10/29/14: MNF battle tears it up; Telemundo launches World Cup plans; NBA, Kia renew vows


Good morning. It’s Wednesday, October 29, 2014, and this is your first early morning Sports briefing. 

A classic rivalry drove ESPN to a season high for Monday Night Football, as the Redskins’ overtime win over the Cowboys drew an 11.4 household rating with 18,809,000 viewers tuning in, according to Nielsen. In fact, the game marked the highest-rated MNF game since the Saints/Patriots on Nov. 30, 2009 and the most-viewed game in 2010. In Washington, D.C., the game delivered a 17.8 rating on ESPN and a 12.6 on WDCA-IND, for a combined 30.4 rating in the market. In Dallas, the game delivered a 14.0 rating on ESPN and a 22.6 on WFAA-ABC, for a combined 36.6 rating in the market.


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CBC/Radio-Canada was awarded the Canadian broadcast rights for the Olympic Games in 2018 in PyeongChang, South Korea, and 2020 in Tokyo. The company announced that it would work with broadcast partner Bell Media, along with Rogers Media, to provide Canadians with full access to the Games.

Telemundo and mun2 officially took over as the official Spanish-language Home of the FIFA World Cup in the US, unveiling of the FIFA World Cup Russia 2018 emblem in Moscow. The company also announced its broadcast plans for the upcoming other FIFA Events in 2015 to be featured across the Telemundo network and stations, mun2 and all its digital properties with 188 FIFA Events matches on deck totaling more than 550 hours of FIFA soccer. “Three years and one week ago, NBCUniversal announced the game-changing acquisition of the exclusive Spanish-language US media rights to the FIFA World Cup,” said Joe Uva, Chairman, Hispanic Enterprises and Content, NBCUniversal. “Today we are proud to see the first tangible manifestation of this major acquisition, which will bring unprecedented exposure for Telemundo and mun2 and offer a unique opportunity to accelerate audience growth and consolidate our position in the industry.”

The Madison Square Garden Company is mulling a breakup in a move that could divorce the Knicks and Rangers away from the company’s live entertainment business. In a statement, MSG said that its board had been weighing such a split since July with the new sports entity that would include the teams as well as MSG.

Brad Daugherty has signed on to stay at ESPN where he will serve as an NBA and college basketball analyst starting next month. Daugherty will appear regularly on NBA Tonight, NBA Coast to Coast, SportsCenter and on additional news and information programming. He will also serve as an analyst for most games in ESPNU’s ACC Sunday night package starting in December.

NBA TV series The Association series is slated to return tonight at 6p with behind-the-scenes coverage of the Cleveland Cavaliers as they prepare for the 2014-15 NBA season. This year, The Association will provide multiple episodes on different teams throughout the 2014-15 season.

ESPN selected Scottsdale Fashion Square as the production headquarters for Super Bowl XLIX in Arizona. The company has slated over 120 hours of ESPN television and radio coverage and other related content across the company’s multimedia platforms from  Monday, January 26 through Sunday, February 1, 2015. Overall, ESPN will utilize three outdoor stages and a 24-by-48-foot demo field at Scottsdale Fashion Square with shows set to originate from the set that include Mike and Mike, SportsCenter, NFL Insiders, NFL Live and a special four-hour edition of Sunday NFL Countdown on Super Bowl Sunday.

Submit your entries now for the Leaderboard, with 2014 winners set to be announced at the Cynopsis Sports Social Media Summit on Dec. 8. Click here to submit your entry now. Meanwhile, we are thrilled to welcome another great name to the roster with Major League Gaming President and Co-Founder Mike Sepso set as a keynote speaker at this year’s event where he will address the explosive growth of eSports and its impact on the industry. Register at http://www.sportssocialmediasummit.com.

SiriusXM signed Bob Ford to host a new show on SiriusXM PGA TOUR Radio that will center on amateur golf and showcase some of the best non-professional players in the country. The series, Playing for Pride with Bob Ford debuts this January
El Rey Network launches Lucha Underground tonight at 8p, from famed producer Mark Burnett, with runs in Spanish slated to run on UniMas on Saturdays at 4p. The series will offer viewers a looks at the “masked villains and heroes face off to battle for wrestling supremacy resulting in programming that is unlike anything else on the screen.”


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The NBA is going long with Kia Motors America, announcing a new multiyear extension of their marketing partnership, which began in 2008. In addition to continuing to serve as the league’s Official Automotive Partner, Kia will now be known as the Official Luxury Vehicle of the NBA. Kia will continue as the Official Automotive Partner of NBA All-Star and the title partner of Kia NBA Tip-Off, the Kia NBA Performance Awards, and the Kia NBA All-Star MVP award.  Kia also will expand its relationship to serve as an Official Automotive Partner of the Women’s National Basketball Association (WNBA) and NBA Development League (NBA D-League).


The top five most mentioned NFL players on Twitter during Week 8 of play, through 10/27:
1.  Tom Brady
2.  Geno Smith (@GenoSmith7)
3.  Tony Romo
4.  Peyton Manning
5.  Dez Bryant (@DezBryant)

The top five most Tweeted games during and around live telecasts by number of Tweets, as measured by Nielsen Social (@NielsenSocial):

1  @Redskins vs @dallascowboys (ESPN)
2  @ChicagoBears vs. @Patriots (FOX)
3  @Colts vs. @Steelers (CBS)
4  @Eagles vs. @AZCardinals (FOX)
5  @Chargers vs. @Broncos (CBS; NFL Network)


theScore, Inc. announced new records for the three months and year ending August 31. The company saw average monthly active users of theScore’s mobile platforms reaching a record 9.18 million in Q4 F2014, marking an increase of 151% compared to the same period in F2013. Average monthly active users of theScore’s mobile apps reached 4.04 million in Q4 F2014, an increase of 42% compared to the same period in F2013.


Fox Broadcasting President of Sales Toby Byrne has been promoted to President, Advertising Sales for Fox Networks Group. He will now oversee national ad sales functions and revenue generating strategies for FNG’s domestic entertainment and sports television businesses, including Fox Broadcasting, FOX Sports, and the company’s array of national cable outlets and their non-linear extensions. 

BACK9NETWORK expanded its recently formed Advisory Board, naming Steve Astephen, Tom DiBenedetto, Chris Lencheski, and Gregg Tryhus to the organization. Charles Cox, BACK9NETWORK’s CEO commented, “Our Advisory Board is a great example of how our network thinks differently. We have assembled a great management team and employee base that continues to impress me each day. But we are humble enough to recognize that an independent network that competes on its own merits for carriage fees, advertising, and audience will need some strategic counsel along the way.”

Haas F1 Team named Adam Jacobs as its CMO where he will lead brand strategy and partnership development for Haas F1 Team, which will make its debut in the FIA Formula 1 World Championship in 2016, becoming the first American-led Formula One team in 30 years. Jacobs comes from Anheuser-Busch where he was the sports marketing manager for the company’s Budweiser brand in NASCAR and the Bud Light brand in the NFL and college sports.


If no World Series Game 7 on FOX, then check out Bulls/Knicks on ESPN at 8p.

ON THIS DAY in 2008: The Phillies become World Series Champions, beating the Rays in Game 5.

In The Know: Which NFL player is the Buccaneers all-time leading rusher? (Email Chris-Sports@cynopsis.com with your answer and be sure to include your name, company, city and time zone. Unofficial rules: Only the second four correct answers from each time zone will be mentioned; and once you’ve been mentioned in any of the Cynopsis editions, you can’t be mentioned again that calendar week.)

Answer to Our Last Sports Trivia Question: Mean Joe Greene gave up his jersey in a commercial for what brand? Answer: Coca-Cola. Kudos: Mitch Burg-Impact Communications/Israel; Karen Van Vleet-Insight Strategy Group/NY; Rob Maffei-INSP/NY; Deborah Kapetanakis-Universal McCann/NY; Bob Ahrens-WFUV/NY; Joe Guarnieri-ESPN/Bristol; Maureen Akers-WTVM/Raycom Media; Tim Buckman-NBC Sports Group/Stamford; Lance Henik-Leger/Fort Washington; Meg Glenn-Comcast Spotlight/Jackson; Bill Robertson-WCHA/Edina; Brad Brown-B2 Consulting, LLC/St Louis; Thom Sutton-Telemundo/Chicago; Chris Faivre-Las Cruces Convention and Visitors/Las Cruces; Greg Moloznik-GLM Media/Scottsdale; Michael Jaquet-US Ski and Snowboard Assoc./Park City; Brienne Chance-G/O Digital/Phoenix; Warren Weideman-Producer/LA; Curtis Nettles-CBS TV Stations/LA; John Baghdassarian-Olympusat/LA; Jim Himmel-TCB Media/San Clemente.

Later — Chris
Chris Pursell for
Cynopsis | Sports @VegasandVine

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