ALL SPORTS. “Not only does the league provide world class, affordable entertainment to the communities in which teams are located, the league and teams also offer support through engagement in school appearances, youth camps, clinics, and non-profit organizations. The American public needs to know about The Basketball League and the great things that they do.”
LAST DAY TO ENTER
THE TOP WOMEN IN MEDIA AWARDS
Today is the last day to ender for this year’s Top Women in Media Awards.
Check out the site to see all the amazing categories, from DEI Dynamos to Marketing Trailblazers.
SPONSORSHIP & PROMOTION
Amid new that NHL revenues will hit record revenues of at least $5.2 billion, the NHL revealed a pair of new deals. The first sees the league and PepsiCo lock in a multiyear extension of their North American partnership. PepsiCo will maintain exclusive NHL and NHLPA North American rights in the carbonated soft drinks, water, energy drinks and savory snack food categories. PepsiCo’s wide portfolio of brands includes Pepsi, MTN DEW, Aquafina, Rockstar, Lay’s, Tostitos, Ruffles, Doritos, Cheetos, Rold Gold and Miss Vickie’s. Through the partnership, PepsiCo will continue innovative activation and increased exclusivity around promotional opportunities.
Meanwhile, Caterpillar also struck a multiyear global sponsorship with the NHL, naming Caterpillar the Official Heavy Equipment and Industrial Power Sponsor of the NHL. As part of the sponsorship, Caterpillar and its dealers may identify opportunities to assist the NHL by providing behind-the-scenes products and services to support NHL games and special events. “We are excited to welcome Caterpillar to the NHL family to engage our passionate fans and Caterpillar’s customers around the globe,” said Max Paulsen, NHL Senior Director, Business Development. “Caterpillar is one of the top brands in the world and aligns with the many attributes our great sport embodies. We look forward to creating compelling and unique initiatives that will delight new and existing fans while providing Caterpillar extensive brand visibility at our tentpole events and across NHL media platforms.”
Corona Premier hits the U.S. Open Championship with the #CoronaPremierBeachClub sweepstakes. Throughout the U.S. Open, Corona Premier will turn bunkers into private beaches. “Corona Premier is excited to be back at the U.S. Open Championship, one of golf’s biggest moments for every fan,” said Alex Schultz, vice president of brand marketing, Corona. “This year, our aim is to connect with casual golfers in authentic and unexpected ways. We believe that golf shouldn’t be so serious. It should be an enjoyable experience for anyone and everyone. That’s why we’re looking forward to turning a trip to the “beach” into a refreshingly rewarding moment for golf fans everywhere.”
Excel Sports Management acquired creative and experiential marketing agency Game Seven. Game Seven will bolster Excel’s Brand Marketing division and complement its existing strategic verticals to provide a full suite of brand solutions across the sports and entertainment marketing spectrum.
DIGITAL, DATA & TECH
ESPN launched Fifty/50 World, described as “an immersive digital destination that amplifies ESPN’s content around the powerful month championing the 50th Anniversary of Title IX.” The initiative runs through June 30, and offers content watch/listen parties, guest speakers, and virtual games throughout the two-week span with content that includes: Julie Foudy’s Laughter Permitted Podcast, Fifty50 x Special Olympics discussion featuring Loretta Claiborne and Novie Craven, The Ultimate Fighter: Julianna Peña vs. Amanda Nunes, and much more.
The BIG3 and The Game Day announced a content partnership for the league’s fifth season. The partnership will kick-off the first week of BIG3’s season with the twice-weekly social-first series Day in the Life as well as the debut of a new season-long competition format named the BIG3 4-Point Battle.
The XFL announced a partnership with BreakAway Data. The league will utilize BreakAway’s full suite of products and advisory services, including its athlete data software (BreakAway mobile app), player biomechanics assessments (Field Labs) and its athlete management system (Stacks), to enhance the XFL’s player development and technology strategy. The XFL will also use BreakAway’s technologies at its upcoming showcase series.
Bleacher Report and House of Highlights are reporting gains in May. Bleacher report nabbed 1.79 billion video views during the period, with 183 million engagements, up 32% and 6% respectively over April numbers. House of Highlights notched its best month ever, with 2.64 billion video views overall.
FuboTV will unveil pick’em games this weekend – becoming the first company to launch the free-to-play sports contests directly integrated into the live TV streaming experience. Pick’em players in select markets will have access to Fubo Sportsbook by scanning a QR code to place real-money wagers aligned with their picks.
IMG ARENA signed a multi-year agreement with DFB GmbH & Co. KG, the marketing and commercial arm of the German Football Association DFB. The partnership covers streaming and fastpath data rights for all 63 matches in the DFB-Pokal, commencing with the 2022/23 season of the tournament.
Honda announced the expansion of its role as the official automaker of Team Liquid, landing League of Legends and Academy team’s naming sponsorship rights. The naming rights deal – as Team Liquid Honda – sees the team debut its new name and its all-new jerseys at the 2022 LCS Summer Split, which begins June 18. Elements also include an all-new ‘Honda Lounge’ within the Team Liquid North America HQ. “Growing Honda’s relationship with Team Liquid Honda and their passionate fanbase is an important part of our evolution in gaming as we work to broaden our engagement with gamers at all levels,” said Phil Hruska, media department head at American Honda Motor Co., Inc. “We plan to build on the great relationship we have established with Team Liquid Honda by engaging more with young fans who are gamers themselves and work to deepen those relationships with the Honda brand.”
Rogue cemented a partnership with Razer to become the official peripheral partner for Rogue’s LEC League of Legends team, as well as its academy squad AGO Rogue, providing the teams with headsets, keyboards, mice and mouse mats.
Playfly Sports announced that CSL Esports will expand its foundation to create a “more robust esports focused division within the company called Playfly Esports.” “This expansion represents a significant shift in the industry that will not only help fuel the rapid expansion of esports but will also establish a platform for gaming companies to monetize their brands through dynamic partnerships,” said Rob Johnson, CEO of Playfly Esports. “By tapping into the massive reach of Playfly’s extensive offerings, Playfly Esports is in a unique position to elevate the organizations that will shape the future of esports by providing those brands with significant opportunities to reach a growing audience. As financials from publicly traded esports companies continue to reveal staggering losses, Playfly Esports aims to be a bridge to traditional partners and the gaming industry.”
INDUSTRY & ROSTER MOVES
Velocity Global named Nzinga “Zing” Shaw as a global advisor. Shaw served as the first-ever chief diversity officer for the NBA, working with the Atlanta Hawks. She has led the global DEI functions for major brands such as Starbucks and Edelman and has held additional HR roles with the NFL and YES Network.
VSiN, The Sports Betting Network announced that Len Mead will join the VSiN team as General Manager. “Len has excelled at creating original content and growing audience across all platforms throughout his career, and we’re thrilled to add his expertise to our leadership team,” said Brian Musburger, founder and CEO of VSiN. “Not only does Len bring a wealth of media experience from his prior roles at ESPN, NBC Sports, NESN and others, but he also brings sports betting industry knowledge from his time as head of content for PointsBet. We believe this combination will help VSiN deliver its premium sports betting content to even more bettors, on more platforms, in new ways.”
The American Ultimate Disc League and Legends entered into a long-term strategic partnership that will accelerate the growth of the AUDL. As part of this partnership, Legends has aligned its interests with the owners of the AUDL by making a minority investment in the league.
MEASUREMENT & DATA CONFERENCE
IN CASE YOU MISSED US
If you weren’t able to make it, you can purchase M&D On Demand.
Use the code ONDEMAND22 at checkout
FIND OUT MORE
ON THIS DAY in
1976: The National Basketball Association announces plans to merge with the American Basketball Association.
IN THE KNOW: Name the only player to lose three U.S. Opens in a playoff. (Email email@example.com with your answer and be sure to include your name, company and city).
Answer to Our Last Sports Trivia Question: What is the name of the boa constrictor that accompanied pro wrestler Jake “The Snake” Roberts? Answer: Damien. Kudos: Matthew Willence-ITN Networks/NY; Michael Ritz-Lenox Advisors/NY; Gary Brooks-INSP Network/Charlotte; Adam DePaul-WOFL FOX 35/Orlando; Greg Conner-WWE/Stamford; Louis Lewow-FITE/Atlanta; Andy Pittman-TAMU/College Station; Annelise Spangler-Wavemaker Global/LA; Sean Devlin-Netflix/LA; David Westberg-SAG•AFTRA Credit Union/Burbank; Tom Moore-Kalt Productions/LA
Develop and lead press campaigns for STARZ Original Series. Develop and supervise the implementation of goals, strategies, tactics and timelines to create PR plans for assigned original programming and network marketing/branding efforts. 10+ years of experience in a related role within a corporate environment. Full info HERE (7/3)
ENTERTAINMENT & MEDIA SEARCH
Highly rated and fastest growing cable news channel is seeking Booking Producers for primetime. Primarily responsible for securing on-air guests for interviews. Desired candidates must have previously worked as a booking producer (preferably in news). Must be a news junkie and ultimate team player. Full info HERE (7/3)
MANAGER, TELEVISION BUSINESS & LEGAL AFFAIRS
ENTERTAINMENT & MEDIA SEARCH
Successful independent developer, producer and distributor of feature films and television programming seeking Business & Legal Affairs Manager for Television group. Desired candidates must have previous experience in business or legal affairs department at major studio, production company, or entertainment law firm. JD degree strongly preferred. Full info HERE (7/3)
PRODUCTION COORDINATOR >>
GO TO TEAM/CHARLESTON, SC: Daily servicing of clients and crews all across the US. Individuals are required to schedule camera crews, field production personnel, negotiate rates, source equipment nationally, book travel ETC. Hard working team players wanted. Experience in media/and entertainment industry is a plus. On Call/Overtime component. Full info HERE (6/29)
MANAGER, OPERATIONS AND BUSINESS ANALYSIS >>
AMERICAN PUBLIC MEDIA GROUP/ST. PAUL, MN, LOS ANGELES, CA OR REMOTE: We’re looking for a forward-thinking and meticulously organized Manager, Operations and Business Analysis to join APM Studios, American Public Media’s podcast division. This role will be responsible for a variety of complex analytical, business and project management tasks to support the operation and monetization of APM Studios shows. Full info HERE (6/29)
SR. DIRECTOR, PODCAST OPERATIONS
NY, ATLANTA, DALLAS, REMOTE
Develop, implement, monitor and lead podcast strategy and daily operations for podcasts. Play a critical role in structuring and shaping the operational framework, brand and business strategy. 8-10 years of audio and/or digital media experience with 3-5 years of meaningful experience in podcast development, operations, and monetization. Full info HERE (6/27)
SOCIAL MEDIA MANAGER
Early morning Sports/Entertainment talk show, call time at 5:30am. Develop, design, plan, and execute TikTok content for the show. Work closely with the entire staff including talent and producers. Create reactionary content to storylines that arise during the live window of the show. Must be available to start 7/11/22. Full info HERE (6/27)
MANAGER, MULTI-PLATFORM RESEARCH & ANALYTICS >>
FUSE MEDIA/GLENDALE, HYBRID: Create, analyze, and distribute regular daily, weekly and monthly reporting covering TV, digital (TVOD, AVOD, SVOD) and social media. Validate the accuracy of data in reports, communicate issues/anomalies to designated support teams and monitor the status of outstanding issues. 3+ years of research and analytics experience. Full info HERE (6/27)
MEDIA SALES PLANNER >>
FUSE MEDIA/NYC, HYBRID: Create and manage national sales proposals. Monitor on-air schedules on a daily basis. Prepare post analysis for clients. Resolve contract discrepancies. Obtain, organize and analyze research and competitive information. 2-4 years of experience in a media sales company, or advertising agency preferred. Full info HERE (6/27)
AD OPERATIONS MANAGER >>
FUSE MEDIA/GLENDALE, HYBRID: Work with a cross functional team spanning sales, business intelligence, and digital operations to traffic direct sales and programmatic digital advertising campaigns to ensure client expectations are exceeded. Manage & analyze live direct sold and programmatic campaign effectiveness. 3+ yrs exp in Ad Operations in the digital advertising industry. Full info HERE (6/27)
MANAGER, PUBLIC RELATIONS >>
OUTKICK/NYC, HYBRID: Self-starter skilled in sports media & pop culture; strong project management skills & ability to work independently. Develop & execute press strategies & secure impactful media placements. Results-oriented strategic approach w/solid understanding of sports world; execute creative PR strategies to elevate emerging brand. 4-6 years of PR exp. req. Full info HERE (6/23)
SPECIALIST, INTEGRATED MARKETING
Partner with all lines of business to create marketing solutions for clients, spanning all platforms, including web, mobile, app, social, linear TV, OTT, CTV, podcast & out-of-home. The Specialist will become a product expert, assisting in development & execution of marketing campaigns & creation/maintenance of ad sales marketing materials. Full info HERE (6/20)
MEDIA SALES PLANNER >>
FUSE MEDIA/NY: Develop customized plans and presentations for Ad Sales clients. This is a great opportunity for someone looking to join a fast-growing business with future growth opportunities. Full info HERE (6/20)
SALES DEVELOPMENT REPRESENTATIVE >>
MEDIAOCEAN/NYC, CHICAGO: Find and screen potential customers and have a strong understanding of the sales process, excelling at researching leads, starting new relationships, and setting our sales team up for success. Have the ability to showcase our offerings in a compelling way. 1-3 years of professional work experience preferred. Full info HERE (6/19)
ACCOUNT MANAGER FOR CLIENT SERVICES – DEAL MAKER >>
MEDIAOCEAN/NYC/EAST COAST: Execute a coordinated account plan for driving growth and adoption of Mediaocean solutions. Maintain a regular cadence of on-site visits to consult end users, identify and address business needs and challenges. Act as a trusted advisor and partner with customer contacts. 3+ years of experience in client services or consulting. Full info HERE (6/19)
SUPERVISOR, MEDIA PLANNING >>
RAIN the GROWTH AGENCY/REMOTE: Oversee the strategic development of multi-channel media plans that drive business growth for our clients. Develop strong client relationships by being passionate and curious about clients’ Utilize proprietary agency technology, platforms and attribution models for maximum campaign performance. Prepare & pitch media strategies. Full info HERE (6/18)
ASSOCIATE DIRECTOR, MEDIA PLANNING >>
RAIN the GROWTH AGENCY/REMOTE: Learn, utilize and participate in development of proprietary agency technology, platforms and attribution models for campaign performance. Ensure overall accuracy with client budgets, investments, and execution of campaigns. Lead the analysis for clients, demonstrating the effectiveness of planning, optimization and management of media. Full info HERE (6/18)
MANAGER, ADVANCED TV & ATTRIBUTION ANALYTICS
Oversees research efforts to target & optimize campaigns across all platforms. Min of 3+ yrs of exp. in advertising effectiveness research; strong knowledge of television & digital measurement & analytics. Preferably, exp. w/television data sets spanning both traditional (Nielsen) & emerging (Vizio, iSpot, VideoAmp, comScore, Tivo, Samba) sources. Full info HERE (6/17)
STUDIO LEAD >>
TWO CIRCLES/LOS ANGELES: Deliver graphic & short-form video assets as part of season-long paid media campaigns across social media & digital platforms. Develop a range of creative assets, from static, video and motion design, using established brand guidelines. On the pulse of popular content & current trends. Min of 3-5 yrs professional exp working in sport and w/brands. Full info HERE (6/17)
LEAD CONSULTANT, OTT >>
TWO CIRCLES/NYC, LOS ANGELES: Management Consultant with experience of, or interest in, DTC media, or broader TMT experience. Growth-oriented individual capable of excelling in a fast-moving environment. Proven ability to build trusted relationships with senior clients and a hands-on approach to client delivery. Experience working in either a sports league or ownership group. Full info HERE (6/17)
AUDIENCE DEVELOPMENT LEAD >>
TWO CIRCLES/NYC: Bridge the gap between subject matter experts within paid media, organic social strategy, CRM, performance creative design and insights; manage up to executive level stakeholders. Knowledge & proven success in building global marketing campaigns & strong data and insights understanding. Min of 5 yrs of professional exp. in digital marketing. Full info HERE (6/17)