09/11/17: The Vault NYC breaks down the NHL’s new campaign

Good morning. It’s Monday September 11, 2017 and this is your first early morning Sports briefing.

With the National Hockey League Players’ Association and the NHL locking in hockey’s Declaration of Principles, designed to “advance policies, programs and initiatives, while inspiring fans, players and communities to create the best possible experience for the entire hockey community,” the league has now launched a new ad campaign promoting the initiative, tapping the services of The Vault NYC to showcase a theme of serving youth hockey with an enjoyable experience for players, parents, siblings, coaches, referees, volunteers and other stakeholders, and that the game’s greatest value is the role it plays in the development of character and life skills. The 90-second video launched last week and will run throughout the upcoming NHL season with shorter versions also available.
Jon Paley, CCO and Managing Partner of The Vault NYC, broke down the strategy of the campaign and its personal impact.
Paley on taking on the project: When I learned about the NHL’s Declaration of Principles and the need for an impactful video to convey this messaging, I immediately knew it was a project that our team could nail. As a dad of children who are involved in youth sports, this initiative resonates with me on both a personal and professional basis. Partnering with the NHL is a great opportunity for our shop and we couldn’t be more proud to have them as a client.
On working with the NHL: First and foremost, we are huge fans. Our approach for every project is unique — we apply a conceptual thinking angle through the minds of die-hard sports fans. We have strong ideas grounded in authentic thinking that align with sophisticated writing and top shelf execution.
On how client needs have evolved: Versatility is key to serving the client at all angles. Clients’ needs are changing with every campaign and we do a great job of dynamically serving them by applying a unique approach to each project.

The new NFL season opened with a slightly-muffled bang, as the Chiefs upset over the Patriots delivered NBC with a hardy 22.2 million viewers in Total Audience Delivery numbers and earned a 14.6 overnight rating, according to Nielsen, but both numbers were off-pace from last year’s opening game, which drew 25.4 million viewers with a 16.5 in overnight numbers. Still, the game ranked as the most-watched show in all of television in the past three months, and viewership was up 8% over the 2016 full-season SNF average TAD. NBC Sports Digital’s live stream of last night’s NFL Kickoff game ranks as its most streamed SNF game ever with fans consuming 82.7 million live streaming minutes across 1.3 million unique devices, up 38% and 28%, respectively, from last year’s NFL Kickoff game.
Saturday then saw ABC’s Saturday Night Football – pitting Oklahoma/Ohio State – drum up a 5.3 in overnight numbers with an additional streaming audience of 170,000 in the average minute. The overnight and streaming average minute audience is up 39% and 98%, respectively, from SNF’s week 2 telecast last season (Virginia Tech/Tennessee). Meanwhile, the Auburn/Clemson matchup on ESPN earned a 2.0 overnight with a streaming audience of 113,000 in the average minute, up 43% and 61% respectively from ESPN’s week 2 primetime telecast a year ago.
The evening saw Saturday’s US Open Women’s Championship on ESPN – a battle of young American women that saw Sloane Stephens emerge triumphant – draw a 1.9 overnight rating in the metered markets for the match portion of the three-hour telecast, 36% higher than last year’s women’s final. That marks the highest overnight rating for the match in the three years ESPN has held exclusivity for the US Open. The highest-rated markets were Norfolk-Portsmoutth-Newport News (3.3), Washington, DC (3.2), Birmingham (2.9), West Palm Beach-Ft. Pierce (2.8), and New York (2.7). The total average audience for ESPN’s exclusive coverage of the US Open from New York through Thursday was up 11% to 952,000 viewers on average, compared to 856,000 for the first 11 days of last year’s event. 
Meanwhile, today’s ep of Live with Kelly and Ryan will see hosts Kelly Ripa and Ryan Seacrest welcome the new 2017 U.S. Open Women’s champion Sloane Stephens.
Tonight’s doubleheader debut of Monday Night Football will see ESPN Deportes get the ball with Alvaro Martín providing play-by-play with Raul Allegre as analysts and John Sutcliffe as on-site reporter.  Each presentation of MNF on ESPN Deportes will be preceded with an NFL Esta Noche pregame at 8p, hosted by Eduardo Varela, Pablo Viruega and include onsite reports from John Sutcliffe.  In addition, ESPN Deportes’ weekly show NFL Live returns every Saturday morning at 8a.
Showtime announced the debut of the new documentary Tough Guys which “explores origins and the development of the mixed martial arts movement.” The program is executive produced by Morgan Spurlock (Super Size Me) and Academy Award winner Ross Kauffman (Born Into Brothels) and will debut on Sept. 15 at 9p.

Six classes. One unique experience. Countless business and networking opportunities. Only a few tickets left! Join us on Sept. 15 for the Cynopsis Esports Master Class taking place behind the scenes of ESL One New York. Space is extremely limited so register now!
KCBS Radio announced that Pro Football Hall of Famer John Madden is returning to All News KCBS 106.9FM/740AM Mondays and Fridays at 9:15a PT. Each report features Madden’s “signature style football analysis and candid sports commentary.” “With the start of football season, I thought it was the right time to come back to radio. I am excited to be back with KCBS,” he said.
Power of Sports presented by Group One Thousand One is coming to FOX Sports RSNs, serving as a 30-minute monthly series that debuts this month on FOX Sports Southwest and other participating FOX Sports Regional Networks, including FOX Sports Southeast; FS Florida/Sun; FS Midwest; FS West/Prime Ticket; FS Arizona; FS San Diego; and FS Ohio/SportsTime. Each month’s show will share stories of people, organizations and communities connecting through sports to create opportunities for youth to join teams and is hosted by Rick Horrow.
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The World Surf League and Jeep locked in a long-term renewal and expansion of their global partnership that will see the Jeep brand continue as the official and exclusive global automotive partner of the WSL Championship Tour and the naming rights partner to the WSL Jeep Leaders Tour Rankings for the men’s and women’s Championship Tour. The partnership also includes 2020, the year that surfing will make its debut on the world stage at the Olympic Games in Tokyo. “The Jeep brand embodies the spirit and soul of surfing and surf lifestyle, which makes this partnership so special,” said Beth Greve, WSL Chief Commercial Officer. “We are incredibly excited to continue working together to bring amazing competitions, more must-see stories of the Jeep Leaderboard and showcase the WSL’s best in the Jeep Leader Jersey to our fans around the globe.”
FIBA and Swiss watch brand Tissot renewed a five-year partnership, running through 2021 and will see Tissot’s presence across FIBA’s digital assets be significantly heightened and the brand will serve as Presenting Partner for mobile apps from the org. Additionally, Tissot will present the newly-created Buzzer Beater clips featuring the most spectacular baskets scored at the buzzer during FIBA competitions which are available to fans across FIBA digital platforms.

Nitro Circus launched its all-new original series Mic’d Up last Friday as part of Facebook’s rollout of Watch. The series scored over one million views to date. “Mic’d Up gives the audience a unique perspective at what is going through the minds of the best action sports athletes as they take on some of the most difficult tricks in the world,” said Mike Cowan, Nitro Circus’ Chief Digital Officer. “For years, Nitro Circus has heavily invested in original video programming on Facebook and we are excited to see that our first series on the new Watch platform is being so well received.”
The Baltimore Ravens partnered with Faceware Interactive and Image Metrics technology to launch a photo real, virtual, face painting experience into the team’s mobile app. The feature allows fans to choose from 13 different face paint looks to express their team pride without the actual face painting. Later this season, fans will have access to the “Fan Mirror,” a full-size, movable, face recognition mirror located on RavensWalk that will use facial recognition of fans in the stands and project face paint on them to the RavensVision boards.
Meanwhile, the neighboring Washington Redskins unveiled a partnership with 15 Seconds of Fame to provide fans at FedExField with their personal video moments when they appear on the stadium’s high definition videoboards. Fans can receive the free content by visiting the Redskins mobile app.

Riot laid out the on-air talent for the upcoming League of Legends 2017 World Championship, with the play-in stage set to start on Sept. 28. Handling play-by-play this year will be Aaron “Medic” Chamberlain, Clayton “CaptainFlowers” Raines, Daniel “Drakos” Drakos, David “Phreak” Turley, Devin “PiraTechnics” Younge, Julian “Pastrytime” Carr, Matthew “Fish” Stewart, Max “Atlus” Anderson, Trevor “Quickshot” Henry and Rivington Bisland III.
Bethesda Softworks is teaming up with Collegiate Starleague to launch a new Quake Champions tournament for college students. The two will offer $100,000 in prize money for players, who will also be competing for scholarship funds, with the top eight qualifying for a QuakeCon 2018 final. Play will formally begin in February 2018, although CSL will host smaller monthly Sacrifice tournaments through the end of the year.
SteelSeries inked a deal with Danish Counter-Strike team North for a sponsorship and collaborative partnership. In addition, SteelSeries and North will work together as partners in innovative product design and in elevating both brands in gaming and esports “SteelSeries has played a crucial role in driving the esports industry forward. Our partnerships with players and organizations that compete at the highest levels, and that embody the fundamentals on which our brand was built are what set our standards higher than others. They drive our need for constant innovation and inspire our award-winning products,” says Ehtisham Rabbani, SteelSeries CEO. “Counter-Strike is where our brand began; it’s at our core. We are incredibly happy and proud to announce our partnership with North.”

ESPN kicks off MNF with a doubleheader that includes Saints/Vikings at 6:55p and Chargers/Broncos at 10:15p. 
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ON THIS DAY in 1982: Chris Evert wins her sixth and final US Open Women’s Singles title.
In the Know: What was the last MLB club to claim back-to-back World Series Championships? (Email [email protected] with your answer and be sure to include your name, company and city.)
Answer to Our Last Sports Trivia Question: Who is the NFL’s current active career rushing leader? Answer: Frank Gore. Also, I stand corrected on the previous question about the longest opening day win streak as the answer is actually the 49ers. Kudos: Nate Hammond/NY; Randy Ingram-WISH-TV/WNDY-TV/Indianapolis; Andy Pittman-TAMU/College Station; Matt Fumagalli-Levy/Chicago; Tom Moore-Kalt Productions/LA; David Westberg-SAG-AFTRA Federal Credit Union/Burbank
Later — Chris
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