12/06/16: MLB’s new outfit; ESPN dabbles in Magic; NHL order Donuts



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Good morning. It’s Tuesday December 6, 2016 and this is your first early morning Sports briefing. 

Under Armour’s deal with MLB is complete, with the company announcing a 10-year deal with the league  as well as Fanatics  that makes the global performance brand the official uniform provider to MLB and marks Under Armour’s first-ever professional league uniform deal. The three organizations unveiled a “new revolutionary model” that launches with the 2020 MLB season and makes Under Armour the exclusive MLB provider of all on-field uniform components including jerseys, baselayer, game-day outerwear, and year-round training apparel for all 30 MLB Clubs. Meanwhile, Fanatics will be granted broad consumer product licensing rights to manage the manufacturing and distribution of Under Armour and Fanatics fan gear.

"Under Armour is proud of our long-standing relationship with MLB and we look forward to this exciting next chapter. This is a watershed moment for the Under Armour brand as this partnership with MLB and Fanatics furthers our collective dedication to bringing passion, energy and innovation to the game of baseball," said Kevin Plank, Founder and CEO, Under Armour. "Under Armour’s goal is to engage and excite MLB’s incredibly diverse fan-base across America and around the world, and grow the game for the next generation of great athletes."


Magic Johnson is heading back to ESPN, joining the network once again for NBA Countdown as a studio analyst and will first appear as part of ABC’s Christmas NBA coverage. He will then join NBA Countdown pre-game coverage for the NBA Saturday Primetime on ABC series starting Jan. 21, joining Michael Wilbon and Sage Steele.

Ahead of its first MLS Cup presentation, FOX Sports added a special MLS Cup preview show that will run Friday at 10p on FS1, the evening before FOX’s presentation of the game. Rob Stone hosts the hour-long preview show from BMO Field with Alexi Lalas, Eric Wynalda and Stu Holden with special reports from Grant Wahl and expert analysis from John Strong, Brad Friedel and Julie Stewart-Binks.
ESPN announced its field for the 2017 Jimmy V Men’s Basketball Classic, which will mark its 23rd annual doubleheader anchoring the Jimmy V Week for Cancer Research. Next year’s contenders will be headlined by UConn/Syracuse and Gonzaga/Villanova with games played on Dec. 5 on ESPN from Madison Square Garden. “We are thrilled to welcome these storied programs to the annual Jimmy V Classic,” said Clint Overby, Vice President, ESPN Events. “To have Syracuse and UConn continue their long-standing rivalry, and to start a new series between Villanova and Gonzaga, will make for great basketball during such an important and meaningful Jimmy V Classic.”
UFC heavyweight staple Alistair Overeem is donning a microphone to serve as an analyst for Glory: Collision on Dec. 10. He joins Todd Grisham, who is handling play-by-play, and standing analyst "Bazooka" Joe Valtellini.

The 2017 Nitro World Games are going home again, with Nitro Circus announcing that it will return to Salt Lake City on June 24 next year for its world championship. NBC carries the finals in primetime.

Thuuz Sports revealed results of its survey studying DVRs and live sports, revealing that  among other highlights – 84.3% of pay TV subscribers with DVRs use them to record sports while 84.0% of those sports DVR users report doing so at least several times monthly. In addition, two of the top three reasons given for Sports DVR usage relate to watching sports that viewers would otherwise miss all or part of while 70.1% of sports fans who use DVRs state being "extremely" or "very" interested in automated curation of personalized highlights from recently recorded games.


What it means to win a Social Good Award:
ESPN: "Winning a Cynopsis award in 2016 was a huge honor. Any time your work is recognized amongst the industry is a great achievement and one we don’t take for granted.”
Got Your 6: “By winning the 2016 Cynopsis Media’s Social Good Award, we’ve been able to show that Got Your 6 is a catalyst in changing the national narrative around veterans so that their leadership and skills are recognized and utilized at home."
Throw your hat in the ring by entering before December 8.


Dunkin’ Donuts is dipping into the NHL, announcing a multi-year agreement that makes the brand the official US coffee, donut and breakfast sandwich of the league. The partnership marks Dunkin’ Donuts’ first national sports league partnership and will officially launch during the 2017 Bridgestone NHL Winter Classic outdoor game in St. Louis on Jan. 2. The deal sees Dunkin’ Donuts set to be “prominently featured” at several of the NHL jewel events, including the NHL Winter Classic, NHL All-Star Weekend, NHL Stadium Series and the NHL’s year-long Centennial celebration and the brand will be included in advertising, LED Signage and jumbotron displays. In addition, Dunkin’ Donuts has a multi-million dollar partnership with NBC Sports that will include custom in-game features and dasherboard visibility, as well as advertising across broadcast, digital and social media channels beginning January 2 and continuing throughout the NHL season. Ryan McDonagh and David Backes will join Dunkin’ Donuts as national brand spokespersons.

Bush’s Beans and Minor League Baseball are partnering up in a multi-year deal that makes the brand the "Official Beans of Minor League Baseball," and a "Preferred Partner" of a number of MiLB teams starting in 2017. "What better time than at the Baseball Winter Meetings, when our entire baseball family and closest friends are gathered in one place, to announce the collaboration of two family-centric brands — Minor League Baseball and Bush’s Beans," said David Wright, Minor League Baseball’s Chief Marketing & Commercial Officer. "Aligning with a company that shares a similar vision for growth and like core values is front and center in our approach to the marketplace."

On Location Experiences, the official hospitality partner of the NFL, picked up Sean Connolly’s Kreate Inc., a full-service live creative concept, production and entertainment firm, as well as Jack Murphy’s Nomadic Entertainment, an experiential marketing and events company. OLE has also entered into a new joint venture with Ricky Kirshner of Kirshner Events. “These new additions to the On Location Experiences roster perfectly align with our growth strategy and set us apart as the full service experiential events company best equipped to provide memorable and exclusive fan experiences,” said John Collins, CEO, On Location Experiences.

FOX Sports will visit the Nasdaq MarketSite in Times Square to celebrate the company’s first-ever MLS Cup broadcast with Alexi Lalas and John Strong ringing the Opening Bell.


Twitter released five hashtag triggered Twitter emojis dedicated to the final College Football Playoff selection committee rankings of 2016. Fans Tweeting with #CFBPlayoff, #RollTide, #ALLIN, #GoBucks and #PurpleReign will now see a unique Twitter emoji icon appear in their Tweets.

Meanwhile, the Pro Football Hall of Fame launched its official Snapchat account that will feature daily content through its username ProFootballHOF. The Hall of Fame will be hosting a contest for new followers with a chance to win a Hall of Fame Membership which includes complimentary museum admission and parking for one year in addition to other member exclusive benefits.

TuneIn announced the development of 20 NFL Team Stations, giving fans 24/7 access to live and on-demand content directly from their favorite team. The build out of the team stations marks the next phase in TuneIn’s partnership with the NFL. Teams will include the Ravens, Bills, Bears, Bengals, Browns, Cowboys, Broncos, Lions, Texans, 49ers, Colts, Jaguars, Rams, Vikings, Patriots, Saints, Giants, jets, Chargers and Redskins.

The Associated Press and Sportradar unveiled an expansion of their collaboration that will enable Sportradar to distribute premium AP products such as breaking news, action photos, player headshots and game recaps across 23 sports to its worldwide client base. “We are pleased to boost the depth of our content solutions with award winning editorial and photos as well as the graphics bank from The Associated Press. The AP will be a premium content offering for our clients around the world,” said Tom Masterman, chief revenue officer, U.S. at Sportradar. “The expansion of our relationship with AP is a testament to our efforts and dedication to serving their member newspapers and the shared vision between AP and Sportradar.”

Olympic Channel debuts Camps to Champs on Thursday at 7p GMT. The four-episode docu-series showcases how sports can positively change lives as viewers see athletes visit refugee camps and areas for the displaced.


The Call of Duty World League, Presented by PlayStation 4, unveiled plans for the upcoming season, which starts tomorrow. The new CWL season will feature a series of 4 LAN-based competitions as well as an all-new, worldwide LAN league for Pros. Players across the board will be able to earn CWL Pro Points through the season to lead to qualification for the CWL Championship in August with events taking place in Las Vegas, Atlanta, and Anaheim. 16 teams are slates to take part, including 9 North American and 7 international. “The 2016 inaugural season of the CWL was incredible. We saw more than 1,000 teams from around the world compete, and well over 1 billion minutes of broadcast content featuring some of the greatest Call of Duty competition ever,” said Executive Vice President and General Manager of Call of Duty, Rob Kostich.


UFC named Andrew Schleimer as the company’s Chief Financial Officer. Schleimer will replace outgoing CFO Nakisa Bidarian who will be leaving at the end of December. Most recently, Schleimer served as EVP & CFO of Digital Turbine Inc.

Intersport announced that Stacey Vollman Warwick joined the team as SVP, General Manager. Warwick’s responsibilities include expanding Intersport’s content businesses and she will help establish Intersport’s first satellite office and help build out their New York-based presence to play a larger role on the city’s sports, marketing and media landscape.


Florida/Duke on ESPN at 9p.


2017 is right around the corner…
Start the year off right by inviting the stars on your team to attend our new offering – the CYNOPSIS RATINGS MASTER CLASS on January 25 at the YCNY.
This intensive day will cover everything you need to know about cross-platform ratings, social TV data, advanced targeting, and more. It will get you and your colleagues on the right track to tackle all the opportunities and challenges 2017 will bring us. Check out the agenda and register by Jan 6 for the advance rate.


ON THIS DAY in 1960: The American League grants Gene Autry an expansion franchise, the Angels.

In The Know: Who did the Angels beat to win their only World Series? (Email [email protected] with your answer and be sure to include your name, company and city.)

Answer to Our Last Sports Trivia Question: Which university has the longest active streak of playing bowl games? Answer: Florida State, running back to 1982. Kudos: Traci Liner-WME/IMG/NY; Lewis Blaustein-GreenSportsBlogger/NY; Michael Ritz-BucStar Consulting/NY; Mike May-PHIT America/Wellington; Synda Kollman-Charter Marketing Group/Deerfield Beach; Andy Pittman-TAMU/College Station; Kevin Micklo-Pinnacle Advertising/Chicago; Tom Moore-Kalt Productions/LA; David Westberg-SAG-AFTRA Federal Credit Union/Burbank; Judie Henninger-Valentine Productions/Santa Monica.

Later — Chris
Chris Pursell for Cynopsis | Sports @VegasandVine

Roberta Caploe: Publisher @robertacaploe
Diane K Schwartz: Senior Vice President, Media Communications Group

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