04/12/16: The Stanley Cup’s opening lineup; Warriors’ win pushes NBA TV; ESPN’s Gymnastics feat


Good morning. It’s Tuesday April 12, 2016, and this is your first early morning Sports briefing. 

The NHL has its lineup of broadcast times and locations for the first round of the Stanley Cup Playoffs across NBC, NBCSN, USA, MSNBC and NHL Network.

Eastern Conference
Washington Capitals/Philadelphia Flyers
Game 1: April 14 at Washington, 7p NBCSN
Game 2: April 16 at Washington, 7p CNBC
Game 3: April 18 at Philadelphia, 7p NBCSN
Game 4: April 20 at Philadelphia, 7p NBCSN
*Game 5: April 22 at Washington, TBD
*Game 6: April 24 at Philadelphia, TBD
*Game 7: April 27 at Washington, TBD
Pittsburgh Penguins/New York Rangers
Game 1: April 13 at Pittsburgh, 8p USA
Game 2: April 16 at Pittsburgh, 3p NBC
Game 3: April 19 at New York, 7p USA
Game 4: April 21 at New York, TBD
*Game 5: April 23 at Pittsburgh, TBD
*Game 6: April 25 at New York, TBD
*Game 7: April 27 at Pittsburgh, TBD
Florida Panthers/New York Islanders
Game 1: April 14 at Florida, 8p CNBC
Game 2: April 15 at Florida, 7:30p NHL Network
Game 3: April 17 at New York, 8p NBCSN
Game 4: April 20 at New York, 8p USA
*Game 5: April 22 at Florida, TBD
*Game 6: April 24 at New York, TBD
*Game 7: April 26 at Florida, TBD
Tampa Bay Lightning/Detroit Red Wings
Game 1: April 13 at Tampa Bay, 7p NBCSN
Game 2: April 15 at Tampa Bay, 7p CNBC
Game 3: April 17 at Detroit, 7p CNBC
Game 4: April 19 at Detroit, 7 p.m. NBCSN
*Game 5: April 21 at Tampa Bay, TBD
*Game 6: April 24 at Detroit, TBD
*Game 7: April 26 at Tampa Bay, TBD

Western Conference
Dallas Stars/Minnesota Wild
Game 1: April 14 at Dallas, 9:30p NBCSN
Game 2: April 16 at Dallas, 8p NBCSN
Game 3: April 18 at Minnesota, 8:30p CNBC
Game 4: April 20 at Minnesota, 9:30p NBCSN
*Game 5: April 22 at Dallas, TBD
*Game 6: April 24 at Minnesota, TBD
*Game 7: April 26 at Dallas, TBD
St. Louis Blues/Chicago Blackhawks
Game 1: April 13 at St. Louis, 9:30p NBCSN
Game 2: April 15 at St. Louis, 8p NBCSN
Game 3: April 17 at Chicago, 3p NBC
Game 4: April 19 at Chicago, 9:30p NBCSN
*Game 5: April 21 at St. Louis, TBD
*Game 6: April 23 at Chicago, TBD
*Game 7: April 25 at St. Louis, TBD
Anaheim Ducks/Nashville Predators
Game 1: April 15 at Anaheim, 10:30p NBCSN
Game 2: April 17 at Anaheim, 10:30p NBCSN
Game 3: April 19 at Nashville, 9:30p USA
Game 4: April 21 at Nashville, 8p CNBC
*Game 5: April 23 at Anaheim, TBD
*Game 6: April 25 at Nashville, TBD
*Game 7: April 27 at Anaheim, TBD
Los Angeles Kings/San Jose Sharks
Game 1: April 14 at Los Angeles, 10:30p CNBC
Game 2: April 16 at Los Angeles, 10:30p NBCSN
Game 3: April 18 at San Jose, 10:30p NBCSN
Game 4: April 20 at San Jose, 10:30p USA
*Game 5: April 22 at Los Angeles, TBD
*Game 6: April 24 at San Jose, TBD
*Game 7: April 26 at Los Angeles, TBD


The Warriors/Spurs battle handed NBA TV with an average of 2.6 million total viewers to become the network’s most-viewed telecast of all time and ranked as cable television’s highest-rated sports program of the night, based on metered market delivery. Viewership for Sunday’s telecast was up 78% when compared to the previous all-time mark, set earlier this season for Spurs/Warriors on January 25. Meanwhile, the NBA App garnered 939,000 daily unique visitors on Sunday, the most ever for a single day during the NBA regular season.
Univision Deportes revealed the full match schedule for this summer’s Copa America Centenario from June 3rd to June 26th. Overall, 32 matches will run across UDN, UniMas and Univision Network with the first match of the tournament running simultaneously broadcast on all three networks at 9p, the first ever three-network simulcast in the history of Spanish language television. The final game will be broadcast live in 4k on Univision and UDN with coverage beginning live at 3p and the game set for 7:30p.

The NCAA is clamping down on new bowl games, setting up a three-year moratorium on sanctioning new postseason games, according to the AP.  The committee, led by Big 12 Commissioner Bob Bowlsby, will deliver the full list of recommendations on reforming the postseason in June, including the determination of which schools should qualify as a deserving team and how a team with a losting record could be placed in a bowl.

Marquette, Ohio State, Vanderbilt and Navy are set to headline the 2016 Veterans Classic on CBS Sports Network with tipoff on Nov. 11, the opening day of the 2016 college basketball season. Vanderbilt/Marquette tips off at 6:30p, followed by Ohio State/Navy at 9p. :

ESPN Films’ 30 for 30 Shorts returns with a spring lineup of five new short films debuting every Tuesday (save April 26) over the next six weeks. The films will premiere digitally on espn.com/30for30/shorts at 10a and then will air later that week on Friday Night Movie Night during the 6p hour of SportsCenter. First out of the gate today will be Tiger Hood, about a golfer in New York City who plays lower Manhattan as his course with borrowed clubs and milk cartons stuffed with newspapers instead of golf balls. “

The Cynopsis Sports Awards are next week and the room as almost full! Click here now to claim your spot.

CBS Sports Network takes on the 2016 NFL Draft with over 12 hours of programming that includes the debut of The Making of a Pro QB, a three-part series providing a behind-the-scenes look as quarterback guru George Whitfield. In addition, the channel delivers Inside College Football Draft Special: The Quarterback Show on April 25 at 7p as well as That Other Pregame Show: Draft Special on April 27 at 8p. 

Alibaba locked in a ten-year deal with World Rugby to launch rugby union in China. The muli-million agreement will see Alisports “exclusively broadcast World Rugby content and programming across its multi-million reach Internet-based, consumer-centric sports platform that aims to create value for sports industry participants and enhance consumers and sports fans engagement with sports teams and brands.”

RIP to Philadelphia Flyers Chairman and Governor Ed Snider who passed away yesterday. “Ed created the Flyers’ professional, no-nonsense culture, fostered their relentless will to win and set the highest standards for every activity on and off the ice, including such initiatives as the Ed Snider Youth Hockey Foundation and the Flyers Wives Carnival,” said NHL Commissioner Gary Bettman. “While the loss of Ed Snider tears a hole in the heart of the Flyers and the city of Philadelphia, and leaves a massive void in the city’s sports landscape, it also challenges all who knew him to carry forward the great works that are his legacy.”

In tribute to Ed Snider, HBO Sports is rebroadcasting Broad Street Bullies on Saturday at 8p on HBO Signature. The documentary, which first aired in May 2010 on HBO, tells the backstories of the Flyers’ championship athletes and their “bold, aggressive style that sparked controversy and criticism.”



Are you part of a team that works on a groundbreaking kids series, an addictive game or app, an infectious children’s entertainment campaign? Enter your mobile app, series, marketing campaign or leading executive in this year’s competition.

Deadline to enter: Wednesday, May 18, 2016 – Enter Now!

View past winners and honorable mentions: 2012 | 2013 | 2014 | 2015.


ESPN is hitting the Barbershop for its next crop of spots for SC@Night. Ice Cube, Anthony Anderson and Cedric the Entertainer, stars of the upcoming film Barbershop: The Next Cut, are seen  late at night at a barbershop, “bantering about the greatest NBA team of all time, as prompted by SportsCenter’s Scott Van Pelt following last night’s historic victory for the Warriors.”  The SC@Night is an integrated campaign which reminds fans to “End your day on a highlight” by showcasing fans, athletes, and celebrities enjoying the late night block of ESPN’s flagship program, SportsCenter.

The Nissan Kicks will be the official car of Rio 2016 Olympic and Paralympic Games. The vehicle will make Its first appearance will be on May 3rd with the start of the Rio Olympics torch relay across Brazil, serving as the lead vehicle of the torch relay convoy. “In 2016, Nissan is proud to share in the Olympic spirit of top performance and boldness. Beyond sponsoring the Rio 2016 Olympic and Paralympic Games, we will share with the world the launch of a global vehicle to be proudly made in Rio de Janeiro State. The Kicks will take part in celebrations with millions of Brazilians as it tours the country with torchbearers,” said François Dossa, Nissan Brazil president.

The Arena Football League locked in a multi-year partnership arrangement with GEICO that runs through the 2018 season. The deal will see newly branded GEICO Blue Zones while the GEICO logo will be featured across the GEICO Goal Line, dasher boards and throughout all eight AFL venues. The agreement also calls for markers at the 15-yardline to be labeled “15%” to coincide with the insurer’s promotion urging customers to take 15 minutes to save 15% on their auto coverage.


ESPN added individual apparatus streams and a new scoring interface to its first live production of the NCAA Women’s Gymnastics Championships on April 15 and 16. Both days of competition are set to air on ESPNU and stream on the ESPN app. “We’ve learned a great deal televising regular-season gymnastics live, and have seen some incredible opportunities for growth of the sport on television,” said Meg Aronowitz, ESPN coordinating producer. “The biggest hurdle in producing the sport live is scoring and we believe the graphics interface we’ve developed makes that challenge obsolete.” Meanwhile, the company will offer live streams of each individual apparatus and a quad-box view called “All-Around,” which allows a viewer to stream every apparatus live, at the same time, on one screen. All five streaming options, as well as the simulcast of the television coverage, are available through the ESPN app and WatchESPN on ESPN3.

MVPD locked in a deal with beIN SPORTS that will allow its 50,000+ subscribers to have authenticated access to beIN Sports Connect, leveraging its fuboTV login and password, at no additional cost to them.


What’s a Masters victory worth? For Danny Willett, the answer as 50,000 followers, which have followed @Danny_Willett since Sunday morning after winning #TheMasters.


The eSports Championship Series, the new initiative by FACEIT and Twitch, announced that the Counter-Strike: Global Offensive teams that will participate in the debut season of ECS. Matches start today and will be shown exclusively on FACEIT’s official Twitch channel. ECS – Counter-Strike will feature 20 teams (10 from North America and 10 from Europe) with $3.5 million up for grabs in payout for prize money and financial support.


ESPN names Freddy Rolon as the new VP and GM of ESPN Deportes, where he will oversee all aspects of the brand’s business. He joined ESPN in 2004, has held the position of VP of ESPN Deportes Programming and Business Initiatives since 2011.

Learfield announced the addition of Senior Vice President-Digital Media Scott Carlis, who will overall digital strategy and expansion of products and solutions for its collegiate partners. Carlis joins Learfield from AEG Global Partnerships, where he served nearly five years as vice president of digital, social media and marketing.

Jay Parry was named the WNBA’s new COO. Parry previously spent seven seasons as the President and COO of the Phoenix Mercury and will now lead all team and league efforts to generate revenue.

UFC named Rene Valencia as Vice President of Marketing Partnerships. Prior to joining UFC, he served as the Global Head of Sponsorship  MP & Silva, as well as Director  International Business Development with the NBA.


Thunder/Spurs on TNT at 8p.


April 21  | New York Athletic Club  | 8:15-10:30am | REGISTER NOW

CYNOPSIS SPORTS will honor 4 executives who changed the way their sports entities connected with fans around the country:

LEGACY AWARD — Eric Shanks, President, COO & EP – Fox Sports
VISION AWARD — Don Garber, Commissioner – MLS
NAVIGATOR AWARD – Rob McGlarry, President – MLB Network
GEM AWARD – Mike O’Brien, VP, Corp. & Prod. Planning – Hyundai

ON THIS DAY in 1877: A catcher’s mask is used for the first time in a baseball game by James Alexander Tyng.

In The Know: What is Kobe Bryant’s middle name? (Email Chris-Sports@cynopsis.com with your answer and be sure to include your name, company and city.)

Answer to Our Last Sports Trivia Question: Which New York Ranger has the record for all-time goals for the franchise? Answer: Rod Gilbert. Kudos: Jon Clateman-Frozen Ropes/NY; Chris Long-FloSports/NY; Joel Maxwell/NY; Jeff Day-NHL/NY; John Collins-Media Storm/South Norwalk; Jerry A. Kapner-Kapner Group/Montclair; Andy Pittman-TAMU/College Station; Judie Henninger-Valentine Productions/Santa Monica; Tom Moore-Kalt Productions/LA; David Westberg-SAG-AFTRA Federal Credit Union/Burbank; Scott Brofman-Renegade83/LA.

Later — Chris
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