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#2401 BSLMikeLowe

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Posted 06 September 2022 - 10:55 PM

According to Andrew Marchand of the NY Post, Pat McAfee is joining ESPN College Gameday as a full time member of the crew starting this Saturday at Austin, TX. McAfee recently won a poll on The Athletic as the overwhelming choice of personalities to replace Lee Corso.



#2402 BSLMikeLowe

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Posted 07 September 2022 - 12:08 PM

It's official. In addition to being on Gameday, he'll also be hosting a college version of the Monday Night Manningcast 6 times a season. This in addition to his show on Fox and WWE Smackdown hosting gig. Guy works his butt off, that's for sure.

 

https://espnpressroo...the-home-depot/

 

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#2403 BSLChrisStoner

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Posted 11 September 2022 - 06:13 PM

Jonathan Tjarks, a beloved member of the Ringer community, has passed away. Please see here for details about how to support his family.

 

https://twitter.com/...041537010376706



#2404 BSLChrisStoner

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Posted 02 October 2022 - 09:33 AM

Mortensen....  know he dealt with throat cancer.  It's got to be very tough for him struggling to speak.  
Do you think ESPN should remove him (and Corso)? 



#2405 BSLMikeLowe

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Posted 06 October 2022 - 05:01 PM

Action Network: Sources: DraftKings and ESPN close to signing exclusive partnership

 

Specific terms of this deal are unknown, but the deal is a massive, exclusive partnership that will have shows and perhaps odds integrated into game broadcasts.



#2406 BSLMikeLowe

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Posted 06 October 2022 - 05:03 PM

Mortensen....  know he dealt with throat cancer.  It's got to be very tough for him struggling to speak.  
Do you think ESPN should remove him (and Corso)? 

 

I think that was at least part of the equation that brought McAfee onto Gameday. Would not be surprised if this is Corso's last season.



#2407 BSLChrisStoner

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Posted 15 October 2022 - 10:16 AM

Would The NBA Embrace Streaming for $100B?

Darren Yamashita-USA TODAY Sports

 

Twenty years ago, the National Basketball Association transformed the sports media landscape by moving most of its games from free over-the-air television to pay cable networks.

The question now is whether the league will spark another seismic shift by embracing the brave new world of streaming TV.

The NBA’s expected to seek upward of $75 billion for its next media rights package starting in 2025. It boasts rising superstars like Ja Morant and Jayson Tatum, a tech-savvy audience, and global appeal.

  • On the other hand, its cable-heavy distribution model is under heavy pressure from cord-cutters in the U.S. as younger consumers shift to streaming services.
  • Under current deals that run through the 2024-25 season, Disney’s ABC/ESPN and Warner Bros. Discovery’s TNT are paying a combined $24 billion, or $2.6 billion annually.

As the new season tips off in San Francisco and Boston on Tuesday night, the league’s media strategies could be coming full circle.

 

Back in January 2002, ESPN was the insurgent that sold the NBA on moving mostly to cable from broadcast — ending the 12-year run of the popular “NBA on NBC,” which brought us Michael Jordan’s dynastic Chicago Bulls, Bob Costas, and John Tesh’s “Roundball Rock” theme song.

Now the tables have turned. It’s ESPN and TNT, and their legacy media parents, that will have to play defense against Amazon and Apple, as well as possible contenders like Google.

And don’t count out sports betting giants like FanDuel and DraftKings, that want to create a “watch and bet” environment that includes in-game wagering.

The Tradeoff

Despite their bottomless pockets, the tech giants will have to prove that the NBA won’t lose most of its audience by moving a large percentage of its national games to streaming.

 

If you think the bidding was lucrative two decades ago, you ain’t seen nothing yet.

“I would say that all of the leading technology companies are interested in the NBA. Amazon is just one of them. I think Apple, I think Google. All of them,” said John Kosner, former NBA and ESPN executive turned media advisor and the founder of Kosner Media.

“And keep in mind the definition of what’s a ‘rights package’ going forward doesn’t have to be what we grew up with,” he added. “A company like Discord (a social platform with 150 million monthly users) could become an NBA rights holder at some point, too. I think they’re all interested.”

  • This season, Disney will air 82 games on ESPN and 18 on ABC, as well as the NBA Playoffs and NBA Finals.
  • ESPN boss Jimmy Pitaro has made it clear he wants to stay in business with the league. 

“It’s an incredibly important property for us. We also see that property as ascending — younger demographics. Right now, I think they have more parity than we’ve seen in a long time,” Pitaro told The Athletic. “We see young stars who are starting to catch on in the zeitgeist. We are incredibly excited about the NBA.”

NBA Game-Changer

The stakes are high for the $10 billion league as it tips off its 76th season.

 

The NBA’s pioneering embrace of cable TV two decades ago sparked a migration of sports properties from traditional networks.

  • The NFL’s first primetime showcase, “Monday Night Football,” shifted to ESPN from ABC in 2006. 
  • A year later, Major League Baseball’s first-round playoff games were shown exclusively on cable TV (TBS) for the first time.
  • College football’s former Bowl Championship Series moved to ESPN from ABC and Fox Sports in 2011.

The NBA never completely abandoned free TV — ABC has aired the NBA Finals, as well as select weekend matchups, since 2003.  

But the ability to pocket higher rights fees from cable operators was the primary reason why sports leagues like the NBA and MLB moved the bulk of their games to cable. 

ESPN offered a dual revenue stream from both advertisers and subscribers. Broadcasters like NBC (reliant only on ad revenue) couldn’t compete. 

 

NBC’s Dick Ebersol lamented at the time, ”In the future it will become almost impossible for broadcast television sports to match the power of those subscriber fees.”

History Repeats?

Cord-cutting has significantly slashed the footprint of pay cable operators. During fiscal year 2021, for example, ESPN’s distribution shrank 10% to 76 million U.S. homes — a 24% drop from a high of 100 million a decade ago.

Cash-rich Amazon and Apple are expanding into live sports with each boasting market capitalizations of over $1 trillion.

Amazon is paying the NFL $1 billion a year to serve as the exclusive carrier of “Thursday Night Football” through 2033.

  • The deal marks the first time the NFL sold an exclusive national rights package to a digital streaming service.
  • “TNF” previously aired across a “tri-cast” of Fox Sports, NFL Network, and Amazon.
  • Separately, Amazon Prime also scored a package of 21 New York Yankees games in the team’s home TV market.

Meanwhile, Apple signed a $2.5 billion, 10-year deal to exclusively show all Major League Soccer matches — and is slowly moving into baseball, too.

  • Starting in 2023, Apple’s streaming service will take over all local and national MLS games currently carried by ESPN, Fox, Twitter, and regional sports networks. 
  • In March, Apple and Major League Baseball agreed to a streaming deal that pays the league an estimated $85 million a year for a package of “Friday Night Baseball” games.
  • In its first season streaming MLB, Apple exclusively scored a key New York Yankees game at the height of Aaron Judge’s home run record chase.

Google is said to be pursuing the NFL’s Sunday Ticket package of out-of-market games, along with Apple, Amazon, and Disney. 

 

The league wants the winning bidder to cough up $2.5 billion annually — a big spike from DirecTV’s $1.5 billion. The NBA sees the value of its media rights increasing, too.

Silver Holds the Cards

With Amazon in the mix, the NFL scored its long-term $100 billion-plus media rights payday last year. It’s the NBA’s turn now.

Adam Silver’s NBA is the most tech-forward league, and the savvy commissioner has plenty of options as he looks down the road.

The league could re-up with ESPN and TNT for linear TV while selling an exclusive streaming package.

 

Or it could roll the dice and embrace a streaming model the way it went mostly cable TV 20 years ago. It’s not implausible — the NBA already has a $1.5 billion per year streaming deal with Tencent Holdings in China.

The Answer Is Always Money

The late, great sports TV producer Don Ohlmeyer used to say, “The answer to all your questions is money.”

It remains to be seen whether a bet on streaming will pay off like the NBA’s gamble on cable.

But given the Association’s history of bold moves, don’t be surprised if the league makes a fast break toward what it sees as the media future of sports, especially if embracing non-traditional platforms gives it a shot at NFL-level media rights revenue — the coveted $100 billion figure.

 

That could mean doing business with Amazon, Apple, or Google. Either way, these negotiations won’t be a lay-up for ESPN and TNT.

Look for a bidding war that will go right down to the buzzer.


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#2408 BSLMikeLowe

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Posted 20 October 2022 - 09:34 PM

Just realized tonight is a Sports Equinox night, only the 27th ever. You have MLB, NBA, NHL and NFL games all being played. Throw in that you have college football and a couple MLS playoff games on tonight as well and it's probably more like the solar system aligning.


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#2409 Nigel Tufnel

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Posted 24 October 2022 - 06:38 PM

2023 will be Jim Nantz's last NCAA basketball tournament.

#2410 BSLMikeLowe

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Posted 27 November 2022 - 06:02 PM

It's been a great Thanksgiving holiday for FOX Sports. Each of the previous three days saw:

 

Most-watched NFL regular season game ever (NY Giants vs Dallas)

 

Most-watched men's soccer telecast ever (US vs England)

 

Most-watched college football game on FOX ever (Michigan vs Ohio St)


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#2411 BSLMikeRandall

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Posted 27 November 2022 - 06:31 PM

It's been a great Thanksgiving holiday for FOX Sports. Each of the previous three days saw:

Most-watched NFL regular season game ever (NY Giants vs Dallas)

Most-watched men's soccer telecast ever (US vs England)

Most-watched college football game on FOX ever (Michigan vs Ohio St)


That’s pretty surprising to me considering the options people have these days. I know Soccer is growing so that one not a surprise. But Michigan/Ohio St. has been a 1v2 IIRC at some point. Also all those years where people had three channels.

Same for Dallas. I guess the New York market did their part as well. But hard to believe they didn’t have more important games in the past.
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#2412 BSLMikeLowe

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Posted 27 November 2022 - 06:34 PM

That’s pretty surprising to me considering the options people have these days. I know Soccer is growing so that one not a surprise. But Michigan/Ohio St. has been a 1v2 IIRC at some point. Also all those years where people had three channels.

Same for Dallas. I guess the New York market did their part as well. But hard to believe they didn’t have more important games in the past.

 

The caveat with Mich-OSU is that it's FOX's most-watched ever. Doesn't count ABC, CBS, etc. I did read somewhere that it was the most-watched college regular season game on any network since 2011.

 

As for the NYG-Dallas game, it was on Thanksgiving. That's probably the biggest day other than the Super Bowl for watching NFL games. And that both teams are in big markets (Dallas draws no matter who they play) plus both are having good seasons, helped. Not much else would have been on at that time slot....you're either watching the game or eating turkey....and most people were probably doing both.


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#2413 BSLMikeLowe

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Posted 01 December 2022 - 11:25 PM

Chris “The Bear” Fallica is leaving ESPN and going to FOX. I’ll miss his podcast with Stanford Steve.

 

https://awfulannounc...on-kickoff.html



#2414 BSLMikeLowe

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Posted 12 December 2022 - 03:03 PM

Bill Simmons is going to be a guest on tonight's Manningcast. As best I can recall, it'll be his first time on ESPN since he was fired in 2015 after he called out Roger Goodell for lying about the Ray Rice video.

 

https://twitter.com/...385325418074113



#2415 Old Man

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Posted 12 December 2022 - 03:05 PM

Im sure he is probably a good guy.

 

But, I really dislike listening to Dickie V do college bball games. 



#2416 DuffMan

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Posted 13 December 2022 - 01:00 PM

Shanon Sharpe showed a lot of restraint in not decking Skip Bayless on Undisputed

#2417 BSLMikeLowe

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Posted 25 January 2023 - 06:54 PM

Shanon Sharpe showed a lot of restraint in not decking Skip Bayless on Undisputed

 

He also showed a lot of "restraint" when he chose not to take on Steven Adams (the NBA's answer to The Undertaker) during his little brouhaha with the Grizzlies last week.



#2418 BSLMikeLowe

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Posted 25 January 2023 - 06:57 PM

Sinclair Broadcasting subsidiary, Diamond Sports Group, which owns all of the Bally's RSNs is headed for Chapter 11 bankruptcy (that's the one where you try to restructure your debts, not go out of business). Still, they've got a rocky road ahead. And it doesn't sound like the sports leagues whose team's rights they own, particularly MLB, want to throw them much of a lifeline.

 

https://www.sportsbu...ana=top_stories



#2419 DuffMan

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Posted 25 January 2023 - 08:38 PM

He also showed a lot of "restraint" when he chose not to take on Steven Adams (the NBA's answer to The Undertaker) during his little brouhaha with the Grizzlies last week.


Where was that restraint when he decided to wear that sweater?
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#2420 mweb08

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Posted 25 January 2023 - 10:30 PM

He also showed a lot of "restraint" when he chose not to take on Steven Adams (the NBA's answer to The Undertaker) during his little brouhaha with the Grizzlies last week.


Lol, I noticed that Sharpe said like 3 or 4 people didn't want any of him, but somehow he left out Adams.




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