NBA Ditches McDonalds, Quiero Taco Bell Instead

For the past 20 years, there have been few sport & sponsor partnerships as strong as that of McDonald’s and the NBA. Both are historically American brands that grew dramatically worldwide over the past couple decades. The partnership resulted in some enduring advertising images of NBA stars chowing down on Mickey D’s foods. The two just seemed to go together.

LeBron Taco Bell

(Always a trendsetter)

But now, amidst this historically bad economic climate, the partnership has come to a close. The NBA and Taco Bell have announced a four-year agreement for the purveyor of wretched Mexican-themed “food” to serve as the official fast food sponsor of the NBA. It’s like David Stern is stomping all over my childhood TV commercial memories while wearing a sombrero.

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Florida State WR Passes Out In McD’s Drive-Thru

After a late night of partying, there’s pretty much nothing better than McDonald’s (which might explain Michael Phelps’ endorsement deal with the fast food joint). It’s greasy, it’s bad for you and it’s delicious. But after a night of alleged drinking and pot smoking, perhaps Florida State receiver Preston Parker should have settled for ordering a pizza, or seeing if there were any Ho-Hos in the cupboards.

Preston Parker DUI Falls Asleep in Drive-Thru

(Parker dozed off after his “no mustard” request @ McDonalds took 45 minutes)

WARCHANT.COM reports that Parker was arrested on Saturday night and charged with DUI after passing out at a McDonald’s drive-thru. Cops found him slumped over in his car with the engine running, his foot on the brake and the car in drive, where he had been for the past 20 minutes. It turned out that he was under the legal limit for alcohol, but tested positive for pot.

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Travis Henry Makes Bail; Dodgers & Clemson Wail

• Suspected cocaine trafficker & ex-NFL RB Travis Henry is out of jail on $400,000 bail. Let it snow, let it snow, let it snow!

Travis Henry Broncos

• The Los Angeles Dodgers and Clemson Tigers sure could use a hug.

• It was sink or swim for a Zimbabwe soccer squad. Unfortunately, one of their players drowned.

Morten Andersen wants a chance to kick the record of NFL’s oldest player.

• U-Dub and Wazzu are on pace to finish out their seasons with a finale we’re officially dubbing the Rotten Apple Cup.

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Michael Vick Makes Cameo On McDonald’s Promo

It’s a pretty simple rule in the world of advertising: When your spokesman is convicted of a brutal crime - say, managing a dog fighting ring - you go ahead and pull your ads with him in them. The goal of such a move is to, you know, not associate your product with nefarious criminal activities. Well, it looks like the folks over at McDonald’s must have missed that class.

McDonald's Promotion

(Someone didn’t get the memo)

TMZ is reporting that one of their “news gatherers” happened upon the above Michael Vick-featured promotion yesterday while ordering a Happy Meal. And while the promotion is from 2004 - it’s not like they started a whole new campaign after Vick was convicted - it is a bit off-putting. It’s kind of like walking into a Hertz and still seeing an old cutout of O.J. Simpson giving the thumbs up; you’d probably want to take your business elsewhere.

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Ronald McDonald Flexes His Sponsorship Muscle

As you know, Chicago is on the short-list of cities vying for the 2016 Olympics, where Usain Bolt will become the first man to break the sound barrier powered on his legs alone. Coincidentally enough, the City of Wind is also the near-home of a certain Golden Arched corporation, who are one of the top sponsors of the Olympics. And while they’re not officially coming out and saying it, apparently McDonald’s is heavily hinting that they’d “prefer” if the International Olympic Committee chose Chi-town for the Olympics. And hey, if they don’t, maybe they’ll just take their business elsewhere.

Ronald McDonald

(Don’t be fooled. Behind his smiling exterior lies a ferocious beast.)

The CHICAGO TRIBUNE is reporting that John Lewicki, the company’s senior director of alliance marketing, is a bit of a bad ass. Specifically for this quote: “The international market is very important to us, but some of the cities they are picking are not. I’m not going to sit here and tell you that if it’s not Chicago, we won’t renew, but if it is Chicago, we probably will.”

That’s stone cold gangsta.

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NHL Panthers On The Prowl For New Cheerleaders

• The Florida Panthers are on the prowl for some new Ice Dancers.

Florida Panthers Ice Dancers cheerleaders

• A minor league hockey player scores a hat trick of rude behavior on a flight, and gets a 527,040-minute penalty.

• If the Rays win the World Series, free pizza for the whole wide world!

• A trio of Cubs fans brutally beat a fan of a rival team. This is not a repeat.

• This is the only way people will pay attention to a Pirates game: West Virginia basketball players in the stands fighting with police.

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Burger War Causes Soccer Tourney To Skip Town

The town of Boraas in Sweden was all ready to welcome next year’s UEFA Under-21 Youth Championships. However, the Swedish city soon found itself scratched from hosting the soccer tourney. Why? Because the local soccer stadium sells the wrong kind of burgers.

Max Swedish burger

BLOOMBERG reports that the Boraas Arena refused to shut down their stadium concession stand of Max, a Swedish competitor of McDonald’s, which happens to be one of the tournament’s main sponsors. Needless to say, the burger behemoth threw it’s corporate weight around and had matches pulled from the Swedish site.

Mayor McCheese was even rumored to have shifted massive bags of cash and Filets O’ Lutefisk from his campaign slush fund to UEFA in order to make this happen. Read more…