Good morning. It’s Thursday, January 16, 2014, and this is your first early morning Sports briefing.
ESPN announced plans for its 25th season of Sunday Night Baseball presented by Taco Bell, with a slate of early games that will include three appearances each by the World Series Champion Boston Red Sox, National League Champion St. Louis Cardinals, Los Angeles Dodgers, New York Yankees and Baltimore Orioles. The season launches with MLB’s Opening Night on ESPN with Dodgers/Padres on March 30 at 8p. Early matchups include Giants/Dodgers on April 6 (on ESPN2), red Sox/Yankees on April 13, and Orioles/Red Sox on April 20. Other highlights include the Pirates return to the franchise for the first time since 2002.
Is an NFL simulcast on the horizon? SBJ reports that the league is mandating that the winning bidder of its Thursday night game package simulcast the games with NFL Network. The report states that the NFL included the language in the proposal that it sent to TV networks last week, which included its current TV partners as well as Turner Sports, specifying that the winning bidder’s live linear feed “will be simulcast by NFL Network.”
Meanwhile, expect an announcement as early as today on the new MLS package, which has been expected to land at ESPN and FOX. The package will kick in after the 2014, with the New York Times writing that the new deal is likely to be announced during the National Soccer Coaches Association of America convention, which begins today in Philadelphia.
Deportes Telemundo reports that its series, Titulares Telemundo ranked as the top late fringe sports news commentary show in Spanish-language TV in 2013. The series drummed up an average of 394,000 total viewers, up 17% over 2012, according to Nielsen. In addition, Deportes Telemundo franchises Titulares y Mas and Ritmo Deportivo also delivered double digit growth, with the former delivering an average 336,000 total viewers, up 24% year-to-year, while Ritmo Deportivo averaged 290,000 total viewers and rose 87% in its new schedule.
NBA TV will offer fans a special on Friday at 5:30p that goes behind the scenes of the Pacers and examines their rivalry with the Heat. The show, On a Mission: Indiana Pacers, serves as a 30-minute NBA TV Originals special, with Reggie Miller narrating the story of his former team.
It just keeps getting better! Join us on Jan. 30 for the Cynopsis Sports Breakfast of Champions event in NY for a New Year’s lesson on branding 2014. Newly added to the list of speakers is Bonnie Bernstein, Vice President of Content and Brand Development at Campus Insiders who will moderate our panel on athletes and branding, featuring NFL Players Inc. President Keith Gordon, NFL athletes Pierre Garcon and Keith Rivers, Golf Channel’s Frank Nobilo and ESPN’s Jay Williams. Speakers are also set to include keynote from IMG’s George Pyne and Anheuser-Busch’s Blaise D’Sylva, as well as a special presentation on the Year in Sports from Nielsen’s Stephen Masters. Click here to register.
In addition to NFL action, some addition drama is in store this weekend with live and next day coverage on NBC and NBCSN as the first-ever US Olympic Freeskiing Team will be named in Park City in addition to the US Snowboarding Team being selected in Mammoth. The action hits the gate tomorrow at 3p on NBCSN with the Sprint US Snowboarding Grand Prix, while the US Freeskiing Grand Prix begins at 11p.
NFL Network’s first-ever Pro Bowl Draft show will be hosted by Chris Rose, as the one-hour program will see Deion Sanders and Jerry Rice select their teams. The program runs starting Tuesday at 8p with the selections of centers, guards, interior defensive linemen, fullbacks and specialists for each team, while Wednesday’s episode will see picks for quarterbacks, running backs, wide receivers, tight ends, tackles, defensive ends, linebackers and defensive backs. The Pro Bowl will be played on Sunday, Jan. 26 at 7p on NBC.
Ron Perlman voices CBS’ NFL Championship Chase on Sunday at 1p. The CBS Sports Spectacular program runs at 1p and will follow the path each of the four teams took to get to their respective Conference Championship Sunday.
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Cynopsis: Sports Media Awards
Honoring Top Sports Programs, Campaigns and People
Our awards show continues to spotlight the groundbreaking work created by sports media and as we return for 2014, don’t let your efforts go unnoticed! Enter today for the Sports Media industry’s top honor – we look forward to seeing your submissions!
Enter Now: Click Here | Entry Questions: Peter Romas.
Anheuser-Busch laid out plans to debut five new ads during the Super Bowl XLVIII broadcast on FOX on Sunday, Feb. 2, with 3.5 minutes of creative dedicated to Bud Light and Budweiser. The game will mark the launch of Bud Light’s new creative campaign, “The Perfect Beer for Whatever Happens,” as two corresponding “Epic Night” units totaling 90 seconds and telling one cohesive story across two ad blocks-are aired. The brand will also use its time to debut the new Bud Light reclosable aluminum bottle with a 30-second spot title “So Cool.”
As for Budweiser, they will be in the game with a 60-second and a 30-second spot-both featuring the famed Budweiser Clydesdales. Budweiser will continue its support of the U.S. military and celebrate returning troops with “Hero’s Welcome” while “Puppy Love” continues the story of 2013’s celebrated “Brotherhood” spot and focuses on the connections animals share with one another at Warm Springs Ranch.
The NBA announced nine marketing partners for its NBA Global Games London 2014 fan experience. On deck will be 2K, adidas, Bilbao, Gatorade, Foot Locker, London and Partners, SAP, Sprite, and TUI. The league will tip off NBA Global Games London 2014 with a regular season game between the Nets/Hawks tonight on NBA TV.
The NBA also announced plans for this year’s BBVA Compass Rising Stars Challenge, pitting the league’s best rookies and sophomores during NBA All-Star 2014. Through February 5, NBA fans will have the opportunity to enter a sweepstakes by voting for their favorite rookie player, with a shot to win a Grand Prize trip to a 2014 NBA Playoff game. Additional elements of the BBVA Compass Rising Stars Sweepstakes will be announced in the coming weeks.
Smithfield Foods, Inc. and Richard Petty Motorsports (RPM), along with NASCAR officials, announced a three-year extension and increased investment in Smithfield Foods’ NASCAR program with Richard Petty Motorsports. The company and its family of brands, including Eckrich, Farmland, Gwaltney, Nathan’s and Smithfield, will return as primary sponsors of the No. 43 Ford Fusion driven by Aric Almirola in the NASCAR Sprint Cup Series for 29 races in 2014 and beyond under a contract that extends through the end of the 2016 season.
The clock is ticking so what are you waiting for? Time is running out! Submissions are being accepted now for the Cynopsis Sports Media Awards to show the world your best work. Click here to enter.
The Nintendo classic is back! MLBAM announced that it is developing R.B.I. Baseball 14, a new take on the video game brand updating an old fave that hasn’t been seen in nearly two decades. The game is being developed for multi-platform distribution across current and next generation consoles and smartphones and tablets.
The North American Soccer League is partnering up with digital sports content group PERFORM for league as well as each club’s websites. PERFORM owns one of the largest digital sports rights portfolios, including soccer site Goal.com, through contracts covering more than 200 sports and their associated leagues, tournaments and events. Live streaming NASL matches will now become part of a monthly subscription package that will include access to all games both live and archived on demand. Subscribers will also have access to additional premium video content, all for a nominal monthly fee of $4.99.
Thunder/Rockets on TNT at 9:30p.
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The Cynopsis Media Boot Camp
One-Day Immersion In Ratings Analysis, Web/Social Analytics + Multi-platform Buying
Thomas Ziangas, SVP, Research, AMC Networks
Audrey Siegel, President & Co-Founder, TargetCast tcm
Ron Geraci, EVP, Research & Planning, Nickelodeon Group
Adam Pincus, EVP, Programming & Production, GroupM Ent.
Feb. 11, 2014| Yale Club NY |Early Bird Ends 1/27 |Register Now!.
ON THIS DAY in 1988: NFL’s St. Louis Cardinals announce move to Phoenix.
In The Know: Tougher one. A regulation golf ball has how many dimples?(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: What is the name of the Boston Red Sox mascot? Answer: Wally the Green Monster. Kudos: Rachel Leber-Major League Soccer/NY; Michael Dittelman-SportsOnEarth.com/NY; Sean Brennan-CBS Sports Network/NY; David Pereira-CBS Local/NY; Larry Kahn-Golf Channel/Orlando; Mike Antolini-Tiger Woods Foundation/Boston; Jeff Crehan-Media Storm LLC/Norwalk; Patty Massaro/Yorktown Heights; Joe Ferreira-Learfield Sports/Plano; Lila Brown-Ella Bee Media Group/LA; Brian Sullivan-KHQ-TV/Spokane; Julia Sen-NATPE/LA; Mary Downey-Mary Downey Casting/Burbank.
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Jan. 30, 2014|8-10:30AM|New York Athletic Club (NYAC)
Stephen Master – SVP Global Head of Sports Practice (Nielsen)
Blaise D’Sylva – VP of Media, Sports & Ent. (Anheuser-Busch)
Later — Chris
Chris Pursell for Cynopsis | Sports
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