06/24/22: The NHL sealed a deal with Sweet to produce NFTs

Medias First Morning Read
Friday June 24, 2022

The National Hockey League Players’ Association, the NHL, the NHL Alumni Association and non-fungible token (NFT) distribution platform Sweet cooked up a new multiyear partnership naming Sweet the Official NFT Digital Collectibles Marketplace and an Official NFT partner of the NHL, NHLPA and NHLAA. With a planned launch at the start of the 2022-23 NHL season, the stand-alone NHL platform custom-built for this program by Sweet will showcase current and historic moments as well as iconic elements of the game in the form of non-fungible tokens. Also on the roadmap are specialty packs, gamified collection experiences, 3D interactive trophy rooms where users can display their collections, as well as dynamic NFTs designed to change based on current team data, and more.

“The NHL Alumni Association is excited to work with the NHL, the NHLPA, and Sweet to bring these digital hockey products to fans,” said Glenn Healy, Executive Director of the NHLAA. “Sweet has done an incredible job of building the innovative platform and products that will bring NHL NFT Digital Collectibles to life. This collaboration has been worth the wait as fans will be able to access their favorite hockey history moments while we do our part to honor the past”.

PROGRAMMING

The Boston Athletic Association inked deals with ESPN and WCVB Channel 5 to serve as the exclusive national and local broadcast partners, respectively, for the Boston Marathon beginning in 2023. WCVB will also provide exclusive year-round coverage for all B.A.A. events including the B.A.A. 5K, B.A.A. 10K, and B.A.A. Half Marathon. ESPN will broadcast the 127th Boston Marathon, scheduled to take place on April 17, 2023, on its flagship channel from 8:30a-1p. “The Boston Marathon is one of the world’s most recognizable and best-known sporting events and we’re proud to be able to bring it to ESPN viewers for years to come,” said Burke Magnus, President, Programming and Original Content, for ESPN. “We look forward to working with the B.A.A. and WCVB to present the stories and athletic achievements of this classic race.”

Dolly Parton takes center stage in NBC Sports’ tease ahead of its NASCAR Cup Series season opener at Nashville Superspeedway this Sunday at 5p on NBC and Peacock. Parton appears and narrates the opening segment that sets the stage for the 2022 NASCAR season on NBC, which begins in Nashville. “Dolly was gracious enough to spend time with our production team appearing on-camera and voicing this special opening tease for Sunday’s race. Who better to welcome NASCAR fans from across the country than Tennessee native and country music superstar Dolly Parton,” said Jeff Behnke, Vice President, Motorsports Production, NBC Sports.

The MLS All-Star Game is hitting DC, as the league announced that Audi Field will play host to the 2023 event on July 19. The 2023 MLS All-Star Game presented by Target will be presented live to fans around the world through the MLS streaming service as part of Major League Soccer’s 10-year partnership with Apple and will be the culmination of a week-long series of events throughout the city., including community initiatives, concerts, parties, the MLS All-Star Skills Challenge presented by AT&T 5G and more.

Showtime Sports and Most Valuable Promotions announced that Jake “The Problem Child” Paul will take on undefeated pro boxer Tommy “TNT” Fury, while Amanda “Real Deal” Serrano will defend her Unified Featherweight World Title against Brenda “La Pumita” Carabajal in co- main events at Madison Square Garden on Aug. 6, live on Showtime PPV.

CBS Sports announced its plans for the Concacaf W Championship, highlighted by on-site studio and announce coverage for the semifinals and final from Monterrey, Mexico. Every match from the region’s premier women’s soccer tournament will stream live on Paramount+, with CBS Sports Network simulcasting select matches, including USA/Haiti and Mexico/Jamaica on July 4, along with both Semifinal matches. Host Poppy Miller, along with Briana Scurry, Kaylyn Kyle and Janelly Farías, will serve as studio analysts throughout the Championship. The Semifinals and Final will feature Lisa Byington as play-play announcer, with Aly Wagner as analyst. Jenny Chiu will serve as the sideline reporter for the matches.

ESPN serves up The Championships, Wimbledon from the All England Lawn Tennis Club starting Monday. In addition to television coverage on ESPN and ESPN2 and streaming on ESPN+ and ESPN3, for the first time in history, ABC will broadcast live matches. ESPN+ will offer coverage from multiple courts all day of the Gentlemen’s, Ladies’ Mixed, Boys’ and Girls’ (Singles and Doubles), Legends and Wheelchair division championships. ESPN Deportes will also air more than 55 hours of live action, including the Ladies’ and Gentlemen’s Semifinals and Championships.

Group ONE Holdings and Media City Qatar signed a Memorandum of Understanding to develop a strategic long-term partnership, collaborating in the production and development of a wide range of global content in Qatar across multiple media sectors. The partnership will kick off by showcasing Qatar in the filming of Season 2 of the Netflix series The Apprentice: ONE Championship Edition, a business reality show streamed in more than 150 countries. ONE and Media City are also in discussions to develop and produce live sports programming, including studio shows.

The New Orleans Pelicans sealed a rights extension with Bally Sports New Orleans that ensures the regional network will remain the team’s exclusive local media partner. Under the new agreement, Bally Sports New Orleans will continue to produce approximately 75 regular season games each season, along with select preseason contests and first round playoff games.

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SPONSORSHIP & PROMOTION

Major League Baseball informed clubs that they can sell CBD sponsorships. That AP writes that any sponsor would need to be certified by the NSF, a global health and safety organization, to ensure the CBD products do not contain THC that causes psychoactive effects. Any sponsor would also need to be approved by the commissioner’s office.

In celebration of the 50th anniversary of Title IX, the National Women’s Soccer League joined the Demand IX campaign to advocate for stronger Title IX protections and enforcement, in collaboration with the National Women’s Law Center, the Billie Jean King Leadership Initiative and the Women’s Sports Foundation. All 12 NWSL clubs have also joined the effort. “For 50 years, Title IX has provided a pathway towards gender equity, not only in athletics, but in all facets of our society, and that’s something to celebrate,” said NWSL Commissioner Jessica Berman. “The decades-long effort to implement, maintain and strengthen Title IX has given way to the many incredible opportunities female athletes now have to compete at a high level, but there is still more work to be done. I’m excited to see what we can collectively achieve over the next 50 years as we continue working towards an even brighter future.”

DIGITAL, DATA & TECH

Speaking of Title IX, Division Street announced the upcoming launch of “Visions Of Flight” an NFT collection designed to benefit all participating Oregon Ducks women student-athletes. Revenue from the sale of Visions of Flight NFTs will be split with 75% shared equally by participating athletes, while 25% is retained by Division Street to offset the expenses of the project.

Binance kicked off an exclusive, multi-year NFT partnership with Cristiano Ronaldo and will launch a global campaign aiming to give Ronaldo’s fans an introduction to Web3 with an entry point into the world of NFTs. Over the course of the agreement, Cristiano Ronaldo and Binance will create a series of collections for sale exclusively on the Binance NFT platform.

The National Basketball Retired Players Association struck a licensing deal with ARIA Exchange. The multi-year agreement will allow ARIA Exchange to create and market virtual marketing ad-campaigns to brands featuring Legends and virtual images of Legends in the form of NFTs. The first release featuring NBRPA Legends will be available summer 2022 exclusively on ARIA Exchange and will include such names such as Bill Russell, Jerry West, Karl Malone, Isiah Thomas, Chris Mullin, John Stockton, Clyde Drexler, Dominique Wilkins, Grant Hill, Hakeem Olajuwon, Earl Monroe, Elgin Baylor and more.

Stephen Curry and his purpose-driven company, SC30 Inc., unveiled “surprise” merch during the NBA Finals Game 4 tunnel walk, which will be available exclusively to Curry’s 2974 Collection NFT holders. With the help of his 2974 Discord channel, this exclusive merch was inspired by some of Curry’s most prized possessions – his tattoos.

TickPick inked a partnership with the BIG3 3-on-3 basketball league to be the official ticket marketplace for the entire 2022 season. “The BIG3 has become a staple for basketball fans everywhere,” TickPick Business Development Manager Hayley Coppola said. “The league has a coolness factor that has sparked tremendous growth amongst fans. Between the intense competition on the court and entertainment off of it, attending a BIG3 event is one of the best ways to spend a summer Saturday or Sunday. We’re thrilled to partner with BIG3, and this will open the door for future partnerships with other up-and-coming leagues and properties.”

ESPORTS

G4 and WWE are teaming up for the release of new content series, in partnership with Xfinity, titled Arena. The monthly show blends the world of streamers, celebrities, pro-athletes and WWE Superstars as they enter the G4 Arena to hash out their personal/professional issues with a gauntlet of chaotic, and hilarious, challenges. The series if hosted by Xavier Woods Gina Darling and will feature major internet personalities including Twitch streamers QTCinderella and Myth who are stepping in to the Arena to air out their personal grievances for episode 1. The series debuts on June 29 at 7p.

Envy and Jack Link’s renewed and expanded their partnership that represents Jack Link’s longest continuous running investment in an esports sponsorship to-date with Jack Link’s serving as the Official Protein Snack of Optic Gaming, OpTic Texas, the Dallas Fuel, and Envy Gaming under terms of the deal. New this year is sponsorship of OpTic including content creators and competitive esports teams under the OpTic brand. Jack Link’s will have prime jersey position on the OpTic Texas (Call of Duty League) jerseys and sleeve sponsorship position on all other Envy and OpTic teams, as well as sponsor the Envy team competing in World Chase Tag.

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