Here Come The World Cup Host Cities

Who says only Power 5 athletes benefit from NIL deals? Norfolk State’s Rayquan Smith, the self-proclaimed “King of NIL,” has signed 66 deals to date — more than anyone in the NIL era. Smith’s willingness to go outside the box with social media promotions has helped land deals with Champs Sports, Bodyarmor, Arby’s, and more.

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The high-stakes contest to host the 2026 FIFA World Cup has its first two winners.

Toronto and Vancouver have reportedly been selected to host 10 games between them in the 48-team global tournament.

  • Edmonton is reportedly out of the running, but mayor Amarjeet Sohi said that he has not heard from FIFA regarding a decision.
  • FIFA will announce the full slate of host cities from 22 candidates across Canada, the U.S., and Mexico on June 16.

A 2018 study found that North America could collectively see $5 billion in economic impact, or $3 billion to $4 billion in net impact after factoring in infrastructure investments. Individual cities could see $160 million to $620 million in economic activity, or $90 million to $480 million after subtracting public costs.

Candidate cities have produced even higher estimates, with Houston projecting over $1 billion in economic activity if selected, and Nashville predicting $700 million.

Qatar Cracks Down

Qatar, this year’s World Cup host, is threatening shocking and severe punishments for certain behaviors as it gears up for the first group-stage matches in November.

Fans caught with drugs could face the death penalty, in accordance with Qatari law.

Protestors could face five years in prison for stirring up public opinion.

Amnesty International, Human Rights Watch, and other groups have called on FIFA to set aside $440 million to compensate migrant workers in Qatar for human rights abuses during preparations for the World Cup.

The Oakland A’s proposed $12 billion waterfront development could hinge on an issue very familiar to Bay Area residents: housing. 

Negotiations between the city and team encompass a host of issues, but affordable housing in the development area near the stadium appears to have the greatest potential to sink the project.

  • Some city council members and mayor Libby Schaaf are insisting that 15% (450) of the project’s 3,000 units be priced below market rate. 
  • The city also wants the team to pay for the construction or preservation of another 600 affordable units in surrounding neighborhoods.
  • Team president Dave Kaval has referred to the city’s affordable housing requirements, which would require 7-12% of the units to be below market-rate depending on the details of the project, per SFGate (Kaval has cited the figure as 5%).

“Many council members feel that the [draft] term sheet this council developed is a very generous deal for the Oakland A’s,” said council member Dan Kalb. 

The project faces a key commission vote on June 30 over whether the area the A’s plan to build on will be redesignated from being exclusively for port use. 

Payback Play

Housing is not the only roadblock: The two sides also need to agree on how much the team can recover in tax revenue. 

Last year, the team proposed a plan in which it would recover $855 million in infrastructure improvements and adjustments through tax revenue from the surrounding area, some of which is already developed. 

The city countered with a proposal that removed around $352 million in paybacks from the A’s proposal.

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The Cleveland Browns invested $230 million in Deshaun Watson. How much they’ll get in return is very much an open question.

The team said it had looked into allegations of sexual misconduct against the quarterback, including 22 civil suits, prior to trading six draft picks including three first-rounders for Watson, in addition to giving him a five-year, fully guaranteed contract.

That claim is being called into question after reporting from the New York Times uncovered new details.

  • Watson met with at least 66 women for massages in a 17-month period. Twenty-four have sued him for sexual harassment or assault.
  • Two other women have filed criminal charges. Watson’s attorneys have denied the allegations and collected statements of support for Watson from 15 massage therapists.
  • The Houston Texans, Watson’s team at the time, helped arrange the massages and provided him with a non-disclosure agreement after a woman threatened to expose his conduct on social media.
  • The Texans have been added as a defendant by lawyers representing the 24 plaintiffs.

For Whom Goodell Tolls

In addition to the lawsuits and criminal charges, the NFL is conducting its own inquiry into Watson’s conduct, which could result in a suspension. NFL commissioner Roger Goodell said on May 24 that the investigation was nearing an end. It’s unclear if the recent reporting affects that timeline.

The Browns are reportedly unlikely to attempt to void the contract unless Watson is convicted of criminal charges.

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Blockchain application platform VeChain has secured a five-year, $100 million deal with mixed martial arts organization UFC.

As part of the deal, UFC — owned by sports and entertainment conglomerate Endeavor — will provide VeChain with “unprecedented integration” into the organization’s assets.

  • VeChain will hold title rights to UFC’s official fighter rankings.
  • It will see its brand represented inside the UFC octagon at all events.
  • VeChain will have visibility across UFC’s digital and social channels.
  • The deal exposes VeChain to roughly 900 million households across 175 countries.

The two new business partners will also work together to create custom and original content.

VeChain’s pricy sponsorship deal runs contrary to the company’s previous business practices. The company spent only $4 million in Q1 2022 — and less than $660,000 of that amount was allocated toward marketing.

UFC is no stranger to cryptocurrency and the blockchain. In July 2021, the organization signed a long-term kit deal with, a Singapore-based exchange with 50 million customers.

Rich Parent

Endeavor generated $1.47 billion in revenue in Q1 2022, a 37.8% increase year-over-year. The holding company posted a net income of $517.7 million during the quarter behind sellouts at all of UFC’s pay-per-view events and the 80% sale of its production house, Endeavor Content.

The sale of its majority stake in that business paid Endeavor around $464 million.

Endeavor expects full-year revenue in FY2022 to range between $5.2 billion and $5.5 billion.

  • Houston, Cincinnati, and UCF have officially announced their early departure from the AAC to the Big 12 for the 2023-24 season.
  • The opening day of the LIV Golf Invitational reportedly drew in an average audience of 93,000 on YouTube.
  • Tom Brady, who signed a two-year, $50 million deal with the Tampa Bay Buccaneers, hinted that previous rumors of a possible deal with the Miami Dolphins were true.
  • Los Angeles Chargers owner Dean Spanos is facing another civil case brought on by one of his sisters, alleging that Dean and his brother Michael hold “misogynistic attitudes.”

Do you think you’ll attend any 2026 World Cup matches?

Friday’s Answer
37% of respondents actively shop for better credit card perks and terms.

This news is republished from another source. You can check the original article here.

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