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August 20, 2021

Topps SPAC Merger Called Off After Fanatics Baseball Card Bombshell

Topps Inc.’s intended merger with Murdick Capital via SPAC with an eye toward going public as been terminated. The curveball comes only hours after it was reported that Major League Baseball and the MLBPA would be dropping the sports cards and entertainment collectibles company for Fanatics by 2025.

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Nadal Confirms End of His 2021 Season Due to Leg Injury

Rafael Nadal is pulling out of the US Open due to a nagging foot injury, the Spanish tennis icon announced Friday. The chronic injury, which has plagued the 35-year-old his entire career and forced him to miss Wimbledon earlier this summer, means the four-time US Open champion will miss the remainder of the 2021 season.

Big Ten, Pac-12 , ACC Expected to Announce Alliance

College football fans can expect a big announcement from the Big Ten, Pac-12, and ACC on an upcoming scheduling alliance, Nicole Auerbach of The Athletic reported Friday morning. The formal announcement could happen as early as next week.

Chelsea, USMNT’s Christian Pulisic Tests Positive for COVID-19

Chelsea is preparing to square off against London rivals Arsenal in Premier League action this Sunday, but the club will be missing star attacker Christian Pulisic, who tested positive for COVID-19. The US international confirmed the news on his Instagram, noting that he is vaccinated and has no symptoms; however, he’s required to quarantine for 10 days per national guidelines.

Mavericks Hire LA Sparks Guard Kristi Toliver as Assistant Coach

The Dallas Mavericks have added two-time WNBA champ Kristi Toliver to Jason Kidd’s first coaching staff. ESPN’s Adrian Wojnarowski reports that the three-time All-Star guard will take on her new duties while continuing to play for the Los Angeles Sparks.

MLB and WWE Tag Team for Branded Partnership

Major League Baseball is teaming up with WWE for a multi-year partnership to create MLB-inspired WWE Championship title belts for fans of all 30 MLB clubs. The merchandising agreement, which is the first-ever between the WWE and a major US sports league, will feature belts with team logos that will be available starting in 2022.

Heading into Playoffs, PLL Reports Record Viewership

As the Premier Lacrosse League heads into the postseason, the league reported a 33% increase in viewership this season in comparison to 2019 numbers. The league has also seen improvement in its ticket sales and reports major social media engagement across multiple platforms.

NFL Hires Data Czar to Help Revolutionize Fan Engagement

The NFL has tapped its first-ever Data and Analytics Officer, Paul Bellew. A seasoned data vet, Ballew will lead a team at the league’s HQ dedicated to utilizing data to enhance fan experiences, improve operations, and help fuel future growth.