Sports – Daily Detroit What To Know And Where To Go In Metro Detroit Sat, 20 Jan 2018 00:39:59 +0000 en-US hourly 1 Detroit Named As One Of Just 4 Finalists For Two Major League Soccer Teams Wed, 29 Nov 2017 20:02:23 +0000 Detroit, along with Cincinnatti, Nashville and Sacramento are finalists for two slots to be awarded in the next round of expansion for Major League Soccer.

“The leaders of the Cincinnati, Detroit, Nashville and Sacramento MLS expansion ownership groups have bold visions and innovative plans for their clubs, stadiums and their involvement in their respective communities,” said Don Garber, Commissioner of Major League Soccer. “We are pleased these highly-respected business and sports leaders have been so determined to bring Major League Soccer to their cities. We have been greatly encouraged by the progress that all four of these groups have made and we are looking forward to their presentations.”

Some pundits didn’t think Detroit had a chance, as we’ve been following for quite awhile here on Daily Detroit. They have been proven wrong, with Detroit’s joint bid from billionaires Dan Gilbert and Tom Gores utilizing Ford Field becoming a finalist.

Some thought Detroit would be disqualified because they are using a multipurpose facility in Ford Field, but with this and previous developments, never discount Gilbert and Gores from making something happen.

Formal pitches will be made to the MLS expansion committee on December 6. The next step after that is a board of governors meeting on December 14.

The four ownership teams vying for one of the two spots are:

Cincinnati: Carl H. Lindner III – Co-CEO of American Financial Group and Owner, Chairman and CEO of FC Cincinnati; Scott Farmer – CEO of Cintas Corporation.

Detroit: Dan Gilbert – Owner of the Cleveland Cavaliers and Founder and Chairman of Quicken Loans, Inc.; Tom Gores – Owner of the Detroit Pistons and Founder, Chairman and CEO of Platinum Equity.

Nashville: John Ingram – Chairman of Ingram Industries Inc. and CEO Nashville Soccer Holdings; Wilf Family – owners of the Minnesota Vikings; Turner Family – Managing Partners of MarketStreet Enterprises.

Sacramento: Kevin Nagle – Managing Partner of Sac Soccer & Entertainment Holdings and Minority Owner of the Sacramento Kings. Jed York – CEO of the San Francisco Forty-Niners. Mark Friedman – President of Fulcrum Property Group and Minority Owner of the Sacramento Kings, and other limited partners.

We will know by the end of the year if Detroit will be home to a Major League Soccer team as part of this round of expansion.

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SI Report: Detroit Not Getting Major League Soccer Team Tue, 14 Nov 2017 19:40:02 +0000 Detroit’s bid for a Major League Soccer team continues to have signs that, despite all of the positive press Team Gilbert/Gores want to foist on the local media around this, it is not going anywhere.

The latest is in a report by Grant Wahl in Sports Illustrated that cites industry insiders that Cincinnati, Nashville, Sacramento and a fourth entrant, Miami, with another bid being put together by star David Beckham that’s a separate item.

I’m being told the two expansion teams will likely come from a group of three cities that includes Sacramento, Nashville and Cincinnati. Keep in mind, David Beckham’s Miami expansion team is viewed separately by the league, and while the due diligence by new Miami investor Todd Boehly is taking longer than expected, I’m told that a formal announcement is set to happen in the coming months.

Wahl is knowledgable as a senior writer at SI and host of the Planet Futbol podcast.

MAKING SENSE OF IT ALL: In context, this makes the “move” of the MLS bid to Ford Field make a lot more sense. If Gilbert and Gores already know they’re not getting it, then you can’t very well tell Wayne County officials you’re putting a Major League Soccer stadium on the spot of the former jail, right? If that’s the case, you say your bid has “changed” to include Ford Field and try again next time.

AND THEN: That land that was going to hold a soccer stadium is now part of possible land swap to do residential and commercial development at I-375 and Gratiot with the jail possibly moving to Warren and I-75.

Local opposition has been quickly mounting in the Cultural Center part of Midtown to the jail plan (roughly from I-94 to I-75 to Warren to Woodward).

Under the plan, the new Wayne County jail would be moved from the downtown to right across the freeway from one of Detroit’s most successful neighborhoods on the site of a current bus maintenance center and built by Gilbert’s folks.

The vote on the land swap has been delayed by Detroit City Council citing a lack of community engagement.

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Renderings For New MLS Team Used DCFC Designs, Design Firm Apologizes Fri, 03 Nov 2017 00:39:49 +0000 It’s a flap that design firm Rosetti has already apologized for, but it’s another slight in the ongoing saga between the crowdfunded Detroit City Football Club and the bid for the Major League Soccer team.

In renderings for the new deal between Ford Field and the proposed MLS team ownership, the Detroit News reported that the stands are selling DCFC merchandise. Here’s a tweet showing the image.

And here’s the apology from design firm ROSSETTI.

There seems to be little love lost between the two groups. Earlier, the billionaire ownership team tried to register Detroit City Soccer Club as a trademark and were denied. A request is pending for “Motor City Soccer Club” as well as names close to that.

One has to ask: Why was the DCFC merchandise even there in the first place?

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No New Soccer Stadium Will Be Built, MLS Team Would Play At Ford Field Instead Thu, 02 Nov 2017 20:50:20 +0000 When it comes to Detroit’s bid for a Major League Soccer team, the ownership team of Tom Gores and Dan Gilbert have decided to change pitches.

Instead of building one at the “fail jail” site at Gratiot and I-75, the new plan according to an announcement today is to move the team into Ford Field, a venue that has hosted soccer for one-off events in the past.

According to press materials, benefits of Ford Field include:

  • Ford Field’s seating produces a fan sightline slope of 17 degrees in the lower level
  • Ford Field’s location inside the central business district and downtown setting bolsters the game-day experience with walkable entertainment and gathering spaces
  • Different seating configurations can support crowd sizes ranging from 26,000 to 64,000
  • Soccer-specific design will maximize usage of premium suite inventory and high-visibility sponsorship activation
  • Ford Field has hosted four USA Soccer international matches (2008, 2011, 2012, 2015)

With this move, the Ford family who owns the Detroit Lions could also take an ownership stake in the new venture down the line.

Detroit doesn’t have an MLS team yet, and is still in the bid process. The stipulations beyond the $150 million fee also prefer a soccer-specific stadium.

So what will happen to the proposed jail site? There has been a lot of controversy, especially in the Arts Center neighborhood (a part of Midtown), about a jail opening across the freeway from an area of the city that’s among the most stable residentially.

To recap, the idea as it stands now would be that the new Wayne County Jail would go at Warren and I-75 where the current bus terminal is. Wayne County has already agreed to swap land with the city for the deal. And then Gilbert’s team would develop both the jail and the new mixed-use development by Greektown.

According to Matt Cullen, Principal at Rock Ventures, plans will move forward to do a swap deal at I-75 and Gratiot.

“From the time we started working on the Gratiot site, we have always been focused on the importance of a great mixed-use development at the gateway to downtown Detroit, soccer was just a potential component of our vision,” said Cullen. “But once we better understood Ford Field’s unique attributes, including the recent renovations and a bowl design that is perfectly suited for soccer, we decided to change course. We have made clear to the County that we are still fully committed to moving forward with our proposal to build out a new criminal justice complex on Warren and I-75.  We are also fully committed to a mixed-use development on the Gratiot site that will be an economic driver for our community.”

For his part, Detroit Mayor Mike Duggan is supportive of the plan.

“This partnership allows us to bring major league soccer to a first-class facility inside our growing sports and entertainment district and eliminates the potential request for Detroit tax dollars to construct another new stadium,” said Duggan in a statement. “I wholeheartedly support this proposal and thank Tom Gores, Dan Gilbert, and the Ford family for working together to make this happen.”

Quick Take: Let’s be honest. When it comes to billionaires and hundreds of millions of dollars changing hands, it’s amazing how specifications can magically change on a bid or project. If Gilbert and Gores are confident that this doesn’t hurt their bid, they probably have their reasons. Also, a soccer-specific stadium probably would have had a public financing component (they all do nowadays at one point or another).

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No Trademark For You: Gilbert & Gores Denied “Detroit City Soccer Club” By Feds Wed, 11 Oct 2017 22:17:33 +0000 Earlier this year, the pair of Detroit-invested billionaires — Dan Gilbert and Tom Gores  —attempted to trademark the term “Detroit City Soccer Club.”

Thing is, as many sports fans already know, there’s already a “Detroit City Football Club.” And it’s popular, drawing thousands of people to their games in Hamtramck.

Well, the United States Trademark and Patent Office (USPTO) denied the application for the “Detroit City Soccer Club” on Wednesday morning. Gilbert and Gores will have to come up with another name.

In the letter, the USPTO states:

Here, applicant’s goods include clothing and footwear and applicant’s services include entertainment consisting of soccer exhibitions.  The registrant’s goods and services also include clothing, footwear, and soccer games.

Therefore, since the marks are similar and the goods and services are similar in part and closely related in part, there is a likelihood of confusion between the marks and registration is hereby refused as to classes 25 and 41 in accordance with the Trademark Act.

However, there’s still an application pending for “Motor City Soccer Club.” Reading into the tea leaves of the decision — they clearly state that the defining words are “Detroit City” — it’s going to be interesting what the USPTO rules.

As always on Daily Detroit, we want to know what you think.

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Report: Fanbase Of The Detroit Lions The Second Most Liberal In NFL Fri, 29 Sep 2017 21:10:07 +0000 There is a ton of political talk around football right now. But where do people actually stand (or kneel?).

According to a new piece out by, Detroit Lions fans leans significantly toward voting for the Democratic party.

So much so that Detroit is only beaten by San Francisco and beats the fanbase of the New York Giants.

It also dives into the political affiliation of all of the National Football League Teams, and finds that most of them lean Democratic with how they vote.

The most Republican? The fans of the Houston Texans Tampa Bay Buccaneers.

It’s interesting to note that most NFL fanbases leaned toward voting Democratic.

So how did they come to this conclusion? FiveThirtyEight commissioned a SurveyMonkey poll of 2,290 American NFL fans, asking them to identify their favorite three teams and the political party they identify with.

The average margin of error they say was +/- 7 percentage points. They dive into a few other metrics on the post here.

So, Lions fans, what do you think? Are they right?

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$85 Vials Of Melted Joe Louis Ice Is Now A Thing Wed, 20 Sep 2017 21:01:00 +0000 If you wanted your own piece of Joe Louis Arena before it comes down, you can grab yourself a vial of melted ice for the low low price of $85.

A different take on the common souvenir of a piece of turf or a brick, the ice vial is being sold by the Detroit Red Wings Foundation. The proceeds go to support their mission to “grow the sport of hockey.”

Only 3,000 will be available for purchase. says you’ll also get a numbered 6″ x 8″ shadowbox framed photo of the old Joe to commemorate where the Wings played hockey for 38 years before the Dough Joe.

More here.

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Wayne State’s New Football Uniform Celebrates 100th Anniversary, Medal Of Honor Recipients Fri, 15 Sep 2017 19:06:45 +0000 Through various college names, Wayne State University has had an athletics program for a hundred years.

To celebrate that, and to give light to the Medal of Honor, the highest award for valor in action against an enemy, force, The Wayne State University Department of Athletics unveiled a new football uniform today.

This new uniform will be worn for the first time at this Saturday’s 6 p.m. game against Saginaw Valley State.

Only 3,499 recipients in the Army, Navy, Air Force, Marine Corps and Coast Guard have been awarded the Medal of Honor.

“Any time you celebrate a milestone like 100 years, you have a lot of proud moments and accomplishments to reflect upon,” said WSU Director of Athletics Rob Fournier in a statement.  “However, the more I thought about a century of athletics at WSU, I couldn’t help but think of those who have sacrificed so much so that we could have those 100 years.  And I kept coming back to the military.”

Anthony Pittman, linebacker for the Wayne State University football team, displays the jerseys the team will wear to honor Medal of Honor recipients. (Courtesy Photo)

There are currently 72 living recipients of the Medal of Honor.

Through the year, each of the 18 athletic teams at the university will have an apparel item with patches representing both the WSU 100th anniversary logo as well as the Medal of Honor logo, in addition to the name of a Medal of Honor recipient.

More than 400 Medal of Honor recipient names were selected to represent each branch of the military, including the only female recipient (Mary Walker of the U.S. Army).

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Would You Rent Your Favorite Team Jerseys? This Service Thinks So Fri, 15 Sep 2017 14:08:40 +0000 Sports teams are near and dear to the heart of Detroiters. On any game day, it’s a sea of jerseys around the stadiums, and it’s not uncommon to see people wearing their jerseys out to the bar or, as I’ve seen in some cases, to work.

But things change. Favorite players get traded, there are new styles that come out — and, let’s be honest — buying jerseys can be really expensive, often north of $100.

Enter Rep The Squad. It’s a company that has a local tie — one of their investors is Detroit Lion Golden Tate — for a monthly subscription price, you can switch up your jersey as much as you like. Members pay a flat monthly fee of $19.95 for adult and $16.95 for youth sizes.

Here’s how it works. Users create a profile on their website as well as a personalized “digital locker” of players and styles. Rep The Squad then says they’ll deliver the first jersey within three days. When ready to make a change, the idea is you’d simply send it back and the next available jersey will ship immediately.

Rep The Squad CEO Brian Watkins & Brand Ambassador Richard Sherman. Photo: Julie Harmsen

Rep The Squad’s site offers free shipping and returns with every exchange and professional cleaning after each return. Looking at the website, they’re pretty clear that they understand there’s going to be a lot of wear and tear on the jerseys, especially from food.

When it comes to the Detroit Lions, they have a selection of nearly 30 jerseys that range from the old-school like Barry Sanders to the current, like Matthew Stafford. screenshot.

Detroit is one of three initial launch markets. The other two are San Francisco, California and Seattle, Washington. Rep The Squad is based in Seattle.

For their limited launch, they’re focusing on the jerseys of NFL teams, but one could see if they can prove the model how easy it would be to expand into other sports.

So, Detroit sports fans, what do you think? Is this idea a touchdown… or a fumble?

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5 Detroit Legends Honored With “Spirit Murals” At New Arena Fri, 01 Sep 2017 20:15:10 +0000 Five Detroit legends – most who are living – are going to be honored with a series of “Spirit Murals” at the new Little Caesars Arena.

The murals were painted by Detroit-based artist Don Kilpatrick III. He’s been in a variety of publications an is the chair of the Illustration Department at the College for Creative Studies in Detroit.

According to the Detroit Red Wings, the legends may be rotated or added to depending on what’s going on.

Individuals that have defined sports and entertainment in our community will be changed as important anniversaries come up, allowing us to celebrate great moments and mark the historic milestones that made Detroit swell with pride.

The first five legends are:

  • Isiah Thomas – Detroit Pistons’ career leader in points, assists, steals, turnovers, minutes played; led the Pistons to their first Eastern Conference Finals 30 years ago, the deepest they had gone in the playoffs since they moved to Detroit from Ft. Wayne.
  • Eminem – Greatest selling male Detroit artist of all time and top selling male artist of the 2000s; the landmark Slim Shady EP recorded 20 years ago.
  • Aretha Franklin – The Queen of Soul, one of the most influential and important voices in music history, who was also the first female artist inducted rock-n-roll hall of fame; 50 years ago R-E-S-P-E-C-T became a hit and signature song.
  • Gordie Howe – Hockey icon (Mr. Hockey), Detroit Red Wings career leader in games, goals, points; Gordie started wearing his legendary #9 in his second season, 70 years ago.
  • Joe Louis – One of the greatest boxers of all time, a nationwide World War II hero who broke the color barrier in professional golf and won the heavyweight championship 80 years ago.
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