NFL Eyes Flag Football for Olympics

With Opening Day right around the corner, the Oakland A’s will enter the 2022 season with a $ 33 million payroll, which ranks 29th out of the 30 teams. In 1991, however, the A’s had the highest payroll in MLB: $ 33 million.

The National Football League is looking to grow its international business to $ 1 billion annually over the next 10 years – and is using flag football to get to the end zone.

Damani Leech, COO of NFL International, says the league’s next phase of expansion is overseas, projecting 50 million more international consumers in the next decade, despite already having more than 150 million international and 180 million domestic fans.

To reach its goal, the league is pushing to add flag football to the 2028 Olympic Games.

“We’ve got to make the game matter,” Leech told CNBC. “If flag football becomes a sport [in the Olympics]more countries will invest in playing that sport. ”

  • American football was included as a demonstration sport in the 1932 Olympics but hasn’t been recognized since – it requires at least a one-week break between games of the same teams.
  • Reebok‘s lobby for the sport’s entrance failed in 1996.

The International Federation of American Football became recognized as a governing body in 2013 by the International Olympic Committee, which would likely help the sport’s newest bid to enter the competition.

Next Steps

Harvey Schiller, former executive director of the U.S. Olympic Committee, said the NFL will need to get more countries to play the gamespend time with the IOC members voting on the plan, and compete in international markets.

The decision reportedly won’t come until after the 2024 Olympics.

UEFA’s 2021 Champions League final brought in nearly 590 million more viewers than the 2022 Super Bowl, and Paris Saint-Germain president Nasser Al-Khelaifi wants to capitalize on the commercial opportunities and broader audiences that the event could bring.

“I can’t understand how the Super Bowl can feel bigger than the Champions League final,” Al-Khelaifi told The Athletic. “The final should be bigger.”

The 2021 Champions League final brought in 700 million viewers compared to the 2022 Super Bowl’s 112 million.

Al-Khelaifi highlighted that the US and Super Bowl have a mindset of “creativity and entertainment”When it comes to the event and suggested the Champions League do the same. One example was adding an opening ceremony. He also pushed for the consideration of new venues, markets, and formats.

The businessman was reportedly floating ideas before the European Club Association General Assembly last week.

  • The Champions League is expanding by four teams in 2024 to 36.
  • Beginning that year, media and commercial rights will be shared with the ECA, which is estimated to grow the commercial value of the men’s game by 39%.

Al-Khelaifi said the joint venture should have a creative and entertainment department to help make each match an event.

Football Vs. Football

The Super Bowl’s viewership has always been a mere fraction of global soccer events. The men’s and women’s World Cup and the UEFA Champions League all ranked higher than the Super Bowl for the most-watched sporting events in the world.

Following recent financial troubles, the England and Wales Cricket Board has nearly secured a major long-term paycheck.

The ECB is “closing in” on signing a lucrative media rights extension with Sky Sports, according to The Times. The current rights, signed in 2017 and running until 2024, reportedly pay out about $ 289 million annually.

  • The deal, which would run through 2034, would not yield much more than the current agreement’s annual price tag.
  • But the decade-long extension is a major plus for the organization.
  • As part of the new deal, the BBC will continue to receive some match rights – and potentially more of The Hundred tournament than the current agreement allows.

One potential snag? Buttoning up the deals with counties, which reportedly want to keep rights to matches Sky Sports doesn’t air so they can partner with social media streamers like Facebook.

Bouncing Back

The ECB is trying to battle back from the major losses it suffered due to the pandemic. For the year ending Jan. 31, 2021, the organization reported losses of $ 21.1 million.

CEO Tom Harrison, who will step down soon, hopes the deal could help stabilize the organization’s financial future, The Times reported.

Lipsweater, a Montreal-based NFT platform that specializes in hockey, is bringing its collectibles to the NHL in hopes of owning a franchise in the future.

Led by former Princeton goaltender Thomas Sychterz, Lipsweater has garnered the attention of more than 30 past and present NHL players following its launch earlier this year, including the Columbus Blue Jackets ‘Jake Bean and Alexandre Carrier, the Nashville Predators’ Eric Robinson, and Colorado Avalanche’s Nic Aube-Kubel.

Lipsweater’s eagerness to work with the NHL follows the league’s embrace of NFTs.

  • Last May, the New Jersey Devils became the first team to launch a collection.
  • The NHL and NHLPA signed an extension with Upper Deck that includes NFTs.
  • Last December, the Montreal Canadiens opened their NFT marketplace.
  • A month later, the New York Rangers launched their first NFT products.

Lipsweater has a head start toward owning an NHL franchise through its management of junior hockey team Plattsville Lakers through a DOA – the first in hockey.

NFTs in Sports

Dapper Labsthe creator of NBA Top Shotlaunched NFL All Day, a platform to buy and sell NFL-themed NFTs last November. In January, Dapper Labs launched UFC Strikea digital collectibles marketplace with products derived from the mixed martial arts promotion.

  • FIFA officials have clarified that SoFi Stadium’s dimensions are “too narrow” to meet the requirements necessary to hold a soccer game, but Stan Kroenke and the Los Angeles Rams are reportedly looking at options to widen it.
  • Gloria Football, a social scouting app for soccer, is now the titular sponsor of Spain’s newly professionalized women’s soccer league after pledging $ 11 million.
  • World Rugby has named Australia the “preferred candidate” to host the 2029 Women’s Rugby World Cup after being announced as the preferred bidder for the men’s 2027 World Cup last year.
  • On the Against the Rules podcast, Michael Lewis takes a look at what’s happened to fairness. Now, he’s tackling America’s expert problem and asking why is a country so good at creating experts so bad at taking their advice? Listen now. *

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Monday’s Answer
43% of respondents think the men’s and women’s Final Four should be in the same city.

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