Miami-Dade County

‘Seriously?????’ Porn site causes stir with bid for Heat to play in ‘BangBros Center’

An aerial view of the AmericanAirlines Arena, of the Miami Heat. American is set to leave as the named sponsor by the end of 2019.
An aerial view of the AmericanAirlines Arena, of the Miami Heat. American is set to leave as the named sponsor by the end of 2019. AP

With American Airlines soon to be out as title sponsor of the arena that’s home to the Miami Heat, a local porn company wants the Internet to know it’s ready to step in and take the top slot.

BangBros, best known for filming sex scenes in vans, announced Thursday it had submitted a $10 million bid to replace American as title sponsor of the county-owned arena. Miami-Dade has said it’s in talks with national companies to replace American at a higher price than the previous $2 million-a-year deal.

There was no official comment, but it’s safe to say those talks do not involve a porn company. Any sponsorship deal is subject to a vote by Miami-Dade commissioners and a potential veto by Mayor Carlos Gimenez, who is overseeing negotiations. When the Miami Herald asked Gimenez’s office about the BangBros proposal, a representative replied: “Seriously?????”

BangBros started the unfolding publicity grab when it posted on Twitter Thursday afternoon it had submitted a $10 million “bid” to the consulting firm, Superlative Group, that Miami-Dade hired to negotiate a new sponsorship deal. It included an image of American’s signature jet silhouette on the roof of the arena replaced with a van with doors open on each side.

“Miami is known for many things,” BangBros said in its press release, posted on Twitter. “South Beach, beautiful women, sports teams ... Miami is also known for BangBros.”

The county decided in 2018 to end the current arrangement of having the Heat handle naming rights for the arena, and Miami-Dade has until the end of 2019 to sign a new deal. If it can’t, it will be forced to pay the Heat $2 million a year in naming revenue anyway as part of the team’s management contract for the arena. BangBros said it submitted its proposal Thursday, after news broke about American’s pending exit as the arena’s title sponsor.

Myriam Marquez, Gimenez’s communications director, said the county’s existing sponsorship agreements already restrict advertising for liquor and tobacco products, so pornography would be a non-starter. “Miami-Dade County has rules guiding contracts and sponsorships to ensure they are family-friendly businesses,” she said.

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