Friday, October 11th, 2013

Cynopsis: Sports
10.11.13

Good morning. It’s Friday, October 11, 2013, and this is your first early morning Sports briefing. 

The PGA of America and NBC Sports Group revealed an upgraded extension of their partnership for the Ryder Cup, the Senior PGA Championship presented by KitchenAid, and PGA Professionals across NBC and Golf Channel beginning in 2015. The partnership runs through 2030 and includes eight additional Ryder Cups on NBC, as well as all-language and simultaneous streaming rights for NBC’s Ryder Cup coverage. New to the deal are extra programming and special coverage of the event including: regular Ryder Cup preview shows, vignettes, features, reports and points updates on NBC and Golf Channel; a Ryder Cup Documentary Series on both networks; live coverage of practice rounds (for the first time ever) and the Ryder Cup Captain Selection Show on Golf Channel; and new Ryder Cup highlight programming on Telemundo and Mun2 to expand Hispanic viewership opportunities.

On the Air

Amid some recent changes on ESPN’s NBA Countdown just before the new season, Magic Johnson has decided to leave the show. In a statement released to the press, Johnson stated that because of his commitments, he didn’t feel confident that he could devote the time needed for the role. Earlier this week, the network announced the addition of Doug Collins to the show, and Sports Illustrated writes that Doris Burke will join the series as a studio analyst as well. The addition would make Burke the first woman to serve as a regularly-appearing analyst for a national NBA studio show.

Game 5 between the Pittsburgh Pirates and the St. Louis Cardinals generated 6.1 million viewers for TBS, marking an uptick of 69% over comparable Wednesday coverage in 2012. The game delivered a 3.9 household rating, based on Nielsen Fast Nationals, with a 33.6 in St. Louis and a 31.1 in Pittsburgh.
 
Meanwhile, TBS announced plans for its 2013 National League Championship Series coverage between the Dodgers and Cardinals with Game 1 set for tonight at 8:30p. Ernie Johnson will call the series alongside analysts Ron Darling and Cal Ripken with reporter Craig Sager.
 
Around the dial, FOX Sports is gearing up for its turn at the plate for the MLB Postseason, announcing that beginning with ALCS Games 1 & 2, 2013 National League batting champion Michael Cuddyer will join MLB on FOX pregame host Matt Vasgersian and analyst Harold Reynolds for pregame coverage. Gabe Kapler, Eric Karros and Jimmy Rollins will provide postgame analysis. Joe Buck and Tim McCarver will call each game, joined by reporters Ken Rosenthal and Erin Andrews, who contribute postgame analysis and interviews for FOX Sports Live.

TNT and PGA.com announced plans to present coverage of the 2013 PGA Grand Slam of Golf with four major champions competing Tuesday and Wednesday, Oct.15-16. This year’s foursome features defending PGA Grand Slam of Golf Champion and three-time Major Champion Padraig Harrington, Masters Champion Adam Scott, U.S. Open Champion Justin Rose and PGA Champion Jason Dufner. Coverage begins Tuesday, Oct. 15 at 4p with all four players mic’d throughout course play for cut-ins and a daily feature. Brian Anderson handles play-by-play with analyst Ian Baker-Finch and Billy Kratzert (course reporter).
 
ESPNU revealed plans to expand its on-site coverage from six conference media days, with 9.5 hours across four days on deck. The ESPNU College Basketball Media Day Specials will offer interviews and analysis from the ACC, American, Big Ten, Big 12, Pac-12 and SEC conferences. Media Days on ESPNU tips off on Wed, Oct. 16 at 1p with Jim Boeheim and Mike Krzyzewski – in-studio.

ESPN Deportes has tapped the services of Rosana Franco to serve as one of the hosts of Raza Deportiva, the network’s first live morning simulcast show. Franco will be joining Omar Orlando and Leo Vega in Miami, with David Faitelson and Rafa Ramos in Los Angeles; and Oscar Restrepo from Bogota, Colombia. Prior to ESPN Deportes, Franco served as the host of Univision’s Republica Deportiva for 13 years.

Sportsman Channel added six new markets to the bag via Cox Communications. The new markets include: Connecticut, Hartford suburbs; Parma, OH; Northern Virginia (Fairfax County,Fredericksburg, Hampton Roads, VA Beach, Norfolk, Newport News); Omaha, NE; Sun Valley/Ketchum, ID; and Providence, Newport, RI.

Being: Mariano Rivera, a 90-minute television documentary from FOX Sports Originals, Relativity Television and Major League Baseball Productions is set to air on Oct. 20 at FOX at 2:30 or 4:30p with an encore presentation slated for FOX Sports 1 on Oct. 22 at 9:30a.


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Sponsorship & Promotion

Bell Canada locked in a new multi-year strategic partnership with the NBA that beefs up its role as the official communications partner for the league in Canada. Bell is now set to become presenting partner of NBA Canada Series as well as NBA All-Star Balloting. Customers will also be able to access new weekly content on the smartphones and tablets during the regular season and playoffs.

Digital & Technology

Amid a bevy of speakers that included Michelle Kwan, Tina Charles, Gabrielle Reece, Mia Hamm, Lisa Andersen, Sanya Richards-Ross, Summer Sanders and more at the espnW Women + Sports Summit, ESPN President John Skipper reaffirmed the company’s commitment to women’s sports initiatives. Skipper revealed that espnW and ESPN Films will continue their Nine for IX series collaboration with an annual digital short films series with the first five short films set to debut in summer 2014. The Nine for IX Shorts series will be made available on multiple digital ESPN platforms and rolled out on TV, mobile devices and applications, as well as on the web via espnW and ESPN.com. The series will continue to be executive produced by Robin Roberts of Good Morning America and Jane Rosenthal, co-founder of Tribeca Productions.
 
espnW also revealed a new annual power ranking list – the espnW Impact 10 – that spotlights the 10 female athletes who made a significant impact on and off the field during the past year. The Impact 10 tells the athletes’ stories from 2013 via videos, columns and articles, photo galleries and athlete profiles. SportsCenter will count down the top five athletes as well as show their video vignettes. The Impact 10 list will be determined by an industry panel of judges, with opportunities for fans to debate and vote on espnW.com and through Twitter.

THQ is reportedly suing Electronic Arts and UFC parent company Zuffa, claiming that the two brands conspired to end THQ’s agreement with UFC so the company could work with EA. The complaint was filed in the US District Court in Delaware on October 4.

USA TODAY Sports Digital Properties re-launched NBA news site HoopsHype.com. The relaunch will see more premium user experience that “optimizes viewing of content and video across mobile, tablet and desktop.”  

The Main Event

Saints/Patriots in a potential Super Bowl preview this Sunday at 1p on FOX.


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Cynopsis eReport Series: Demographic Viewing Patterns
Cynopsis Editors will take a look at the viewing patterns of various Demographics. Each of these Special eReports will uncover the Who, What and the Where – who these people are, what they are watching, where they are watching… and more!

OCT 16 // Millennials (sold out)
OCT 24 // Women (sold out)
NOV 13 // Hispanics
NOV 20 // Kids, Tweens & Teens

Advertising space is limited. Contact Mike Farina: 203.218.6480


ON THIS DAY in 1960: John Fetzer acquires controlling interest of the Detroit Tigers.

In The Know: Lisa Andersen is a four-time world champion in what sport? (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: Ken Caminiti was the NL MVP while playing for what team? Answer: The San Diego Padres in 1996. Kudos: Bill Hirsh-WWE/NY; Michael Brown-PGA TOUR/NY; Barry McMullin-PBR/NY; Anthony Dattolo-ZenithMedia/NY; Matt Guertin-Active International/Pearl River; G. David Brown-FOX Sports/Charlotte; Tom Wetzel-MMSI/Warwick; Mark Altabe-Citibank, NA/Jersey City; Bill Adusei-Comcast SportsNet/Houston; Michael Jaquet-U.S. Ski and Snowboard Association/Park City; Jeff C. Fellenzer-University of Southern California/LA; Larry Hutchings-Pacific Palisades; Anne Wettig-Fox Sports 1/LA; Neal Stevens-Stevens & Associates/Beverly Hills.

Later — Chris
Chris Pursell for Cynopsis | Sports
10.11.13

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