Stoneman Douglas Hockey Team Hoists Stanley Cup

Marjorie Stoneman Douglas‘s hockey team received national notoriety last week after overcoming tremendous adversity while mourning the loss of their fellow students, teachers and coaches to win the State Hockey Championship. On Monday, the Florida Panthers recognized their achievement in a very unique way, letting them practice on the ice at the BB&T Center and bringing in hockey's ultimate prize, the Stanley Cup, for the players to hoist. "That's the last thing I was expecting, I was expecting maybe like Barkov or Bjugstad just to come on and skate with us, so that was the last thing I was expecting," senior Joey Zenobi said. They’ll tell you it was hard to feel on top of the world after feeling the sanctity of their world crumble around them following the mass shooting at the school. The Marjory Stoneman Douglas High School Hockey team won the state championship Friday night and are headed to the nationals. NBC 6 Sports Anchor Chris Fischer explains.  (Published Monday, Feb. 26, 2018) Yet, upset wasn’t just an emotion for the MSD Hockey team. They pulled off the upset as the last seed in the state tournament, overcoming the odds and the losses, the 17 Eagles players won 17 medals that they dedicated to the 17 victims. As a tribute to the players, the Panthers played host, but the Cup was the real star. "It was just unreal, they let us play around with it, lift it, brought it in the locker room," senior Matt Hauptman said. "It was just amazing, really special." School Safety Act Passes Fla. Senate, Moves to House MSD Hockey’s state championship has opened the door to the National Championship tournament in Minnesota at the end of the month, and the Panthers wanted them to know they have their backs. "There are no words to describe what those boys are feeling right now, it truly was a memorable experience that they will never forget," team manager Bonnie Hauptman said. Soaring high, the Eagles had the chance to hold Continue Reading

Sports franchises flock to Minneapolis marketing company

Working for the NHL’s Tampa Bay Lightning, Angelina Lawton found herself surprised at the number of professional sports teams who were still using PowerPoint, the PC presentation software, in presentations to potential sponsors. She hatched an idea for a company that would create customizable presentation designs for sports teams, which, at both the pro and collegiate level, have back offices filled with people ginning up sponsorships, ticketing promotions and fan engagement events. When she and her husband, Brian Lawton, the former general manager of the Lightning, moved to Minneapolis in 2010, she decided the time was right to get her idea off the ground and created Sportsdigita. And the time was right. With sports fans just starting to embrace smartphones and tablets at the time, pro and college teams quickly started using apps and digital media to reach them. And in the process of developing new ways to interact with fans, they also found themselves with new opportunities to generate revenue from sponsors. A new industry, dubbed “sales enablement,” was being born to help companies of all stripes navigate the quick opportunities that digital technology was producing. She said sales enablement will be a $5 billion industry by 2021. “People were looking for something more than PowerPoint. It’s very hot right now,” she said. “When we were coming in, people were like ‘yes we totally need this.’ We got in this [sports] vertical before it became hot.” In six years, Sportsdigita attracted more than 300 clients in professional and collegiate sports. Her agency created a customizable, interactive online platform called the “Digideck” that helps sales teams tailor their presentations to potential partners. “It’s a PowerPoint on steroids. That’s the best way to describe it,” she said. “These huge brands use our product to pitch big sponsorships, six-, seven-figure deals. We Continue Reading

Time Inc. selling off youth sports app to NBC Sports

Time Inc. is said to have reached an agreement to sell Sports Illustrated Play — a paid software app that enables parents, fans and players to track youth sports statistics and register teams for leagues and tournaments — to NBC Sports. Big layoffs are expected, including that of SI Play CEO Jeff Karp. Sources said that NBC will combine it with its own Sports Engine app. “It could be a good move for NBC as long as the software integrates all five legs covering tournament registration, scorekeeping, league management, team management and recruiting,” said Joe Mohen, CEO of Chimes Broadcasting. SI Play was hatched by ex-CEO of Time Joe Ripp, who snapped up three sites — League Athletics, Sports Sign Up and iScore — and combined them under the Sports Illustrated umbrella in mid-2015. By 2016, sports scorekeeping sites were getting snapped up by other players. Dick’s Sporting Goods bought GameChanger and NBC picked up the Sports Engine site. Said one source close to the situation, “When Sports Illustrated Play was launched by Ripp, it was a bold and first consolidation play in the space of youth sports. It was quickly followed by hundreds of millions of dollars of investment in competitive consolidation by Blue Star Sports [Jerry Jones], NBC Sports and Dick’s Sporting Goods. In other words, for one of the first times in ages, Time Inc. was boldly in a first-mover position to capture value and win a hot market.” But that changed once Rich Battista took over and the takeover rumors began swirling around Time Inc., which ultimately agreed to sell the whole company to Meredith for $2.8 billion. The NBCUniversal deal is said to be for all cash and will close before the Meredith deal finalizes early next year. Continue Reading

This is 40! Newser Rich O’Malley celebrates milestone birthday with one epic sports-spectating journey

I was a mess when I was young. I'm talking about in July, of course, when I was planning out my 40th birthday trip. I put together a jaunt around the Midwest to see a couple of baseball games. It's what I've always done: sat down with a map and schedules and chiseled away at reason until I've crammed in as much as a person can possibly do in 48 hours or five days or whatever amount of time I have. I check out not only baseball, but whatever other sports are in season … concerts … slices of Americana just off the highway (world's largest thermometer? Field of Dreams? Four Corners? Check, check, check). But this time … call it old age, call it laziness, call it exasperation at other failed 40th bash endeavors (we'll get to them) … I never looked at the NFL schedule. I NEVER LOOKED AT THE NFL SCHEDULE. Friends to whom I admitted this doubted my very core. Who WAS I anymore? Where was Rich? Putting together sports road trips is my raison d'etre, my love: I do them for fun! I do them knowing I'll never take them! "Oh, look, you could get four NFL games in one long weekend, Thursday through Monday" … "Oh, look, you can get Philly and Baltimore in one day" … that kind of thing. So when, exactly one week before my birthday, exactly three days before my departure, with all plane tickets and most car rentals and hotels already in hand, I saw that the New York Jets, my miserable scalawag of a favorite team, were the Monday Night Football game in Indianapolis, a mere four-hour drive from Detroit, where I was to spend the night … and THEN that the Sunday Night game was in Green Bay, three hours from where I was that day in Milwaukee … well, something broke. I had lost my way. I blew it. I was red-faced and red in the face. And I determined to turn a manageable stroll down baseball memory lane into a balls-out, screaming indictment of the age I was about to turn. I would no longer look at 40 as my death Continue Reading

The good and the bad: Dusty Baker’s possible impact as the new Nationals manager

After a quick two-year hiatus, Dusty Baker is back. He is set to take over a disappointing Washington Nationals team that failed to live up to high expectations in 2015. Over his 20-year managerial career, Baker has amassed a 1671-1504 record, good for a .526 winning percentage and three Manager of the Year awards. He’s had his lows too, highlighted by some historic collapses. Which Baker will the Nationals get in 2016: the good Dusty or the bad Dusty? RELATED: METS, TERRY COLLINS AGREE TO CONTRACT EXTENSION Experience Baker has been around the block quite a few times. An experienced manager, which the Washington Nationals desperately need after a failed one-year experiment with first-time manager Matt Williams, Baker is also one of the winningest. Now that he is an active skipper again, Baker ranks behind only Bruce Bochy as the manager with the most victories - and he only trails him by 31 games. All those wins have led to at least one division title for Baker with each team he has managed. Immediate impact Baker tends to work quickly. When he got his first shot to manage in 1993, the San Francisco Giants missed making the playoffs by one game despite finishing with the second best record in baseball at 103-59. It was a 31-win improvement from the prior season, but wasn't enough for San Fran to top the 104-win Braves in the NL West. In 2003, Baker inherited a very talented Cubs team. With a power pitching staff led by Matt Prior and Kerry Wood and some of the best hitters of the era in Sammy Sosa and Moises Alou, they won the NL Central and were an inning away from making the World Series for the first time since 1945 until Steve Bartman intervened. Baker took slightly longer to turn the Cincinnati Reds around, but in 2010 — his third year at the helm — they won the NL Central and made the postseason for the first time in 15 years. RELATED: STEVE BARTMAN AND OTHER FAN INTERFERENCES Continue Reading

Sad state of New York sports makes you want to root for Rex Ryan and NY Jets

So this is the state of New York sports as another pro football season begins on Sunday at 1 at MetLife Stadium: There is a chance, for the first time in 40 years, that we go two straight years without the Yankees and Mets and Giants and Jets making the playoffs. You’d say that we've turned into Cleveland, except Cleveland has LeBron back. You look back on the raging mediocrity we’ve witnessed over the past couple of years and that’s why the run that King Henrik Lundqvist and the Rangers made into the month of June seems even bigger and more exciting than it was at the time. I saw Lundqvist at a charity doubles match he played with John McEnroe and Novak Djokovic and the actor Edward Norton right before the start of the U.S. Open (and so you know, Lundqvist is really good at tennis, too), and asked him how long it took him to decompress after the way the Stanley Cup Final ended against the L.A. Kings. “It took a while,” he said. “You're never prepared for a season to end quite like that. It was hard.” Imagine how the rest of us felt. The Knicks didn’t make the playoffs, even in an Eastern Conference of the NBA that felt like the second division of English soccer. The Nets did, even got a game off LeBron in the second round of the playoffs, but a team built to win right now was able to win only a series against the Raptors. Who knows, maybe the Yankees, despite all odds, and despite being a dreary .500 team for the past 100 games, can still fall into a wild-card spot like a drunk falling off a bar stool. The Mets? Without a miracle run of their own, they won’t get to .500 again. So it is likely left to the Giants and Jets — one of them, or both of them — to save the year in sports, if either one of them has it in them. The Jets get a rookie quarterback and the Raiders at home on Sunday, a dream opponent for them, especially at a time when Jets fans are trying to figure out Continue Reading

Detroit Red Wings’ LCA locker room wows, but team could use renovations

The Detroit Red Wings may never want to surface.Their locker room at Little Caesars Arena sizes up at 25,000 square feet, has a full-service kitchen staffed for breakfast, lunch and dinner, hydrotherapy pools and a video room with theatre-quality recliners. Wednesday’s tour highlighted all the ways the new arena will seduce fans, players and entertainers with state-of-the-art everything, from a parking app to entry portals to the Via concourse to the facilities located below ground. The Wings’ locker room at Joe Louis Arena was renovated through the years but it’s a pale throwaway when measured against the vibrancy of the new place. At the Joe, the Wings had 5,900 square feet of space, forcing players into hallways for some exercises (hard to clear hurdles when there’s no room to build up speed).  More: Little Caesars Arena: Welcome to Detroit's new playground Sneak peek: Little Caesars Arena has its own little underground world At the Joe, if ice wasn’t available, players would drive to the arena, change into their gear, drive to whatever local rink was available, practice, then drive back to the Joe and change. With the Wings sharing LCA with the Pistons — and with the arena having been built with many a thought toward luring music artists to come perform — having ice in the main bowl would be a long shot on a non game day. That's why one of the many hallways in the new locker room leads to a practice facility — one that will also house Little Caesars teams, with seating for 300. The locker room proper is much bigger than the one at the Joe, with bigger stalls for skaters and goaltenders. The winged wheel graces the ceiling; a bold and smart choice given how many teams weave their logo into the carpet, then complain if it’s stepped on (the Wings never complained about that at the Joe, though. Still, if something shouldn’t be stepped on, don’t put it on Continue Reading

New York Daily News earns spot on APSE Top 10 newspaper sports website list for 2010

For the second year in a row, the Daily News sports website has cracked the list of the Top 10 best sports websites, as announced Saturday by the Associated Press Sports Editors. The News joins the Boston Globe, the Chicago Tribune, the Daily Oklahoman, the Ft. Lauderdale Sun Sentinel, the Milwaukee Journal-Sentinel, the New York Times, Orlando Sentinel, USA Today and the Washington Post in the prestigious Class A category, featuring the country's largest newspapers, with 2 million and over monthly visitors. "APSE is proud to recognize the nation's news organizations that are doing the best sports journalism work online today," said Michael A. Anastasi, Managing Editor of The Salt Lake Tribune and APSE contest chair. "Just as we have for years recognized the nation's best sports writing, sports reporting and print sports sections, honoring the best websites sets, and over time raises, the bar of excellence for the entire profession. "Congratulations to the journalists behind the innovation, dedication and hard work of all the websites honored." The website, overseen by senior online sports editor Andy Clayton, features the award-winning coverage of the Daily News sports staff, which has won numerous APSE Top 10 section and writing awards, and includes exclusive columns by our top-notch columnists, including Mike Lupica, blogs by the staff, live chats, video content, photo galleries, reader polls, power rankings, and, of course, breaking sports news. "The Daily News sports website is a must-read for New York sports fans and fans across the country," said Managing Editor/Sports Teri Thompson. "Our staff works diligently to bring the most current, provocative and exclusive content in the country to our readers, both in print and now on the website. In an era when sports fans expect breaking news to be delivered instantly and accurately, our website delivers."   This is the second year APSE has included a website category in its annual sports Continue Reading

App of the week: Two new Major League Baseball apps released for Android and iPhone

With spring training heating up and Opening Day around the corner, app creators are working hard to make sure you're updated on your favorite ballclubs -- even on the go. and ESPN have just released new baseball smartphone apps that provide up-to-the-minute scores, stats and news. Today, we'll take a look at ESPN Fantasy Baseball 2011 for the iPhone and MLB At Bat Lite for Android phones.ESPN Fantasy Baseball 2011Developer: ESPN Inc.Genre: SportsPrice: FreeESPN hits it out of the park with its updated iPhone app -- but just barely. The sports media giant listened to fan feedback from last year and have made some pretty knockout changes for the fantasy fan base. A quick victory off the bat for ESPN and the fans comes with the easy-to-use draft kit. Quickly pick up players in the draft and get your team ready for the upcoming season with just one or two clicks. An improved team management feature allows for starting, benching and claiming players and making easy trades throughout the league. Add to that message board usage and some pretty handy news and tweets from the league. That's the good. Now here's the catch. To get the exclusive content -- notes from spring training, alerts for who's going on the DL, video from ESPN and a lineup of the nine players you should have on your team – you’re going to have to drop $4.99. There are plenty of managers out there who are willing to pay for the premium, but we're not buying it. Pros: ESPN is giving fans a chance to really get down and dirty with the interactive features here. The mobile team manager works like a charm and an off-line draft client makes filling rosters an easy task.Cons: We're happy with the updated features but $4.99 is a bit much. For that amount, Derek Jeter should be giving you advice on which players to pick for your team.Verdict: In all honesty, the ESPN app is worth it for the fantasy baseball crowd. But do avoid dropping those bills on the extras and make your own judgment calls Continue Reading

Get set for NFL’s Super Bowl Sunday with these iPhone and iPod Touch apps for football fans

The NFL's exclusive deal with Sprint means iPhone owners are out of luck Super Bowl Sunday if they're looking for an official, all-encompassing app like baseball's state-of-the-art MLB At Bat. But never fear, football fanatics, there are still options out there for you. GRAB IT: Sportacular (free; Pro version is $1.99) and Pro Football Live (free; Plus version is $1.99): When you can't get to a TV, these apps provide play-by-play and live in-game stats so you'll always know the score. Both apps let you talk trash with opposing fans and make your own predictions, but we're partial to Sportacular, which adds the rest of the major sports and provides push notification alerts to let you know what's going on in the game even when the app is closed. [iTunes links: Sportacular | Pro Football Live] ESPN Radio ($2.99): ESPN has more than one useful app - ScoreCenter is a good alternative to Sportacular, if you're looking to experiment - but ESPN Radio is our favorite. You can't listen to the big game live on your iPhone, but you can listen to prognosticating pundits and frenzied fans all week long on ESPN's live radio broadcasts from more than a dozen major markets, including 1050 AM in New York, and stream more than 35 ESPN podcasts. To listen to WFAN, by the way, we use AOL Radio (free). [iTunes links: ESPN Radio | AOL Radio] NFL SuperFan (free): This one's just for DirecTV subscribers with the NFL Sunday Ticket plan. But if you've got it, this is an absolute must-have, allowing you to watch select games live on your iPhone or iPod Touch. [iTunes link] Weber's On the Grill ($4.99): Billed as "a mobile grilling companion," it's the perfect tool for tailgaters, with recipes and tips for a wide range of dishes on and off the grill - including desserts. It also includes a grill timer, and once you've chosen the dish you want to make, you can add the ingredients to the app's grocery-list section with a single touch. [iTunes link] Simple Soiree Continue Reading