Thursday, January 24th, 2013

Cynopsis: Sports

Good morning. It’s Thursday, January 24, 2012, and this is your first early morning Sports briefing. 

NFL Digital Media laid out plans leading into Super Bowl XLVII, with content spanning,, multiple mobile applications, and more. Both and will stream a live video show from Radio Row at the Media Center that will be hosted by Matt “Money” Smith along with Dave Dameshek, Adam Rank, and Jaime Maggio starting Wednesday Jan. 30 at 1p. Other live streaming videos on will include NFL Commissioner Roger Goodell’s annual Super Bowl press conference and the unveiling of the 2013 Pro Football Hall of Fame Class.

Other digital elements being utilized will include NFL Fan Pass, offering access to players, celebrities and musicians, NFL Game Rewind, and podcasts throughout the week. Of course, the piece de resistance will be live streaming as both and will link to CBS Sports’ live stream on In addition, both sites will post all the Super Bowl commercials after they have aired on the television broadcast.

On the Air

With final numbers in, NBC’s coverage of the NHL on Saturday officially produced the league’s most-watched regular-season broadcast in 14 years (not including the Winter Classics) according to official national data released by Nielsen. Regional coverage of the Blackhawks/Kings as the Penguins/Flyers matchups were watched by 2.77 million viewers with a 1.6 household rating.

Speaking of personal bests, NBA TV’s much-hyped Thunder/Clippers telecast on Tuesday generated a 0.7 rating for the network to ranks as the channel’s highest-rated regular-season game of all time.

ESPN has shifted the men’s semifinals and both the women’s and men’s championship matches of the Australian Open from ESPN2 to the mothership on ESPN. The move will now see the Women’s Championship run on Saturday at 3a, followed by encore showings on ESPN2 at 9a and 10p. The Men’s Championship then runs Sunday morning at 3a.

MLB Network will air a special MLB Network Remembers: Stan Musial program tonight at 9p. The special will be hosted by MLB Network’s Bob Costas and Tom Verducci, and look back at the life and professional career of Musial, who passed away this past weekend at age 92. Game footage and interviews from Musial’s playing career will be featured throughout the show.

Meanwhile, the Cincinnati Reds have been awarded MLB’s 2015 All-Star Game, marking the first time in 27 years the city gets the game and fifth time overall. This season’s All-Star Game will be played at the home of the New York Mets while the 2014 Midsummer Classic will take place in Minneapolis.

FX’s showcase of UFC on FX 7: Belfort vs. Bisping from Brazil drew record ratings for the channel with 1.9 million viewers tuning in to the telecast. That easily bests UFC on FX 2, which previously held the record and recorded 1.4 million viewers.

The Scottish Open is getting a warm welcome stateside. Golf Channel announced online that the event, which is held from July 11-14 this year, will become the first regular European Tour event to be shown live on a major US broadcaster. NBC will offer 2 ½ hours of live coverage during the third and fourth rounds from Castle Stuart in 2013 and Royal Aberdeen in ’14 with rounds one and two on Golf Channel.

The “group of five” college conferences are sorting out plans for a three-tier playoff revenue distribution system, according to CBS Sports, that will reward the conference with the best team as well as the conference with the best overall performance. Overall, more than half of the $86 million playoff pot would be distributed via base shares to the Big East, Mountain West, Mid-American Conference, Conference USA and Sun Belt. 
Universal Sports Network revealed plans for this weekend’s Winter Bowl programming lineup which will span Friday through Sunday. The channel will air over 30 hours of winter sports action that will include the FIS Alpine Skiing World Cup in Kitzbuhel, Austria and Maribor, Slovenia; the Bobsled World Championships in St. Moritz, Switzerland; the World Sprint Speed Skating Championships in Salt Lake City; the U.S. Figure Skating Championships in Omaha; and the FIS Snowboard World Championships in Stoneham, Canada.

Shaquille O’Neal is set to host truTV’s new series Upload with Shaquille O’Neal, which will debut Thursday, Feb. 21, at 10:30p. The series will feature Shaq, along with co-hosts Gary Owen and Godfrey delving for online videos. In addition, the trio will also make their own viral videos, pull pranks and create parodies of current pop culture stories.

The most valuable franchise in the NBA now represents the east coast. The New York Knicks have supplanted the Los Angeles Lakers as the most valuable team in the NBA, according to Forbes’ annual study. The increase was based on renovations to Madison Square Garden, that pushed the team’s worth to $1.1 billion. The Lakers were second at $1 billion. The Bulls, Celtics and Mavericks rounded out the top five.

Speaking of MSG, MSG Networks’ telecasts of the season openers of the Rangers and Islanders on Saturday drew the highest regular season ratings on MSG and MSG+ in more than a decade for both teams. MSG’s telecast of the Rangers/Bruins game scored a 2.88 Nielsen household rating, while the MSG+ telecast of the Islanders/Devils game garnered a 1.00 score, making it the second-highest rated regular season Islanders game on the network ever.

Comcast SportsNet Chicago saw its highest Blackhawks regular season rating ever Tuesday night, with a 5.40 household rating for its live coverage of the Blackhawks home opener against the division rival St. Louis Blues, making it the top-rated network in the Chicago market in all key advertising demos for the evening.

Grand Prix Productions announced that it will be producing the final four events in the World Series of Boxing Tour this season. The events are slated to take place through March and take place in Los Angeles and Reno, Nevada.

Time’s running out! Now is the time to submit for our 2013 Cynopsis Sports Media Awards. The deadline is February 1 and we want to see your best work from the past year. Don’t let someone else take your trophy! Click here for entry information.


Cynopsis Sports Special eReport: Sports Streaming
Whether fans utilize streaming as an alternative viewing option or a second screen experience, we’ll examine the rise and implications of connecting with today’s on-the-go sports fan (who is transforming the experience), the international implications & new revenue opportunities that have opened up. Whether it’s by smartphone, PC or tablet, watching sports will never be the same.

Push Date: January 28

For advertising information, please contact:
Mike Farina
// 203.218.6480

Sponsorship & Promotion

The New Orleans Hornets are set to announce the team’s change of nickname to the Pelicans today in a news conference. The team is also expected to unveil their new colors and logo, which will all be used during the 2013-14 season, according to the AP.

Chip Ganassi Racing Teams locked in a multi-year partnership with Cessna Aircraft Company to sponsor cars across all three series in which CGRT competes. The general aviation company will sponsor multiple races on the No. 1 Chevrolet SS of Jamie McMurray in the NASCAR Sprint Cup Series where it will share assets with sister Textron companies Bell Helicopter and E-Z-GO golf carts. Cessna will also sponsor one race on the No. 10 Honda with Dario Franchitti in the IZOD IndyCar Series and one race with Scott Pruett and Memo Rojas in the GRAND-AM Rolex Sports Car Series on the No. 01 Dinan-Prepared BMW.

Hertz signed a deal with Penske Racing to sponsor seven Nationwide Series races and a Sprint Cup race with the No. 22 Ford of Joey Logano. The rental car company also serve as an associate sponsor of the team. Hertz’s research data showed 20% of NASCAR fans rented a car last year.

Digital Fields

MLB Advanced Media announced that At Bat will support Research In Motion’s new BlackBerry 10 platform when the device comes out this year. The app will be available for purchase on BlackBerry 10 smartphones by Opening Day.

ESPN Internet Ventures announced that ESPN has agreed to provide contingent financing to Shadow League Digital. In exchange for the assistance, ESPN secured certain contingent rights to acquire the assets of the Shadow League after a certain level of investment. ESPN will not have control over any of the site’s operations or activities, although both parties will look for cooperation between platforms.

Lotus is set to become the first Formula One team to reveal its 2013 car when the team launched their Renault-powered E21 on Lotus’ YouTube channel on Monday.

The Main Event

Knicks/Celtics on TNT at 8p.


Cynopsis Digital Mobile Video Webinar is Today:
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Expert Speakers:
Cynopsis Media:
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Univision Communications: Charlie Echeverry ( EVP, Sales for Univision Interactive)

ON THIS DAY in 1981: The Islanders’ Mike Bossy scores his 50th goal from the first 50 games of the season.

Answer to Our Last Sports Trivia Question: The nickname Papa Bear refers to what former coach and executive? Answer: The Bears’ own George Halas. Kudos: Phyllis McQuillan-MSG Media/NY; Jon Latzer-CineSport/NY; John Carlo-NBCUniversal/NY; Ethan J. Tyer-CBS/NY; Chris Swan-HRTV/Medway; Tim McGhee-MSP Sports/Summit; Fred Petrosino-JBG/Jupiter; Matthew Seaman-Sea2sea Media/Knoxville; Chuck Gordon-WABM-TV/Birmingham; Lisa Fikeys-Zimmerman/Chicago; Pam Tierney-Actress/VoiceOver/ Chicago; John Ward-NBC Sports Group/Chicago; Ron’s Grandma/Pearly Gates; David Hauptman/Denver; Matt Sautter-OpenTV/Golden; Michael Jaquet-U.S. Ski and Snowboard Team/Park City; Jeff C. Fellenzer-University of Southern California/LA; Tamara Brcka-Fox Global Consumer Products/LA; Bill Phillips-Turner Broadcasting/Burbank; Brian Sullivan-KHQ-TV/Spokane.

In The Know: Who holds the record for most passing yards in a Super Bowl? ( Email 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.)

Later — Chris
Chris Pursell for Cynopsis | Sports

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