Category Archives: NBA

Harlem Globetrotters Swanson, Rivers Join Samuelsson On Home Plate: New York Premiering Tuesday

Harlem Globetrotters stars ‘Hot Shot’ Swanson and ‘Jet’ Rivers join award-winning chef, entrepreneur, author and food activist Marcus Samuelssonin thenewest episode of the YES App original series Home Plate: New York premiering Tuesday, June 18 at 11 AM.

The YES App’s Home Plate: New York series features Samuelsson teaming up with New York Yankees stars and other high-profile athletes and entertainers to visit New York City restaurants specializing in food from the guests’ respective cultures and family heritages. 

The episode debuting on June 18 features series host Samuelsson, Swanson and Rivers visiting Sylvia’s, the world-famous soul food restaurant in Harlem known as “The Queen of Soul Food.”

Samuelsson is a renowned chef and restaurateur, owning multiple restaurants across the globe. He was the youngest chef to receive a three-star review from the New York Times and has won multiple James Beard Foundation awards including Best Chef: New York City.

Standing at 4’5,” Swanson is one of the team’s most celebrated athletes. Born in the Bronx and raised in Harlem, he started his basketball career playing college basketball at Monroe College in the Bronx. The 6’1” Rivers, who hails from Elizabeth, New Jersey, began his basketball career at Wagner College, where he was a two-time all-conference selection and led the team to their most victories during his four-year reign.

Among the episode’s highlights:

  • Sylvia’s chef Marcus Woods explains how his grandmother Sylvia Woods founded Sylvia’s in 1962 and built it up into a culinary and cultural institution still owned by the Woods family that is visited by global dignitaries, celebrities and locals
  • Marcus Samuelsson recalls coming to Sylvia’s to ask for advice for his restaurants, given the amount of knowledge and expertise Sylvia possessed.  Marcus Woods says that Marcus Samuelsson is like family to the Woods
  • ‘Jet’ and ‘Hot Shot’ help season and cook the restaurant’s signature fried chicken
  • Kenneth Woods, Marcus Woods’ father, says that when you come to Sylvia’s the first time, you are a guest, but the second time you come, you are family.

Previous Home Plate: New York episodes have featured New York Yankees ace pitcher Gerrit Cole and his wife Amy, The Sopranos stars Lorraine Bracco and Steve Schirripa, Olympic Soccer Gold Medalist Kelley O’Hara, former New York Rangers legend Henrik Lundqvist, NBA Hall of Fame player Tracy McGrady, four-time New York Yankees World Series Champion and Latin Grammy nominee Bernie Williams and New York Giants defensive lineman Kayvon Thibodeaux.

YES launched the YES App in March 2021 for authenticated users in its regional coverage territory, and it quickly became the #1 free sports app in the Apple App Store.   Direct-to-consumer access to the YES Network has been available through the YES App since March 2023.  In addition to providing fans with a live stream of the YES Network, the YES App features a variety of app-exclusive original sports and lifestyle programming similar to Home Plate: New York.

The app also serves up customizable push notifications, personalized content, live stats, play-along games and watch-party functions in conjunction with YES’ exclusive Yankees and Nets telecasts. It has won two New York Emmy Awards in its first two years of eligibility.  Fans in YES’ regional coverage territory can access the YES App by going to www.watchyesnetwork.com.

Boston Wins 18th Title over Dallas in Five Games in Strat-O-Matic Simulation

In a battle between the deeper, more balanced Boston squad and top-heavy Dallas, it’s the Celtics who came out ahead in a five-game NBA Finals as Strat-O-Matic (@strat-o-matic), the market leader in sports simulation games, simulated the championships series which begins Thursday in Boston. Fans may recall that the Celtics were tabbed as the champion in Strat-O-Matic’s preseason simulation as well.

Paced by the trio of Jayson Tatum (28.4 ppg, 11.2 rpg, 5.6 apg), Jaylen Brown (26.2/7.0/3.8) and Derrick White (19.4/6.0/5.0), with support from former Mav Kristaps Porzingis (16.4/6.6/2.4) and Jrue Holiday (12.8/5.2/7.2), Boston used that depth to its advantage in taking a 2-0 series lead at home with competitive 135-127 and 128-124 victories.

After Dallas pulled to within two games to one with a 115-108 win at home, Boston took game four, 118-103, and game five back home, 123-103, by more comfortable margins, for its 18th championship.

Dallas’s Luka Dončić led all scorers in the series at 35.6 ppg, nearly averaging a triple double with 9.6 rpg and 9.0 apg, and Kyrie Irving contributed 26.8 ppg and 5.6 apg.

Game One 1 2 3 4 TOT
DALLAS 24 46 32 25 127
BOSTON 39 38 27 31 135
Dal: Dončić 38, Irving 21; Bos: Tatum 36, Brown 25

Game Two 1 2 3 4 TOT
DALLAS 25 29 36 34 124
BOSTON 27 29 38 34 128
Dal: Dončić 35, Irving 31; Bos: Tatum 34, Holiday 24

Game Three 1 2 3 4 TOT
BOSTON 24 29 26 29 108
DALLAS 24 23 38 30 115
Bos: Brown 27, Porzingis 22; Dal: Dončić 43, Irving 24

Game Four 1 2 3 4 TOT
BOSTON 29 25 31 33 118
DALLAS 35 13 29 26 103
Bos: Brown 26, Tatum 24; Dal: Dončić 26, Irving 26

Game Five 1 2 3 4 TOT
DALLAS 30 35 19 19 103
BOSTON 32 37 33 21 123
Dal: Dončić 36, Irving 22; Bos: Brown 31, Tatum 27

NCAA Champion And WNBA Draftee, Alexis Morris Signs With The Harlem Globetrotters

The world famous Harlem Globetrotters, synonymous with basketball excellence and global entertainment, today announced the signing of former Louisiana State University (LSU) star and WNBA draftee, Alexis Morris to the Harlem Globetrotters, it was announced today by Keith Dawkins, President of Harlem Globetrotters and Herschend Entertainment Studios. Morris becomes the seventh current woman to join the organization, the most in the organization’s storied history, as they will celebrate their centennial in 2026.

“The Harlem Globetrotters have a storied history of signing some of the world’s most accomplished and coveted talent; Wilt Chamberlain, Connie Hawkins, “Curley” Neal, Lou Dunbar, Lynette Woodard and now, Alexis Morris,” said Dawkins. “As the global basketball landscape continues to evolve the Globetrotters are well positioned to offer unparalleled opportunities for professional basketball players looking to develop, and showcase, their amazing skills, make a positive impact in the community, while also benefitting from the plethora of business opportunities that our brand has to offer them. It’s an opportunity unlike any in sports. Signing Alexis reflects our commitment to pursuing the best ballers from around the world.”

Morris, who has begun her Harlem Globetrotters training and will be joining the domestic arm of the 2024 Tour, will take to the court for the first time as a Harlem Globetrotter on Friday, February 9, 2024 at the MassMutual Center in Springfield, Massachusetts, the birthplace of basketball and The Naismith Basketball Hall of Fame. Her extensive and rigorous schedule will also include stops at Barclays Center, Brooklyn, NY, on Sunday, February 18 and Madison Square Garden, Manhattan, NY, on Saturday, February 24.

Morris, known for her exceptional ball-handling and court vision, will take the court with her self-titled moniker, Alexis ‘The Show’ Morris alongside her elite teammates. The Texas native was selected in the second round of the 2023 WNBA Draft by the Connecticut Sun and is currently a free agent.  She returned to North America after starting the current season in Turkey with Ilkem Yapi Tarsus of the Turkish women’s Super League. Alexis is believed to be the first athlete to join the Harlem Globetrotters while also entertaining elite professional offers since Connie Hawkins, who played for the team and went on to a Hall of Fame Career with the Phoenix Suns.   
 
“I’m excited to join the Harlem Globetrotters and want to thank the leadership team for giving me an opportunity to grow my personal and professional career while playing the game I love,” said Morris. “There is a lot to learn from my coaches and teammates and I’m excited to highlight the level of basketball and entertainment of the organization. ‘The Show’ is now a part of the growing legacy of Harlem Globetrotters basketball.”

She will join the six women athletes who make up the Harlem Globetrotters and the Washington Generals this winter, including Fatima, ‘TNT’ Lister, Cherelle ‘Torch’ George, Arysia ‘Ace’ Porter, Kaylin ‘Sunshine’ West, Eryka ‘Spice’ Sidney, and Kayla Gabor. She also joins. nine other rookies who joined the 2024 World Tour this season. Fans can expect exclusive content of her time with the team through “My Rookie Season” on Harlem Globetrotters Youtube channel.
Morris, a dynamic point guard and a top scorer on LSU’s 2023 National Championship team, brings a stellar blend of skill, athleticism, and showmanship to the iconic Harlem Globetrotters. Her electrifying style of play and passion for the game align with the team’s commitment to delivering unparalleled entertainment to audiences worldwide.

The Harlem Globetrotters’ rich legacy of combining sportsmanship and entertainment, continue to attract top-tier athletes who embrace the joy of basketball. Follow the Harlem Globetrotters on social media for exclusive behind-the-scenes content and more team updates as they travel the world. 

Pabst Blue Ribbon Named ‘The Official Exclusive Beer Partner’ For SlamBall’s 2024 and 2025 Seasons

SlamBall, the fast-paced, gravity-defying sport that combines elements of basketball, football, hockey and acrobatics co-founded by Mike Tollin and Mason Gordon, announced today that Pabst Blue Ribbon has been named “The Official Exclusive Beer Partner” for the worldwide 2024 and 2025 seasons. Pabst Blue Ribbon will become the title sponsor of the SlamBall Summer Series Dunk Contest and will work with SlamBall to build out special year-round consumer activations, with more details to be unveiled in the coming weeks.

“We are thrilled to expand our relationship with Pabst Blue Ribbon as our Official and Exclusive Beer Partner,” said Mason Gordon, SlamBall Co-founder. “SlamBall fans will see Pabst Blue Ribbon be featured in SlamBall programming across the ESPN platform, in exciting new social media initiatives and as the title sponsor of the Pabst Blue Ribbon Dunk Contest. As a young, emerging sport we couldn’t be more proud to have a comprehensive multi-year partnership with a brand that will be celebrating its 180th year.”

“SlamBall brings the energy, excitement, and disruption to sports with an attitude and independent spirit that parallels the Pabst Blue Ribbon brand through its 180 years,” said Josh Feingold – Senior Director of Marketing Partnerships of Pabst. “We only scratched the surface last season and are thrilled to be partnered with SlamBall moving forward.”

Dates and details for SlamBall: Series 7, which will be held this summer, as well as potential domestic and international touring events for early and mid 2024, are currently being finalized.

SlamBall returned last summer to rave reviews and record responses across every measurement tool. The numbers included massive social engagement which bested virtually any other live sports property during the period, solid numbers in its time slots on ESPN, quality attendance numbers and the attention of a global media audience. During the time period of the build up and relaunch of SlamBall, no other active professional sports league, whether a startup or established league, came close in engagement or growth across Twitter and Instagram, even during a MUCH shorter run and season than the others.

SlamBall’s return last May became official when a new Series A round of funding of $11 million was announced. Led by IA Sports Ventures and Eberg Capital, both of which are co-owners of the Miami Marlins, among other investments. Others include: David Blitzer and David Adelman, both of Harris Blitzer Sports & Entertainment; Fanatics founder Michael Rubin; VC investor Gary Vaynerchuk; NBA player Blake Griffin; Sacramento Kings investor Kevin Nagle; Lloyd Danzig of Sharp Alpha; Legends Growth Enterprises; Red Games CEO Brian Lovell; attorney Jesse Sharf, Accelerate Sports; and VC investor Eric Manlunas.

The Buck Starts Here: Kareem Abdul-Jabbar’s Milwaukee Jersey Worn During His First Two NBA Seasons Debuts at Heritage

In 2018, Kareem Abdul-Jabbar penned an open letter to that year’s NBA Draft class in which he welcomed them to the “rollercoaster ride that is your rookie year.” Abdul-Jabbar, as accomplished a writer today as he was a scorer during his basketball career, warned the newbies about the “rush of confusing paradoxes, conflicting emotions, competing options, and dubious advice from crusty been-there old-timers. Like me.” At which point, Abdul-Jabbar turned his attention toward his rookie season in 1969, when the 22-year-old still known as Lew Alcindor out of UCLA was drafted first overall by the last-place Milwaukee Bucks thanks to the flip of a coin.

“I found that the best way to deal with the jitters was for me to focus on setting personal goals rather than think about the expectations others put on me,” Abdul-Jabbar wrote. “And, man, were there a lot of expectations: I’d been the first person drafted and the media directed intense attention at me about what I was going to do and how I was going to do it. All the hype left me thinking that this was mine to screw up.”

Of course, Abdul-Jabbar did anything but screw it up: During the 1969-70 season, he led the Bucks to second place in the Eastern Division and was named Rookie of the Year. One season later, he was the league’s scoring leader; the Bucks swept the Baltimore Bullets in the NBA Finals; and Abdul-Jabbar was named the Most Valuable Player for the regular season and in the Finals — of which served as prelude to a legend, as both a Buck and a Los Angeles Laker.

For the first time, Heritage offers in the Nov. 16-18 Fall Sports Catalog Auction a road Milwaukee Bucks jersey worn by Abdul-Jabbar during those historic seasons when the center snagged a league championship and a scoring title — each, the first of many to follow. Photo-matched by multiple third-party experts to crucial moments throughout Abdul-Jabbar’s days as a legend-in-the-making, the jersey serves as a thrilling offering in an auction abounding with palpable reminders of historic achievements and magical memories shaped by titanic athletes.

Resolution Photomatching confirms it was at least worn during an April 1971 Western Conference Finals versus the Lakers and an April 1971 NBA Finals game against the Bullets. Sports Investors Authentication turned up likely matches to several regular season and post-season games, dating from March 18, 1970, to the Game Four title-clinching contest against the Bullets on April 30, 1971. It is graded a MEARS A10 and also comes with a letter of provenance from Patrick McBride, a former Bucks equipment manager.

The jersey is joined in this auction by the 1969 Look Magazine College All-America Basketball Team ring presented to Alcindor in 1969. It hails from The Kareem Abdul-Jabbar Collection.

Boston Takes 18th NBA Title In Strat-O-Matic 2023-24 Simulation

After last year’s Conference Finals appearance, the retooled Boston Celtics are all-in on making a run at the NBA title. And Strat-O-Matic, the market leader in sports simulation games, has them earning their 18th crown in dominant fashion in its 2023-24 season simulation, winning 64 regular season games and nearly sweeping through the playoffs, taking 16 of 17 including the Championship in four games over upstart Minnesota.

Denver’s Nicola Jokic (27 points, league-best 13 rebounds, eight assists per game) was named MVP, with the Celtics’ Jayson Tatum (27/9/5) second and Milwaukee’s Damian Lillard (27/4/9) third. The trio plus Jimmy Butler (24/5/5) of Miami and Dallas’s Luka Doncic (31/8/8) comprised the All-NBA First Team.

Boston finished five games ahead of Milwaukee (59-23) in the Eastern Conference for the top seed, sweeping #8 Charlotte, topping #4 Cleveland (49-33), 4-1, and upending sixth seeded Miami (44-38) in four in the East playoff rounds. In the Western Conference, Minnesota (55-27), Memphis (51-31), the Los Angeles Lakers (51-31) and Golden State (51-31) comprised the top four playoff spots. The Timberwolves topped #7 Sacramento (47-35) in the Western Conference Finals to advance to its first Finals.

In his rookie season, San Antonio’s Victor Wembanyama averaged 19.9 points, 9.5 rebounds and 2.4 blocks per game.

Strat-O-Matic also simulated the league’s first in-season tournament, with Dallas surprising Boston in the final.

CIRCA-Keenan-Love-vs Tamyrik Fields (Photo by Bryan Steffy-Getty Images for SlamBall)-2800

Gambling A Part of Impressive Metrics For This Summer’s SlamBall League: Series 6 in Las Vegas

SlamBall, the fast-paced, gravity-defying sport that combines elements of basketball, football, hockey and acrobatics co-founded by Mason Gordon and Mike Tollin, today unveiled its comprehensive look at data for the recently completed season, and announced its first official plans for what lies ahead for the property.

The numbers included massive social engagement which bested virtually any other live sports property during the period, solid numbers in its time slots on ESPN, quality attendance numbers and the attention of a global media audience, all of which is detailed below.

“We set out this relaunch season with very lofty goals, and in almost every aspect we exceeded our marks,” said Mason Gordon, SlamBall co-founder. “In addition to all the positive numbers in broadcast and the digital/social space came a wide number of parties, cities and event partners eagerly interested in what our athletes and coaches were delivering on and off the court, which has led us to re-think our event footprint even sooner than next summer. While we are encouraged, we are working through many details that will be announced soon. One thing is for sure, we have set out to be the UFC for team sports, and I know we are well on our way to getting there now.”

Some key metrics:

Digital/social:

During the time period of the build up and relaunch of SlamBall, no other active professional sports league, whether a start up or established league, came close in engagement or growth across Twitter and Instagram, even during a MUCH shorter run and season than the others.

-Close to 100 SlamBall original posts exceeded 100,000 views across social platforms during the six week run, amongst the most for any sports property during the period.

-Other major media platforms including ESPN, Barstool Sports, Bleacher Report, Overtime, FanDuel, The Score, Jomboy Media, FOS, Ballislife, Complex and more organically shared SlamBall content over 100 times across platforms, totaling over 10M additional views.

– SlamBall’s engagement far surpassed the competition of other major sports leagues during the lead up and run of the season, with engagement rates of over 6% vs the competition average of 1.62%. The only league that came semi-close was the Premier Lacrosse League at 2.7%.

– Twitter was much of the same story with an engagement rate of .464%, more than 4x the average of .111% and beating the second league, Professional Pickleball League (.140%) by a very healthy margin.

– SlamBall also saw TREMENDOUS growth vs the competition, growing 48.5% on Instagram (competition average of 18.4%) and still ahead of MLS (44.6%) during a time period in which Lionel Messi joined the league.

– This was true on Twitter as well, where SlamBall grew 46.9% vs a 16.1% competition average, and the second highest being PFL at 31.8%.

Broadcast:

SlamBall was able to secure almost 50 hours of live programming on the ESPN networks, one of the most comprehensive partnerships for a property coming back into the marketplace after a long dormant period. SlamBall’s live late night viewership window on ESPN and ESPN2 scored with audiences 18-45 across the country, delivering with the key demo brands crave. SlamBall’s average of 105,000 was on par with other live broadcasts in the time slot.

-SlamBall’s launch led to immediate international interest as well, with games being shown live through the ESPN partnership in Latin America (on DTC on Star+); in the Caribbean (via ESPN & the affiliate-authenticated ESPN App), and in Australia, New Zealand and the Pacific Islands (via ESPN & the affiliate-authenticated Watch ESPN). Additionally, SlamBall China launched its broadcast on Douyin, Kuaishou, WeChat Videos, Xiaohongshu, and Weibo, with over 25 million views in the first few days.

-Additionally, SlamBall’s decision to use former athletes like Nate Robinson and Marshawn Lynch in its broadcasts alongside ESPN personality John Schriffen led to millions of additional digital views, making it one of the most talked about broadcasts not just of the summer, but of the year.

Gambling:

In its first few weeks SlamBall entered into a partnership with US Integrity which led to live gambling on games after just two weeks of play, thanks to its partnership with Circa Sports. The almost unheard-of quick turnaround for launch live money gaming is a testament to the intense and vocal interest of a young audience, and SlamBall’s ability to build the sport’s relaunch with gaming applications top of mind.

Media:

SlamBall’s earned media coverage impressions for the six weeks were in the multi millions, with consistent coverage not just from the largest media platforms, but from some of the most influential and engaged social media influencers and athletes as well. SlamBall captured the attention of everyone from Snoop Dogg, to athletes (former and current) ranging from Pat McAfee, Jalen Brunson, Rex Chapman and Alex Caruso to Patrick Mahomes, Dez Bryant, Shawne Merriman and DeAndre Jordan, all of whom were engaged viewers for games on multiple nights, with posts they shared across social media. Traditional media ranging from CBS News to CNN to GQ to SI.com and USA Today all took note and shared the growing story of SlamBall as a property. SlamBall also resonated by building the stories of its amazing athletes and leadership, with features ranging from The Philadelphia Inquirer and Indianapolis Star to the New York Post.

-SlamBall’s weekly highlights service also delivered in excess of 1.5 million views, with highlights being shared by platforms such as the Chicago Tribune, the New York Daily News and the L.A. Times among many others.

Brand Partners:

In addition to Circa, SlamBall secured a growing number of brand partners as the season built momentum and interest and engagement grew. They included Old Trapper as a Founding Partner, and Launch Hydrate, The PBR, Hakkasan, Betr, SunnyD vodka seltzer, MaxAir, and Hertz as supporting partners. A number of additional partnerships are in discussions to be announced in the coming weeks.

Website:

SlamBall’s website traffic exceeded expectations with over 400,000 visitors during the period. Users again were largely in the 19-30 demo and came from as many as 30 different countries.

In May, SamBall’s return became official when a new Series A round of funding of $11 million was announced. Led by IA Sports Ventures and Eberg Capital, both of which are co-owners of the Miami Marlins, among other investments. Others include: David Blitzer and David Adelman, both of Harris Blitzer Sports & Entertainment; Fanatics founder Michael Rubin; VC investor Gary Vaynerchuk; NBA player Blake Griffin; Sacramento Kings investor Kevin Nagle; Lloyd Danzig of Sharp Alpha; Legends Growth Enterprises; Red Games CEO Brian Lovell; attorney Jesse Sharf, Accelerate Sports; and VC investor Eric Manlunas.

Attendance

This was the first time in the history of the sport that larger scale fan attendance factored into the SlamBall experience. Cox Pavilion was scaled for 2,500 seats for each of the multiple night sessions throughout the six week season. The league reached capacity six times during the run, and averaged over 80% for the season, exceeding expectations by over 15%. Fans were in attendance from over 20 states and countries as far away as China, Germany, Denmark, Canada and the UK.

Series 6:

The Mob finished a perfect 18-0 to win SlamBall’s return championship on Thursday night, August 24 in front of the second straight sold-out crowd of 2,500 at Las Vegas’ Cox Pavilion, downing the Lava, 49-36. Darius Clark (Blue Springs, MO) led the Mob’s offensive onslaught, earning SlamBall Playoffs Most Valuable Player honors with 45 total points in the two playoff wins.

Mob stopper and team captain Gage Smith (Elizabeth, CO) was named SlamBall League: Series 6 Most Valuable Player and Defensive Player of the Year. The Wrath’s Ty McGee (Littleton, CO) earned Offensive Player of the Year honors and Mob gunner Cam Hollins (Avon, IN) was selected 5th Man of the Year, while the Mob’s Brendan Kirsch (Indianapolis, IN) was tabbed Coach of the Year.

Joining Smith and McGee on the All-SlamBall First Team were Mob gunner Darius Clark (Blue Springs, MO) and Slashers handler Tony Crosby II (Long Beach, CA). The All-SlamBall Second Team features Gryphons’ gunners KyShawn Jones (Danville, VA) and Justin Holmes (Roseville, CA), Mob handler Cameron Horton (Jacksonville, AL) and Buzzsaw stopper Tyquan Scott (Long Beach, NY).

SlamBall Broadcast

SlamBall League: Series 6 Adds International Broadcast Distribution

SlamBall, the fast-paced, gravity-defying sport that combines elements of basketball, football, hockey and acrobatics, today announced its first set of International Broadcast Distribution partners for the remainder of the season, bringing the re-start of the sport to a growing global audience in the millions much faster than anticipated and outpacing the interest of virtually all growing sports in North America.

“The interest and growth of a fan base is expanding much quicker than we had ever expected in just three weeks, and is reflective of the massive social engagement we are seeing around the world,” said Mason Gordon, SlamBall co-founder. “In addition, our partners with SlamBall China are seeing very rapid growth and adoption on platforms there, all of which is reflective of the action and athleticism we are seeing improve with each passing week as we head towards next week’s championship.”

SlamBall is now being distributed via ESPN in Latin America (on DTC on Star+); in the Caribbean (via ESPN & the affiliate-authenticated ESPN App), and in Australia, New Zealand and the Pacific Islands (via ESPN & the affiliate-authenticated Watch ESPN). Additionally, SlamBall China has officially launched its broadcast on Douyin, and has already seen several million views in the first few days..

SlamBall is back Thursday, Aug. 10 at 8:00 p.m. PT/11:00 p.m. ET on ESPN2 in the United States, while the SlamBall playoffs begin on Tuesday, August 15, at 8:00 p.m. ET/11:00 p.m. ET, live on ESPN2. The semifinals and championship game take place on Thursday, August 17, at 8:00 p.m. ET/11:00 p.m. ET on ESPN.

View Top 10 Plays From This Past Weekend Here: https://vimeo.com/852238226/467a9699eb?share=copy

View Standings Here: https://slamballleague.com/standings/

View Stats Here: https://slamballleague.com/slamball-stats/

SlamBall is back Thursday, Aug. 10 at 8:00 p.m. PT/11:00 p.m. ET on ESPN2.

SlamBall’s two-year ESPN partnership will combine to air more than 40 hours of live SlamBall programming across five weekends, culminating August 15-17 with the SlamBall Playoffs and SlamBall Championship Game.

CIRCA-Keenan-Love-vs Tamyrik Fields (Photo by Bryan Steffy-Getty Images for SlamBall)-2800

Circa Sports Named Founding Partner Of SlamBall League

SlamBall, the fast-paced, gravity-defying sport that combines elements of basketball, football, hockey and acrobatics, today announced that Circa Sports has been named a Founding Partner of SlamBall League. Play resumes this Thursday to Sunday from Cox Pavilion in Las Vegas at 8:00 p.m. EDT/5:00 p.m. PDT on ESPN+.

“We have always believed that SlamBall was a tailor made property for sports gambling, and Circa Sports coming on at this early juncture further validates and expedites this critical part of our business plan,” said Mason Gordon, SlamBall co-creator and CEO. “Our expansive partnership with Derek Stevens and the team will be amplified this upcoming weekend when live gambling on SlamBall will take place for the first time.”

“We are excited to be one of the founding partners of SlamBall,” Derek Stevens, CEO of Circa Resort & Casino. “We’re happy to have them included in the continuously growing sports scene in Las Vegas and we look forward to seeing their growth. We also can’t wait to put up lines for the games on Thursday and seeing the action that comes in!”

Circa Sports will provide legal gambling lines for all remaining sessions. They join Old Trapper as SlamBall’s first two Founding Partners

SlamBall’s two-year ESPN partnership will combine to air more than 40 hours of live SlamBall programming across five weekends, culminating August 15-17 with the SlamBall Playoffs and SlamBall Championship Game.

John Schriffen, Jon Dorenbos and Stormy Buonantony to Call Second Weekend of SlamBall on ESPN

SlamBall, the fast-paced, gravity-defying sport that combines elements of basketball, football, hockey and acrobatics, today announced that John Schriffen, Jon Dorenbos and Stormy Buonantony will call the Second Weekend of SlamBall League: Series 6 this Thursday to Sunday on ESPN2 and ESPN +. The games will be aired live from Cox Pavilion in Las Vegas beginning Thursday at 8:00 p.m. EDT/5:00 p.m. PDT on ESPN2.

“One of our goals is to pair John Schriffen, who has already emerged as the voice of SlamBall on play-by-play, with a fun and engaged list of personalities throughout the season, and we welcome Jon Dorenbos and Stormy Buonantony to the mix,” said Mason Gordon, SlamBall creator and CEO. “Nate Robinson and LaMonica Garrett were outstanding in week one, and we are looking forward to adding Jon and Stormy to our broadcasting team in Week Two.”

Schriffen joined ESPN in August 2020 to call the platform’s coverage of the KBO (Korea Baseball Organization). He is now heard as a play-by-play voice across ESPN’s coverage of XFL, college football, basketball, softball and baseball, NBA G-league and Summer League and MLB. Schriffen also hosts ESPN’s presentation of the NBA Draft Combine. Prior to ESPN, Schriffen was an announcer at NFL Network and CBS Sports.

Dorenbos is making his SlamBall debut after a dual career as a two-time NFL All-Pro long snapper (which included 11 years as a member of the Philadelphia Eagles) and an accomplished magician. He is a frequent performer in Las Vegas, and was a finalist for America’s Got Talent in 2019.

Buonantony is a sideline reporter for ESPN college football and XFL, just concluding her third season across ESPN platforms. She is also a studio host for VSIN, The Sports Betting Network in Las Vegas, Nev. Stormy spent two years as the rink-side reporter and host for the Vegas Golden Knights on AT&T SportsNet. Her career has included stints as the in-stadium reporter for the Carolina Panthers for two seasons, the Mountain West’s reporter and host for three years on the conference-owned digital network, and as a sideline reporter for Campus Insiders.

SlamBall’s two-year ESPN partnership will combine to air more than 30 hours of live SlamBall programming across five weekends, culminating August 15-17 with the SlamBall Playoffs and SlamBall Championship Game.

Schriffen, Robinson, Garrett, Jackson to Call Opening Weekend of SlamBall This Weekend on ESPN

SlamBall, the fast-paced, gravity-defying sport that combines elements of basketball, football, hockey and acrobatics, today announced that John Schriffen, Nate Robinson, LaMonica Garrett and Sean “Inches” Jackson will call the Opening Weekend of SlamBall League: Series 6 this Friday to Sunday on ESPN and ESPN +. The inaugural weekend’s game will be aired live from Cox Pavilion in Las Vegas beginning Friday at 7:00 p.m. EDT/4:00 p.m. PDT on ESPN.

“The combination of these four accomplished professionals really will set the stage for the reintroduction of SlamBall to the world,” said Mason Gordon, SlamBall creator and CEO. “John is clearly on the rise as a play-by-play voice, while Nate, LaMonica and Inches are personalities who can talk strategy and storytelling about what many of the millions of fans tuning in may be seeing live for the first time. We couldn’t be more pleased with this mix to get us going.”

Schriffen joined ESPN in August 2020 to call the platform’s coverage of the KBO (Korea Baseball Organization). He is now heard as a play-by-play voice across ESPN’s coverage of XFL, college football, basketball, softball and baseball, NBA G-league and Summer League and MLB. Schriffen also hosts ESPN’s presentation of the NBA Draft Combine. Prior to ESPN, Schriffen was an announcer at NFL Network and CBS Sports. A graduate of Dartmouth College, Schriffen was a pitcher on the school’s baseball team his freshman year before serving as the voice of the Big Green athletics, calling baseball, basketball and hockey games on the school’s radio network.

Robinson, perhaps the prototype for today’s SlamBall athlete, was a standout football and basketball player at the University of Washington, before embarking on a long NBA career (while also getting a tryout for the NFL’s Seattle Seahawks). The 21st pick in the 2005 NBA Draft, the 5-foot-9-inch point guard played for the New York Knicks, Boston Celtics, Oklahoma City Thunder, Golden State Warriors, Chicago Bulls, Denver Nuggets, Los Angeles Clippers and New Orleans Pelicans. He is also the NBA’s first three-time slam dunk champion.

Garrett utilized his experience as one of SlamBall’s greatest athletes to transition seamlessly into a storied acting career. The San Francisco native, who is named after former Raiders quarterback Daryle Lamonica, played linebacker at Central State University in Ohio before moving to Los Angeles to begin an acting career while starring in the first seasons of SlamBall. He became the league’s leading scorer and one of four players announced for the All-SlamBall Team, and then landed a role in a SlamBall-themed episode on the hit show One Tree Hill. That experience was the catalyst for an acting career that has seen him featured on shows such as Sons of Anarchy, Designated Survivor, and most recently the hit series 1883. All the while, he has maintained his strong ties to SlamBall leadership and will make his sports broadcasting debut this weekend.

From his pivotal role in the initial SlamBall seasons to his continued excellence as an elite dunker, Jackson has seamlessly transitioned into a flourishing acting career, appearing in a wide variety of basketball-featured promotions and commercials.

SlamBall’s two-year ESPN partnership begins on Opening Night, as SlamBall relaunches live from Las Vegas on July 21 from 7-9 p.m. EDT. ESPN, ESPN2 and ESPN+ will combine to air more than 40 hours of live SlamBall programming across five weekends, culminating August 15-17 with the SlamBall Playoffs and SlamBall Championship Game.

SlamBall Signs Comprehensive Partnership with U.S. Integrity

Today U.S. Integrity (“USI”) announced a comprehensive partnership with SlamBall, the fast-paced, gravity-defying sport that combines elements of basketball, football, hockey and trampoline, as they aim to protect the integrity of its sport and future events. The 2023 SlamBall League: Series 6, will begin July 21 at Cox Pavilion in Las Vegas and runs for seven weeks, live on ESPN, ESPN2 and ESPN+.

U.S. Integrity will provide integrity monitoring services via its proprietary dashboard to SlamBall that will encompass data intelligence and fraud prevention. U.S. Integrity conducts analyses across dozens of data sets to proactively identify irregular contest-level & wagering patterns.

“We fully endorse this partnership as the growth of SlamBall and its appeal to fans will reach new heights heading into the 2023 season. The expectation is as our sport evolves, so will sports betting markets. The timing is right to put the correct process in place with a major focus being integrity protection and fraud prevention.” said Mason Gordon, SlamBall co-creator and CEO.

“U.S. Integrity is proud to partner with SlamBall as wagering interest on their events continues to grow across the regulated sports wagering market,” says Matthew Holt, U.S. Integrity’s CEO & co-founder. He continued, “U.S. Integrity’s mission is to provide conflict-free, best in class insights & compliance solutions to our clients. We’re thrilled to collaborate with the outstanding team at SlamBall. There’s a commitment to integrity from all our partners, and this partnership with SlamBall validates that standard.”

SlamBall Establishes Athlete Health and Safety Protocols for 2023 SlamBall League: Series Six

SlamBall, the fast-paced, gravity-defying sport that combines elements of basketball, football, hockey and trampolines, today announced its health and safety protocol program for its athletes for the coming 2023 SlamBall League: Series Six, which will begin July 21 at Cox Pavilion in Las Vegas. The protocols are designed to make sure all athletes are receiving the best proactive health and wellness care and prevention without sacrificing any of their elite skills.

“We are a legitimate sport first and foremost, and the health and safety of our exemplary athletes is priority one,” said Mason Gordon, SlamBall co-founder. “Having been in and around SlamBall since its inception, our leadership team knows the risks and the challenges these athletes are dealing with every minute they are on the court.e are proud to have been able to address the concerns and challenges of such a high flying, action packed sport by making sure we have the right protocols and best practices in place. This makes sure that our sport is beyond reproach for anyone participating or watching as we head toward the launch on July 21.”

-All players protective equipment include: Elbow pads, knee pads, padded combat shirt, ankleroll guards/ankle braces, and custom padded and fitted head gear.
-In the event of a blow to the head SlamBall’s on-site certified athletic training team will put players through an extensive concussion evaluation protocol, and without exception players must be medically cleared before returning to play or practice.
-Players must undergo daily health and safety screenings with trained medical personnel. Injury status is updated daily and shared with coaches and executives.
-Timeouts for any injury during play will be at the discretion of the medical staff once the officials have stopped play. Players can return only when cleared by the SlamBall medical team.
-In addition to the seven-man roster, there are four players on a taxi squad who are available to any team needing to add a player due to injury. A coach may also elect to keep a player from the taxi squad in this situation and assign a different player to IR as he rehabs and returns to health. The safety of active players remains the priority, with the rosters adjusting for athletes that are cleared and able to play.
-No athletes will be able to participate in practice or games unless cleared by the medical team.
-Updates on injuries will be provided during the regular season basis as needed and as approved by medical personnel and in accordance with HIPAA rules.

SlamBall recently announced an exclusive, two-year national broadcast partnership with ESPN for the 2023 and 2024 seasons. The partnership begins on Opening Night, as SlamBall relaunches live from Las Vegas on July 21 from 7-9 p.m. EDT. ESPN, ESPN2 and ESPN+ will combine to air more than 30 hours of live SlamBall programming across five weekends, culminating August 17-19 with the SlamBall Playoffs and SlamBall Championship Game.

Old Trapper Named Founding Partner of SlamBall League: Series 6

Old Trapper announced that they are the Founding Partner and Official Beef Jerky of SlamBall League: Series 6. Throughout the 2023 season, Old Trapper product, messaging, and signage will be incorporated on broadcast, digital, and social media platforms of SlamBall on ESPN.

The partnership begins on Opening Night, as SlamBall relaunches live from Las Vegas on July 21 from 7-9 p.m. EDT. ESPN, ESPN2 and ESPN+ will combine to air more than 30 hours of live SlamBall programming across five weekends, culminating August 17-19 with the SlamBall Playoffs and SlamBall Championship Game. All games will be played at Cox Pavilion in Las Vegas.

As Founding Partner of SlamBall League: Series 6, Old Trapper will be highlighted as the Official Beef Jerky in broadcast deliverables. This includes TV visible signs during the 96 games at Cox Pavilion and 62 hours on the ESPN ecosystem. Old Trapper will also be featured on the starting lineups of each game. Old Trapper signage will appear on five minutes of LED rotations per game and on four 30-second spots per broadcast. Old Trapper will have product placement on the SlamBall broadcast desk and in post-game player interviews. For digital and social integrations, Old Trapper’s logo will be permanently integrated into SlamBallLeague.com. The company will also serve as the Presenting Sponsor of Dunk of the Summer, which will be featured on Instagram and voted on by fans.

“We are very excited to announce the start of our partnership with SlamBall,” said Robert Leary, Chief Marketing Officer of Old Trapper. “As Founding Partner and Official Beef Jerky of the 2023 season, we look forward to fueling the fire of champions with bold flavors and protein-packed goodness. Just as SlamBall combines high-flying athleticism with raw power, Old Trapper Beef Jerky complements the grit and determination of these athletes, delivering hearty sustenance to fuel their relentless pursuit of greatness.”

Tickets Now On Sale For SlamBall League: Series 6, July 21 – August 14 at Cox Pavilion in Las Vegas

SlamBall, the fast-paced, gravity-defying sport that combines elements of basketball, football, hockey and trampolines, today announced that tickets are now on sale for its 2023 SlamBall League Series 6, which includes 30 sessions over four consecutive weekends beginning on Friday, July 21 (7 p.m. ET / 4 p.m. PT, ESPN)). Tickets are now available at https://www.unlvtickets.com/eventInfo/spe/840/slamball/ with all games held at Cox Pavilion in Las Vegas. Information on playoff tickets will be announced at a later date.

Tickets are priced at $30 for daily general admission, $50 for reserved and $125 for a limited number of VIP tickets, including post-game, on-court experiences with players and coaches.

Each competition day will feature two sessions of three games per session, with four teams battling in each session and all eight teams competing each night. The winners of the first two games of each session will then meet in the Main Event to determine the winner of the session.

Today’s announcement comes on the heels of Wednesday’s news that ESPN, ESPN2 and ESPN+ will combine to televise more than 60 hours of regular season action and all playoff games as well as the finalas part of an exclusive, two-year national broadcast partnership for the 2023 and 2024 seasons.

“Las Vegas has emerged as a sports mecca, and we take great pride in being a distinctive addition to the city’s thriving sports scene,” said Mason Gordon, SlamBall creator and co-founder. “SlamBall is a sport that truly comes alive when experienced in person. There is simply nothing else comparable. The games are a thrilling display of non-stop, high-speed action from end to end, showcasing the extraordinary athleticism of our players. Being just a few feet away allows you to fully appreciate their remarkable skills. And we designed the schedule to make sure SlamBall fans can witness every team and player every night.”

Opening night will feature a battle between legacy teams MOB, led by Gage Smith (Elizabeth, CO) against the Rumble and its top star Bakari Copeland (Decatur, GA) and legendary Coach Ken Carter. Other games on Opening Night include the Slashers with captain Tony Crosby II (Inglewood, CA.) vs. Lava with Bryce Moragne (Tampa, FL) and Nathaniel Harris (Hammond,IN); Wrath with Christian Gray (Riverside, CA) vs. Gryphons and Justin Holmes (Roseville, CA); and Ozone with Bryan Bell-Anderson (Sarasota, FL) vs. Buzzsaw and Michael Kolawole (Rowlett, TX).

In the ensuing weeks, matchups will be announced several days prior to each week’s sessions, which following opening weekend will be held each Thursday, Friday, Saturday and Sunday through August 13. Each regular season competition date will feature two sessions, with all eight squads taking the court each night.

The full schedule, subject to change, with session start times and TV coverage is as follows:

Regular Season (two sessions per date, all times PT):

  • Fri, July 21, 4 p.m., ESPN
  • Fri, July 21, 6:30 p.m., ESPN+
  • Sat, July 22, 5 p.m., ESPN+
  • Sat, July 22, 7:30 p.m., ESPN+
  • Sun, July 23, 2:30 p.m., ESPN+
  • Sun, July 23, 5 p.m., ESPN+
  • Thu, July 27, 5:30 p.m., ESPN+
  • Thu, July 27, 8 p.m., ESPN
  • Fri, July 28, 5 p.m., ESPN+
  • Fri, July 28, 7:30 p.m., ESPN+
  • Sat, July 29, 5 p.m., ESPN+
  • Sat, July 29, 7:30 p.m., ESPN+
  • Sun, July 30, 2:30 p.m., ESPN+
  • Sun, July 30, 5 p.m., ESPN+
  • Thu, August 3, 5:30 p.m., ESPN+
  • Thu, August 3, 8 p.m., ESPN2
  • Fri, August 4, 5 p.m., ESPN+
  • Fri, August 4, 7:30 p.m., ESPN+
  • Sat, August 5, 5 p.m., ESPN+
  • Sat, August 5, 7:30 p.m., ESPN+
  • Sun, August 6, 2:30 p.m., ESPN+
  • Sun, August 6, 5 p.m., ESPN+
  • Thu, August 10, 5:30 p.m., ESPN+
  • Thu, August 10, 10 a.m., ESPN2
  • Fri, August 11, 5 p.m., ESPN+
  • Fri, August 11, 7:30 p.m., ESPN+
  • Sat, August 12, 5 p.m., ESPN+
  • Sat, August 12, 7:30 p.m., ESPN+
  • Sun, August 13, 2:30 p.m., ESPN+
  • Sun, August 13, 5 p.m., ESPN+

Playoffs

  • Tue, August 15, SlamBall Playoffs, TBD, ESPN+
  • Thu, August 17, SlamBall Championship Game, 8 p.m., ESPN2

For more information about SlamBall visit http://www.slamballleague.com.

Showtime Sports Announces Bonded By Ball: Inside The Obl, A Documentary Series Chronicling OBL

SHOWTIME Basketball announces BONDED BY BALL: INSIDE THE OBL, a four-part documentary series chronicling the inaugural season of the Ones Basketball League (OBL). All four episodes of the series premiere consecutively on SHOWTIME EXTREME starting at 10 p.m. ET/PT on Friday, July 28, and all episodes will be available on demand and on streaming for Paramount+ with SHOWTIME subscribers on the day of premiere.

Founded in 2022 by seven-time NBA All-Star and Hall of Famer Tracy McGrady and award-winning sports business executive and entrepreneur Jeffrey Pollack, OBL is an elite one-on-one competition series designed to discover and spotlight the best one-on-one players around the world and celebrate the competitive spirit of basketball.

“BONDED BY BALL takes you on a journey with incredible athletes you haven’t met before and also gives some insight into my life story,” McGrady said. “When I look at these players, I know how it feels to be overlooked and undervalued. When an opportunity is given, what are you going to do with it? These guys are out to prove something, and we are proud to bring their stories to a larger audience for the first time.”

“Tracy and the OBL fit the ethos of SHOWTIME Basketball, and BONDED BY BALL is a reflection of the type of boundary-pushing and innovative content we strive to create,” said Brian Dailey, SVP, Sports Programming & Content at SHOWTIME. “If you look at our roster, it’s full of Hall of Famers and champions who are open to sharing their experiences, just as Tracy has with this league and through this series.”

The documentary series is an intimate look at the league’s three-month tour across the U.S. during its 2022 season, highlighting competitions in Houston, Brooklyn, Washington D.C., Los Angeles and Las Vegas. The series, guided by McGrady, reveals the compelling and often heartbreaking stories of the star players. By uncovering each athlete’s unique personality, determination, style and circumstances, the series is an in-depth exposé on the collective joy and disappointment that comes with both basketball and life.

“One-on-one is the essence of basketball and Tracy’s vision for the game opens up a new world of storytelling,” said Pollack. “We are creating a unique stage for amazing athletes who deserve a chance to shine in the spotlight and our ultimate ambition is global. Fans can be with us at the start, enjoy a behind-the-scenes look and get closer to Tracy thanks to SHOWTIME.”

In each of the cities on the tour, 32 players compete for a chance to win $10,000. The winner in each city takes home the cash prize, and the top three players from each city earn a spot in the OBL Finals in Las Vegas and the opportunity to compete for the grand prize of $250,000.

The featured competitors include:

  • George Beamon, Roslyn, N.Y./Manhattan College (Los Angeles Winner)
    31, co-captain and two-time First Team All-MAAC at Manhattan College. He averaged 18.8 points and 6.5 rebounds per game in 2013-14 after a season-ending injury the previous year. Won OBL Los Angeles Regional to claim the $10,000 prize and qualify for OBL Finals.
  • Isaiah Brown, Queens, N.Y./SUNY Potsdam (New York Winner)
    25, nicknamed “Leaky Roof,” played at SUNY Potsdam. The sharpshooting lefty averaged 24.2 points per game in 2019-20 at Potsdam after transferring from Missouri State-West Plains. Won OBL New York Regional to claim the $10,000 prize and qualify for OBL Finals.
  • John Jordan, Houston/TAMU-Corpus Christi (Houston Winner)
    29, arrived from Romania just in time to compete in the OBL. He’s one of the most decorated players in Texas A&M-Corpus Christi history, totaling more than 1,500 points, 500 rebounds and 500 assists in his TAMU-CC Athletics Hall of Fame career. He played overseas and in the G-League, where he won the dunk contest in 2017. Won the OBL Houston Regional to claim the $10,000 prize and qualify for OBL Finals.
  • Matt Kiatipis, Newmarket, Ontario/Simon Fraser University (Houston Runner-Up)
    21, played a year for Simon Fraser University in his native Canada. He then turned his focus to other basketball pursuits, including a strong social media presence, park takeovers and dunk videos. The youngest OBL Finals qualifier, “M.K.” took second in the Houston Regional.
  • Kevin Kuteyi, Lanham, Md./Gannon University and Chowan University (DMV Winner)
    29, had one of the more vocal rooting sections at The St. James. In two collegiate seasons, one at Gannon University and one at Chowan University, he averaged 12 points per game and shot 40% from deep. “Uncle Skoob” came into the OBL DMV Regional as the No. 8 seed and had to win a play-in to get into the quarterfinals. Won the OBL DMV Regional to claim the $10,000 prize and qualify for OBL Finals.

“When you see that pain I’m putting in, it’s because I missed out on an opportunity,” OBL finalist George Beamon expresses in BONDED BY BALL: INSIDE THE OBL. “I want to get that breakout that I should’ve got. That ain’t stopping me. It’s motivating me.”

Beamon is not alone. The OBL is designed to create opportunities for gifted athletes who can earn a chance to shine on a national stage. McGrady’s devotion to nurturing and motivating the hundreds of players in the OBL comes from a shared place of perseverance and dedication.

BONDED BY BALL: INSIDE THE OBL is co-directed by Eric W. Newman and Rashad Floyd, and executive produced by Stephen Espinoza, Dailey, Newman, McGrady, Pollack and Elissa Grabow. Newman also directed and produced SHOWTIME documentaries KEVIN GARNETT: ANYTHING IS POSSIBLE and BE NOW: INSIDE THE 2022 IVERSON CLASSIC, and the show ALL THE SMOKE WITH MATT BARNES AND STEPHEN JACKSON.

This documentary series adds to the award-winning rolodex of documentaries and docuseries from SHOWTIME Basketball, including GOLIATH, STAND, Kevin Durant’s NYC POINT GODS, LeBron James’ SHUT UP AND DRIBBLE, KOBE BRYANT’S MUSE, QUIET STORM: THE RON ARTEST STORY, PASSION PLAY: RUSSELL WESTBROOK and KEVIN GARNETT: ANYTHING IS POSSIBLE. SHOWTIME Basketball is also comprised of shows including ALL THE SMOKE WITH MATT BARNES & STEPHEN JACKSON, KG CERTIFIED WITH KEVIN GARNETT, TICKET & THE TRUTH, WHAT’S BURNIN’ hosted by Rachel Nichols, HEADLINERS WITH RACHEL NICHOLS and THE ARIEL HELWANI BASKETBALL SHOW.

Ones Basketball League and Dunk Media Partner to Bring 1-on-1 Basketball Content to Young Fans

The Ones Basketball League (OBL), founded by Basketball Hall of Famer and entrepreneur Tracy McGrady, today announced a content and distribution partnership with Dunk Media LLC, a leading digital property, founded by creative entrepreneur Eliot Robinson, with a fanbase of more than 13 million basketball enthusiasts across TikTok, Instagram, YouTube, and Snapchat.

Starting in July 2023, Dunk will produce and distribute existing and new content highlighting the OBL and its successful proof-of-concept season that took place in the summer of 2022. Dunk will also work with McGrady to create new content focused on celebrating the one-on-one game, which McGrady calls “the essence of basketball.” In total, OBL-related content on Dunk is expected to drive over 50 million video views in the second half of 2023.

Tracy McGrady, Founder of OBL, said, “OBL celebrates the best one-on-one players in the world and highlights the essence of our great global game. This new partnership with Dunk will put a spotlight on the best moments from our pilot season and the incredible skill and talent of our elite players.”

Jeffrey Pollack, Co-Founder of OBL, said “Our proof-of-concept season was a smash hit with both players and fans, and Dunk will help re-energize and expand the OBL community as we put the pieces in place for a re-launch in 2024.”

Dunk Media CEO Josh Gotthelf said “The one-on-one game, and OBL’s unique format, are a perfect fit for the way today’s young audience consumes basketball content. We’re looking forward to telling the OBL’s many stories and creating new emotional connections to our community.”

Dunk will produce and distribute a wide range of engaging basketball content, including highlights, behind-the-scenes footage, player interviews, and insightful analysis that will provide an unprecedented glimpse into the world of OBL.

SlamBall, ESPN Announce Exclusive Two-Year Broadcast Partnership for the 2023 and 2024 Seasons

SlamBall, the fast-paced, gravity-defying sport that combines elements of basketball, football, hockey and trampolines, today announced an exclusive, two-year national broadcast partnership with ESPN for the 2023 and 2024 seasons. The partnership begins on Opening Night, as SlamBall relaunches live from Las Vegas on July 21 from 7-9 p.m. EDT. ESPN, ESPN2 and ESPN+ will combine to air more than 30 hours of live SlamBall programming across five weekends, culminating August 17-19 with the SlamBall Playoffs and SlamBall Championship Game. All games will be played at Cox Pavilion in Las Vegas, with ticket sales beginning on June 27.

“ESPN’s multi-year commitment to SlamBall is further validation of the enormous appeal and growth potential of our sport,” said SlamBall creator and CEO Mason Gordon. “The level of interest in our hybrid team sport not just in the U.S., but across the world, has been beyond our expectations for the 2023 season. It’s clear that this is the best talent we have had in the sport’s history.”

“Mason and I couldn’t help but respond to the #BringBackSlamBall clamor,” said SlamBall co-founder Mike Tollin. “Live sports dominate the airwaves these days and audiences are looking for the next big thing. It’s a thrill to collaborate with ESPN in bringing this ground-breaking sport back to the world.”

“We are excited to partner with SlamBall, a league that combines elements of some of our fans’ favorite sports, resulting in a unique game that is sure to entertain viewers across ESPN’s platforms.” said Ashley O’Connor, Sr. Director, Programming & Acquisitions at ESPN.

The broadcast team, production details, and full broadcast schedule will be announced in the next few weeks. SlamBall has a long-term partnership with global premium experiences company Legends to provide e-commerce and on-site event retail; global, data-driven partnership strategy and execution; and business intelligence with actionable insights to drive revenue across all areas of the league. David Levy at Horizon Sports and Experiences is providing additional sponsorship sales support in the 2023 and 2024 seasons.

SlamBall recently closed an $11 million Series A round led by Roger Ehrenberg’s IA Sports Ventures and Eberg Capital (Owner and Advisory Board Member, Miami Marlins, Betr, Simplebet) with participation from strategic investors across sports, gaming, entertainment, and media. Strategic investors include David Blitzer (Harris Blitzer Sports & Entertainment, Cleveland Guardians, Crystal Palace), David Adelman (76ers, NJ Devils), Michael Rubin (Fanatics), Gary Vaynerchuk (VaynerX, Major League Pickleball), and Blake Griffin (Boston Celtics power forward and six-time NBA All-Star), as well as Kevin Nagle (Sacramento Kings), Lloyd Danzig (Sharp Alpha), Legends, Brian Lovell (Red Games), Jesse Sharf (Gibson Dunn), Accelerate Sports, and Eric Manlunas (Wavemaker Partners). Accelerate Sports provided investment banking services for the round.