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September 2, 2020

Fan Fact
According to Zoomph’s NWSL and WNBA Beverage Insights Report, over 57% of fans talking about Budweiser were female fans. In comparison, only 47% of fans talking about Budweiser during the 2019-20 NFL season were females.

Top Story

Inside ESPN’s new 4K-capable video content factory on the Las Vegas Strip

Late last month, ESPN opened the doors on a brand new video production studio in Las Vegas with an eye on churning out a wealth of live and VOD sports betting-themed content starting this fall.

How will the space be used?

“What we tried to do was build the maximum amount of flexibility for content creation into this space and opportunity,” says Mike Foss, Senior Director, Remote Production Operations for ESPN, adding this space in Vegas is very much inspired by the learnings that the network picked up from the South Street Seaport facility that it opened in New York City in 2018. “I think a lot of that reflects much of the sensibilities that we’ve come to appreciate from [South Street] Seaport.”

While the studio will mostly garner attention for its objective of creating betting-themed content, ESPN has larger aspirations for the space. In fact, there are plans to utilize the studio on the Monday Night Football programming schedule which is set to include the Las Vegas Raiders’ first home game at the new Allegiant Stadium on Sept. 21. Also, the original plan was to launch the studio back in March (prior to the COVID-19 outbreak) and for it to be heavily used for the 2020 NFL Draft, which was originally scheduled to be hosted in Las Vegas before the event went virtual. Throw it UFC and major boxing events taking place in the city and other major sporting events, ESPN brass plan to utilize the space in many other circumstances.

The bottom line:

“We’re really hoping to turn the Las Vegas studio into a content creation facility,” says Chris Calcinari, SVP, Remote Operations for ESPN and ABC Sports.

Read: Sports Video Group


Baseball is drawing in viewers. Where will it go from here?

In a week in which the Padres seemingly hit nightly grand slams and the White Sox were homering like the 2019 Twins, pandemic positives and negatives turned to a different set of statistics — namely baseball’s television ratings. What do they mean? “I believe it’s a positive,” says Red Sox GM Chaim Bloom, “no matter how confusing the postponements and positive tests and shutdowns seem to get.” Recently there was a significant development detailed here in The Athletic by Daniel Kaplan and in Forbes by Maury Brown: Baseball is seeing a surge in ratings, especially among younger demographics and women.

“Sure, the games aren’t exactly the same, but I think this is why it’s important we’re playing,” says Bloom. As badly as the Red Sox have played, do parents want to watch political news or Alex Verdugo? Verdugo is new. In South Florida, fans can see Sixto Sánchez. Toronto sees that Bo Bichette is a star. The White Sox fans see the game in Luis Robert, and all that surrounds him. There’s not all that much else on television right now other than sports.

Read: The Athletic


Kyrie Irving, Malcolm Brogdon embody philanthropy push among athletes

When DeAndre Jordan and his Treehouse Giving Foundation started donating meals during the pandemic, his goal was to help frontline workers fight COVID-19 and combat the subsequent food insecurity problem. When retired NBA star Dwyane Wade, Thunder guard Chris Paul and Blazers’ Carmelo Anthony launched the Social Change Fund in late July, they did so to address social and economic justice issues in black communities throughout the country. Both efforts highlight a pair of issues plaguing American society and the greater global community right now: COVID-19 and the fight for social justice and equality. They’re also examples of the celebrity-driven philanthropic work that has increased over the last six months.

Since March, philanthropy attorneys and funds have seen what four in the field describe as a “substantial increase” in the formation of those very foundations through which many stars make such donations, as was the case with the aforementioned NBA trio. Nets star Kyrie Irving, Cowboys running back Ezekiel Elliott, Pacers guard Malcolm Brogdon are among the others who have launched their own foundations in recent months. Philanthropy attorney Andrew Morton has seen a “significant uptick in new client inquiries” in the last four months. Morton, a partner at Handler Thayer LLP and chair of the firm’s Sports & Entertainment Law Group, said he has probably taken on “two or three times more clients than I normally would [in that span].” Among them are foundations started by Irving, Elliott, Brogdon, golfer Justin Thomas as well as Ironman World Champion and former Olympian Joanna Zeiger.

Read: Sportico

Partner Content

Women's Sports Beverage Report

When it comes to league fan bases, there is none more passionate or diverse as women's sports league. Since the return of sports this summer, we have seen both the NWSL and the WNBA shine through social media by means of the Challenge Cup and campaigns like the Orange Hoodie campaign.

Zoomph’s latest industry report dives deeper into the beverage industry’s impact in women’s sports, including beverage choice preferences by fan segments, brand affinities within the beverage categories, and top beverage sponsor campaigns this year. Check out the report now!


Texas introduces LEVERAGE program to help NIL earning potential

The Texas Longhorns have furthered their efforts in helping student-athletes learn how to profit on their name, image and likeness, and introduced a new program, LEVERAGE, which provides assistance for athletes looking to develop and grow their own brand. LEVERAGE is composed of four main areas of focus: Personal branding and brand management, business formation and entrepreneurship, opportunity management and financial literacy.

“Texas is a land of opportunity, Austin is a thriving, dynamic and energetic city right in the middle of it, and The University of Texas is like none other,” said UT Vice President and Athletics Director Chris Del Conte. “All of those factors, along with the national and worldwide power of the Longhorn brand are among the many things that will be key elements in our exciting new LEVERAGE program. The program is designed to prepare, enhance and play a critical role in our student-athletes developing and growing their personal brands.

Read: 247Sports


LA 2028 Olympics unveils emblem with support from Billie Eilish, Reese Witherspoon, Gabby Douglas

Organizers of the 2028 Olympic and Paralympic Games in Los Angeles are launching the official emblem, with backing from 26 high-profile athletes and entertainers. LA28 unveiled the logo Tuesday — with the L, 2 and 8 serving as the foundation and individual stories expressed through an ever-changing “A.” Participants in the launch, bringing their personal stories and dreams to life through their individual interpretations include Billie Eilish, Lilly Singh, Reese Witherspoon, and Olympians Alex Morgan, Allyson Felix, Chloe Kim, Gabby Douglas, Michael Johnson, and Simone Manuel.

“There has never been a more important time to give rise to athlete voices,” said LA28 Chairperson Casey Wasserman. “Sports are a special part of our global culture, connecting people and fans across communities and around the world. The LA28 Olympic and Paralympic Games will be a platform for individual stories of triumph, heartbreak and opportunity as we recognize and revere humanity’s diversity and dreams for the future.”

Read: Variety

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Therabody Named Proud Partner Of Los Angeles Rams, Supporting Player Training And Recovery

The Details

The Los Angeles Rams are partnering with Therabody, formerly known as Theragun, making the LA-based company and global leader in tech wellness and recovery the team's official percussive therapy partner. The partnership will provide Los Angeles Rams players and staff education on the benefits of activation and recovery using Theragun Percussive Massage Therapy devices to maximize player performance and training.


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LFC Foundation – Liverpool, UK

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