10/19/17: TNT opens NBA season on a run; AT&T Stadium feels a Draft; Jamaica hits the court

CynopsisSports
Good morning. It’s Thursday October 19, 2017 and this is your first early morning Sports briefing.
The NBA season opened with a bang on Tuesday as TNT’s exclusive coverage of the Celtics/Cavaliers and Rockets/Warriors propelled the channel to win the night across all of cable television in primetime, based on Nielsen metered market numbers. The network’s Celtics/Cavs battle averaged 5.6 million total viewers – up 95% over last year – to rank as the network’s second most-watched Opening Night telecast of all time. The late telecast averaged 4.2 million viewers, up 22% over the network’s comparable game last year. Overall, TNT’s NBA Opening Night doubleheader averaged 4.9 million viewers for an increase of 53% over the comparable games last year and ranked as the network’s most-watched NBA Opening Night coverage since 2010.
 
Meanwhile, live streaming coverage of NBA Opening Night averaged 8.9 million minutes of consumption, up 43% over last year.  The Celtics/Cavs game registered the largest streaming average audience ever for an NBA regular season game on Turner.
 
 
ON THE AIR
Meanwhile, Turner’s sister channel TBS saw its presentation of the 2017 National League Championship Series averaged six million viewers. Viewership for the Dodgers’ win in Game 3 is up 40% over last year’s LCS Game 3 coverage airing on the network with the NLCS on TBS overall averaging 6.4 million viewers to date, for a markup of 73% over last year’s comparable LCS telecasts airing on the network.
 
In NFL news, the league announced that the 83rd NFL Draft will take place on from April 26-28 at the Dallas Cowboys’ AT&T Stadium in Arlington, marking the first time in history that it will be held at an NFL stadium. The Draft site will encompass the field, stands, and outdoor plazas, creating an all-encompassing atmosphere and enabling more fans than ever before to watch their favorite team’s selections.
 
Meanwhile, NFL Commissioner Roger Goodell told press that while he believed that players should stand for the national anthem, the league will not impose a rule enforcing the practice. “We believe everyone should stand for the national anthem. That’s an important part of our policy,” Goodell told reporters in New York, noting that “Our players will state to you publicly they are not doing this in any way to be disrespectful to the flag,” and added that the league is “not looking to get into politics, but what we’re looking to do is to continue to give people a focus on football.”
 
NBC serves up Notre Dame and USC on Saturday at 7:30p. Live pre-game coverage begins at 7p with Countdown to Kickoff on NBCSN. The game marks the first time that both Notre Dame and USC enter the annual battle for the Jeweled Shillelagh as ranked teams since 2009, and the best combined ranking in the game since 2006. Commentary is handled by Mike Tirico, alongside Doug Flutie, who serves as lead analyst for Notre Dame Football on NBC, and sideline reporter Kathryn Tappen. Liam McHugh hosts studio coverage of Notre Dame Football on NBC, alongside Chris Simms.
 
BTN opens the 2017-18 Big Ten basketball season begins today with Big Ten Basketball Media Day in New York City with coaches press conferences from 9a-noon, followed by additional interviews and analysis with Dave Revsine and Jon Crispin. Then, coaches and students from each of the 14 schools will visit the set to discuss the upcoming season. New this year to BTN will be basketball journalist Andy Katz and former Purdue star Robbie Hummel who will join an experienced group of analysts that includes Shon Morris, Jon Crispin, Stephen Bardo, Mike DeCourcy, Bob Wenzel, and Dan Bonner. Along with Lisa Byington, the Network’s lead play-by-play voice for women’s basketball, BTN also returns a cast of women’s basketball analysts, including Christy Winters Scott, Vera Jones, Shelley Till and Brenda Van Lengen.
 
International drone racing organization DR1 Racing announced the company’s flagship drone racing series, the DHL Champions Series Fueled by Mountain Dew. The slate will debut on beIN SPORTS today with the series Finals running on CBS Sports on Nov. 4 at 1:30p. This will be the first ever drone racing program to appear on either CBS or beIN.
 
Pac-12 Networks lined up live coverage this weekend of the second edition of the USA College Challenge, a two-day dual meet pitting members of the USA Swimming National Team against swimming stars from the Pac-12 at USC’s Uytengsy Aquatics Center. Coverage starts Sat. at 6p PT and sees Rich Burk and Rowdy Gaines on the call.  
 
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SPONSORSHIP & PROMOTION

Van Wagner Sports & Entertainment, the Jamaica Tourist Board, the Ministry of Culture, Gender, Entertainment and Sport and SMG/Montego Bay Convention Centre unveiled the Jamaica Classic, an annual pre-season college basketball tournament that will be held in Montego Bay. The inaugural event takes place Nov. 17-19 with seven teams currently on board – Florida State University, Colorado State University, Fordham University, Tulane University, University of Hartford, Miami University and LIU Brooklyn. Five of the games will be televised live on CBS Sports Network.

Professional Bull Riders have a new ride, announcing the formation of a new record label, PBR Music, and its first artist, country singer/songwriter in US Army Combat Veteran Ryan Weaver. Weaver will record music for the league and perform at its events as the Official Patriotic Voice of the PBR’s Celebrate America campaign, an initiative throughout the PBR season that honors American heroes, inspires youth and brings together local communities. He will make his debut in the primetime performance slot at the PBR World Finals at T-Mobile Arena in Las Vegas on Nov. 4 and 5.

PGA TOUR Champions launched three new 30-second commercials on Golf Channel as part of a 2017 Charles Schwab Cup ad campaign. The commercials, highlighted by the return of PGA TOUR Champions Ambassador Alfonso Ribeiro, will be featured throughout the second annual Charles Schwab Cup Playoffs and serve as a continuation of the “Where Legends Play” campaign introduced in 2016.

 
 
DIGITAL & STREAMING

OMNIGON officially launched its newest platform, Corebine, with features that include a mobile-first approach, the ability to be deployed in conjunction with ProSuite, OMNIGON’s set of fan engagement tools, as well as be integrated with an existing CRM system enabling rightsholders to run sweepstakes and collect data about their fans. “Leveraging our years of experience working in the space, we realized a gap in the market,” said Nick Arcuri, OMNIGON’s Vice President of Product. “Digital content platforms needed to evolve into fan and audience engagement platforms designed to reach consumers where they are. Our team spent quite a while creating this evolving, future-proofed solution.”

Monsterful VR locked in a partnership with Jeremy Booth, PROGRAM 15, and the New Balance Baseball Future Stars Series to design and implement a custom programmed Virtual Reality training system to enhance player development through technology. The produce will launch in the first quarter of 2018 and utilize virtual reality to enhance pitch recognition and reaction time while minimizing injury risk is the perfect marriage of sport and technology.

 
 
ESPORTS

In this week’s edition of Cynopsis Esports & Gaming

  • League of Legends shores up franchise partners
  • Amazon talks mobile wars
  • ELEAGUE prepares to deliver Injustice
  • DreamHack delivers Denver Drones
  • Supercell prepares Royale Crown
  • Valve embraces community
  • The Bureau nabs the CW
  • Red Bull gives Tempo Storm wings
 
  
THE MAIN EVENT
If no NLCS Game 5 on TBS, then Chiefs/Raiders on CBS/NFL Network/Amazon Prime at 8:25p.
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November 10 | 12pm – 2pm | NYC
 
41  Digital “It List” Honorees,  71  Model D Finalists and  6  celebrity presenters make for 
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SEE MODEL D FINALISTS            SEE “IT LIST” HONOREES            REGISTER YOUR TEAM
 
ON THIS DAY in 1936: The Associated Press releases its first-ever poll to rank major college football teams, with Minnesota ranked first.
 
In the Know: Who was the last player taken with the #1 pick of the NFL Draft, who wasn’t categorized as a QB, OT or DE? (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: The longest-standing active Olympic record was made by Bob Beamon in 1968 in what sport?  Answer: Long jump. Kudos: Larry Kahn-Golf Channel/Auckland; John Ferlazzo/London; Bruce Jackson-Disney and ESPN Media Networks/NY; Aymon DeMauro-Discovery Communications/NY; Matt Meachem-Gracenote/NY; Denis Barry-CBS/NY; Ken Nice-TeamPeople/DC; Troy Perlowitz-ESPN/Charlotte; Willy Gibson-WTG Consulting/Columbus; Kevin McIntyre-Amayse Inc./Boston; Joe Lyons-SOS Global/Dallas; Robert Teinowitz-Live Action Media/Chicago; Mark Stulberger-Stully’s Broadcasting School/Houston; Lance Phegley-Texas Runner & Triathlete magazine/Houston; David Hauptman/Denver; Larry Hutchings/Nipomo; Jack Simmons-US Army Reserve/LA; Tony Reyes-Stoopid Buddy Stoodios/Burbank; Don Surath-KPIX-TV/KBCW-TV/San Francisco
 
Later — Chris
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