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Coach K Tips Off Final Season as No. 9 Duke Beats No. 10 Kentucky, 79-71

The start of the college basketball season marks the beginning of the end for Coach Mike Krzyzewski, who is set to retire at the end of this season. At the Champions Classic at Madison Square Garden, freshman standout Paolo Banchero had 21 and Trevor Keels notched a game-high 25 to lead Duke over Kentucky 79-71 in the season-opener.

Kobe Bryant, LLC Files Multiple Trademarks for “Mamba Vino” Wine Brand

The Kobe Bryant brand appears to be moving into the world of wine and spirits. Four applications were submitted to the US Patent and Trademark Office on Nov. 5 by Kobe Bryant, LLC and signed by Vanessa Bryant for “Mamba Vino,” Boardroom has learned via trademark attorney Josh Gerben of Gerben Law. The requested trademarks are for “MAMBA VINO 2024,” “MAMBA VINO 24,” “MAMBA VINO 8,” and “MAMBA VINO.”

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BetMGM Becomes the Official Sports Betting Partner of Madison Square Garden 

BetMGM is in a New York state of mind. The sports betting company was among the nine selected as New York’s mobile betting partners on Monday, and on Tuesday they announced their partnership with MSG Sports and MSG Entertainment. As part of the deal, BetMGM will extend various opportunities for content integration and brand awareness at the iconic Madison Square Garden and becomes the official betting partner of the New York Knicks and the New York Rangers.  

UFC and The Memento Group Ink Multi-year Memorabilia Deal

UFC announced on Tuesday that The Memento Group (TMG) will serve as their global distributor of collectibles for years to come. TMG will produce limited-edition items – from fight-worn gloves and fight kits to fight night posters and photographs signed by UFC athletes. In addition, UFC and TMG will also jointly launch an online marketplace in January 2022. 

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Julius Randle Pledges $500 per Three-pointer to Bronx School

New York Knicks star Julius Randle pledged to donate $500 for each 3-pointer he makes for the remainder of the season to the Earl Monroe New Renaissance Basketball School as part of the #30 FOR 3! program, he announced on Tuesday. The funds will support the school’s literacy and math programs. The All-NBA forward made 171 triples during his 2020-2021 campaign.

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Minnesota Twins Select 10 Start-ups for Tech Accelerator

The Minnesota Twins are making some off-season moves. The team announced the first class of its Tech Accelerator program, conducted in partnership with the seed accelerator Techstars. Ten technology, sports, and entertainment startups will receive funding, mentoring, and various workshops to help them advance their missions. The program will culminate in a showcase in February 2022.

Aaron Rodgers, Allen Lazard, and Packers Fined for COVID Violations

The league announced on Tuesday that quarterback Aaron Rodgers, wide receiver Allen Lazard, and the Green Bay Packers each incurred fines related to violations of COVID protocols jointly agreed upon by the NFL and the NFL Players Association. The news comes in the wake of an investigation launched last week that revealed both players failed to wear masks in the team’s facility and had attended a Halloween party – individuals who are unvaccinated are not allowed to gather in groups greater than three per the protocols.

WWE, PGA TOUR to Serve as Key Advisors to NBCUniversal’s Startup Accelerator Program

The NBCUniversal SportsTech Accelerator offers start-ups and entrepreneurs the chance to receive world-class training as they seek to transform the world of competitive sports. Each organization selected receives individual mentorship from an advisor company throughout the duration of the accelerator’s run. And on Tuesday, the WWE and the PGA TOUR were announced as the most recent additions to an expert roster of partners, which currently includes NBC Sports, Sky Sports, GOLF, Comcast Spectator, US Cycling, US Ski and Snowboard, USA Swimming, and NASCAR.

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Personal Training App Ladder Raises $6.5M in Seed Round

The future of personal training is set to get a lot more accessible. LivWell Ventures led the successful funding round for the app, which provides users with the expertise of a personal trainer and the flexibility of an at-home fitness option. Investors include retired NFL wide receiver Danny Amendola and the founder of Athletic Brewing Bill Shufelt. 

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