10/10/17: UFC locked in a deal with Modelo to serve as the new beer for the MMA promotion

Good morning. It’s Tuesday October 10, 2017 and this is your first early morning Sports briefing.

UFC is now tapping a new official beer. The organization locked in a partnership with Modelo Especial for a new multi-year marketing partnership that makes Modelo the “Official Beer and Malt Beverage” sponsor of UFC in the United States. The brand replaces Bid Light for the role and will be the presenting sponsor for select UFC Pay-Per-View events and VIP Experiences based in the US, along with signage and branding inside UFC’s Octagon. Modelo will also feature UFC athletes and personalities in advertising.
“Modelo is an amazing brand that shares UFC’s unmatched commitment to its fan base,” UFC President Dana White said. “I love Modelo and we’re already talking about doing a lot of exciting things together.”
“Uniting the passionate fans of UFC with Modelo, a brand that stands for the fighting spirit is an ultimate win for our consumers and our company,” said Ann Legan, Vice President of Marketing for Casa Modelo with Constellation Brands Beer Division. “With both UFC and Modelo driving unprecedented growth for our respective industries, this partnership is a game-changer for Modelo and we look forward to creating new experiences for fans.”           

ESPN suspended Jemele Hill on Monday for violation of the company’s social-media policy. The move comes after Cowboys owner Jerry Jones stated that he would bench any players who “disrespect the flag,” and Hill subsequently suggested on Twitter that fans who disagreed with Jones’s mandate should boycott Cowboys advertisers. ESPN said in a statement that Hill was suspended for “a second violation of our social media guidelines.”
In other talent news, HBO Sports locked in a new multi-year agreement with Jim Lampley, who serves as the primary voice for its HBO Boxing franchise. Lampley will continue to serve on multiple HBO Boxing platforms, including the host and blow-by-blow voice for World Championship Boxing, HBO Boxing After Dark and HBO Pay-Per-View. He also will continue to host the boxing studio program The Fight Game With Jim Lampley.
Tennis Channel added Hall of Fame coach Nick Bollettieri to its roster of experts. Bollettieri will provide motivational tips, answer viewer questions via “Ask Nick” videos, write weekly articles for TennisChannel.com and sister site Tennis.com, and will likely contribute on air and to Tennis magazine. His first material is set to appear digitally this week during the network’s weeklong coverage of the Shanghai Rolex Masters tournament in China.
Finally, Pac-12 Networks announced extensions for a slate of basketball play-by-play announcers and on-air analysts. Among those extended were Pac-12 analysts Bill Walton, Don MacLean, Kevin O’Neill, Mary Murphy and Rosalyn Gold-Onwude.  In addition, play-by-play announcers Guy Haberman, Kate Scott and J.B. Long have also all signed extensions with Pac-12 Networks.
NBC’s presentation of the Chiefs/Texans on SNF ranked as Sunday’s top primetime show with 10.6/18 overnight Nielsen score. The 10.6/18 overnight for KC-Houston on NBC’s SNF tops the 10.2/15 for Giants-Packers in Week 5 of ’16. Top markets for Chiefs-Texans on NBC: Kansas City 43.5/62; Houston 28.0/44; New Orleans 17.9/25; Denver 16.4/28; and Richmond 14.7/23.
Elsewhere, Sunday’s two ALDS on FS1 saw the evening tilt between the Indians and Yankees draw 5,536,000 total viewers across FS1, FOX Deportes and FSGO, according to Nielsen Media Research. FS1 alone scored 5,294,000 viewers, making it the most-watched telecast on the network since last year’s Los Angeles-Chicago NLCS Game 6 with viewership up 29% compared to last year’s Chicago/San Francisco NLDS Game 3 on the channel. In the earlier game Sunday, Boston’s 10-3 win over Houston in an ALDS Game 3 delivered 2,491,000 viewers across FS1, FOX Deportes and FSGO, up 88% versus game 2 of the NLDS on FS1 in 2016. Through Game 3 (four games), the ALDS on FS1 is averaging 3,169,000 viewers, up 37% over 2015 ALDS on FS1 at the same point (2,320,000 through four games), and up 1% compared to last year’s NLDS on FS1 at the same point (3,139,000 for four games).
Elsewhere in ratings, FOX reports that the FOX Sports Regional Networks group wrapped up the 2017 MLB season with a rise of 5% in household ratings over last season, hitting a 3.25 household score with eight of the network’s MLB teams garnering year-to-year household ratings increases. The FOX Sports RSNs group featured the three highest-rated MLB teams for the 2017 season – highlighted by the Indians (8.33 HH rating), Royals (8.00 HH rating) and Cardinals (7.18 HH rating).
Professional Bull Riders announced that the PBR Global Cup will travel to Qudos Bank Arena in Sydney on June 9-10, 2018 for the second leg of the five-nation competition. PBR is finalizing primary broadcast partnerships to televise the Global Cup in each country. Additionally, the events will be distributed to more than 450 million homes in 45 territories through PBR’s existing international broadcast partners outside of its operating territories.
CBS Sports locked in its SEC on CBS football game for Oct. 21, spotlighting Tennessee/Alabama at 3:30p. Brad Nessler, Gary Danielson and reporter Allie LaForce call the contest from Bryant-Denny Stadium in Tuscaloosa.
FOX Sports’ takes on the penultimate week of the MLS regular season with a on Sunday starting at 5p on FS1 and FOX Deportes with the United/Red Bulls and Dallas FC/Sounders. Rob Stone and Alexi Lalas host FS1’s whiparound coverage, offering quick-turnaround highlights of in-progress games and the league’s most key action, MLS news and analysis. Rachel Bonnetta hosts a special digital whiparound show across FOX Soccer’s social media platforms beginning at 5:15p.  
NFL Network original series Football Town: Valdosta, GA and Elite 11 will wrap up their respective seasons with with one-hour finales tonight. Starting at 9p, the final two episodes of Football Town: Valdosta, GA will feature the outcome of the Valdosta Wildcats quest for a 2016 Georgia State Championship – the first for the storied program in 18 years. Following Football Town, back-to-back episodes of Elite 11 go inside this summer’s competition between 11 of the nation’s best high school quarterbacks as they compete for the Elite 11 MVP title at Nike Headquarters in Beaverton, OR.
Cynopsis Digital Awards: Check out the talent!
November 10 | 12pm – 2pm | NYC
41  Digital “It List” Honorees,  71  Model D Finalists and  6  celebrity presenters make for 
a one-of-a-kind Digital Awards Reception with UNLIMITED networking opportunities
. The event will be hosted by actor/host Oilver Trevena and among the ceremony’s guest presenters will be actor, comedian, writer and internet sensation,  Randy Rainbow  along with YouTube sensation,  The Gregory Brothers .


WWE announced that Kurt Angle, who will portray Colonel Angle Sanders in the newest version of the company’s partnership with KFC, will have both personas offered as playable characters in the WWE 2K18 video game. Fans can access Colonel Sanders through the game’s Create-a-Superstar Mode, while two versions of Angle are available to those who pre-order the game at participating retailers worldwide.
The NBA tipped off Jr. NBA Week by announcing the formation of the Jr. NBA Flagship Network, a move designed to provide a more consistent and positive youth basketball experience for players, parents and coaches. The initiative is comprised of 15 best-in-class youth sports organizations, members of the network share the Jr. NBA’s vision for how the game should be taught and played at the grassroots level, and have committed to pursuing the highest standards of operation in the industry. Through the collective reach of the 15 organizations that make up the Jr. NBA Flagship Network, the NBA will help ensure that one million additional youth are playing basketball in an environment that promotes health and wellness, skill development and character education.
The Florida Cup has a new partner, with Universal Orlando Resort stepping in for the soccer event, joining adidas. The Orlando theme park destination will serve as the venue for several large fan activations, including the Florida Cup Fan Fest. The 2018 Florida Cup will run Jan. 10-20.

DraftKings announced the continuing expansion of its operations in Europe, with the launch of its games in Ireland and Austria. “Sports fans in Europe are embracing the game inside the game through DraftKings’ contests and content,” said Jason Robins, DraftKings CEO. “As we looked to expand our European footprint, it was an easy choice to launch in Ireland and Austria, given their renowned passion for sports.”
With the new NHL season underway, the Philadelphia Flyers locked in a deal with Fanchest to offer fans exclusive products not available in stores or online and are approved by over 80 officially licensed top brands. Products will be delivered to their doors with options that include the regular $59 chest, a baby chest as well as a three memorabilia chest with featured.

Hulu is taking the plunge into esports, announcing a deal for new original programming developed and produced by ESL. Overall, four unique series will be created exclusively for the streaming video-on-demand service—Player v. Player, Bootcamp, Defining Moments, and ESL Replay. Player V. Player will serve as a gamified debate show with casters and esports influencers facing off over the hottest topics in esports. Bootcamp is a weekly docu-series that follows The Immortals, a top CS:GO team, as they rebuild their roster leading up to IEM Oakland. Defining Moments will “dive deep into the most impactful moments in esports history with passionate casters and analysts explaining what made these moments so monumental. Finally, ESL Replay is a fast-paced, condensed, documentary-style recap of the most memorable moments from four of the biggest multi-day esports tournaments in the world, including in-depth analyses and behind-the-scenes footage not part of the tournament live stream.
Speaking of shows, Fnatic announced a strategic partnership with GamingZone Entertainment, the producers of reality TV show GAMERZ, that will see team members that win the GAMERZ show being placed on Fnatic’s CS:GO Academy team. Fnatic will work closely with GAMERZ, with key team personnel appearing on the show to coach the contenders.
ELEAGUE is adding retired CS:GO star Janko “YNk” Paunovic to its commentating lineup for the ELEAGUE CS:GO Premier 2017 Playoffs. YNk will join Jason “Moses” O’Toole as the second former CS:GO pro contributing to ELEAGUE’s live coverage and be part of ELEAGUE’s panel of Counter-Strike experts including host Richard Lewis and commentators Anders Blume, Daniel “DDK” Kapadia, James Bardolph, Auguste “Semmler” Massonat and reporter Sue “Smix” Lee.

Joseph Mangano joined the NHL as Senior Director National Retail Sales & Marketing where he will oversee the NHL’s global licensed product retail relationships and activities to support the increase in wholesale product commitments while collaborating with key retail accounts to create awareness and promote the retail sale of NHL licensed products.
Excel Sports Management hired Sean Barror as Head of Property Sales, a new position for the company. Previously with WME-IMG, Barror will oversee Excel’s expansion into third-party commercial sales, focusing on growing Excel’s business in naming rights, marquee partnerships, sponsorship strategy and valuation services for leagues, teams, venues and other sports properties.
Troika Media Group named Rob Schwartz  as President to lead strategic growth and development of Troika Services, the performance data and intelligence division of TMG. Schwartz will be responsible for developing and executing Troika Services’ business strategy as well as seamlessly integrating data analytics, performance marketing and a live engagement platform with Troika’s creative services.

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ON THIS DAY in 1964: The Summer Olympics open in Tokyo.
In the Know: Who portrayed coach Gordon Bombay in the original The Mighty Ducks film? (Email [email protected] with your answer and be sure to include your name, company and city.)
Answer to Our Last Sports Trivia Question: Which two teams did Dean Smith’s North Carolina teams beat to win the championship? Answer: Georgetown and Michigan. Kudos: John Ferlazzo-London; Kyle Helm-CBS Sports/NY; Nate Hammond-JCC/NY; Michael Ritz-BucStar Consulting/NY; Frank Costa-CBS Sports/NY; Christian Matthews-Washington Redskins/DC; Chris Schwartz-ISC/Charlotte; Ken White-KW TV/Charlotte; Shawn Gerchicoff-Turner/Atlanta; Bill Stratton-Turner/Atlanta; Andy Pittman-TAMU/College Station; Joe Lyons-SOS Global/Dallas; John Ward-Tennis Channel/Chicago; Kevin Micklo-Pinnacle Marketing Group/Chicago; Tom Moore-Kalt Productions/LA; David Westberg-SAG-AFTRA Federal Credit Union/Burbank
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