|A bright spot in the coronavirus-laden sports industry as the NFL announced that its players voted to approve a new collective bargaining agreement with the league’s owners, maintaining labor peace through at least 2030 while also opening the doors to a 17-game regular season as early as 2021. The vote to approve 1019-959, resulting in allowing the NFL to expand its regular season from 16 to 17 games as early as 2021 while also expanding the playoff field to 14 as soon as the 2020 season. The deal also includes higher minimum salaries, improvements to benefits for current and former players, expanded rosters and practice squads, and changes to the league’s drug and discipline policies.
“We are pleased that the players have voted to ratify the proposed new CBA, which will provide substantial benefits to all current and retired players, increase jobs, ensure continued progress on player safety, and give our fans more and better football,” said NFL Commissioner Roger Goodell in a statement.
Meanwhile, the coronavirus continued to wreak havoc on sports schedules, including that announcement on Friday that Augusta National postponed the Masters. “Unfortunately, the ever-increasing risks associated with the widespread coronavirus have led us to a decision that undoubtedly will be disappointing to many, although I am confident is appropriate under these unique circumstances,” Masters chairman Fred Ridley said in a statement. The Masters had been scheduled for April 9-12. The decision came after PGA TOUR Commissioner Jay Monahan cancelled four tournaments, starting with the final three rounds of THE PLAYERS Championship this past weekend.
Also pulling the plug for the tie being will be IndyCar, which announced that “After careful consideration, including regular communication with our event promoters, health officials, and the city administrations in our respective race markets regarding COVID-19, we have made the decision to cancel all NTT INDYCAR Series events through April. This begins with the Firestone Grand Prix of St. Petersburg which was to begin today and run through Sunday, March 15 and continues through the AutoNation INDYCAR Challenge at Circuit of the Americas in Austin, Texas which was to take place April 24-26. Although we are disappointed to delay the start to this INDYCAR season and will miss our incredible fans who support us each year in St. Petersburg, Birmingham, Long Beach, and Austin, the safety of our fans, participants, staff, partners, and media will always remain our top priority. We will continue to coordinate with public health experts and government officials as we determine the appropriate plans for resuming our schedule.”
Elsewhere in racing, Formula E and FIA will be halting for two-month period. “With the well-being of staff, spectators and the entire championship workforce being the number one priority, precautionary measures put in place will restrict races from running during a set timeframe,” the org said in a statement. “The series is implementing a flag system traditionally used in motorsport, to determine different phases and time windows where races could be rearranged or remain unaffected. Red representing no races, yellow keeping the opportunity open and green going ahead as planned. Months marked as red flags are March and April, with May currently categorized as a yellow flag and both June and July given the green flag, should the situation improve and stabilize.”
The Premier League, English Football League, Football Association and Women’s Super League decided that matches will not be played in the country until April. The Premier League said its aim is to reschedule displaced fixtures, including those played by academy teams, when it is safe to do so.
Cynopsis Note: The Esports Upfront has been moved to June 11 in NYC, while the Cynopsis Sports Media Awards will now take place on June 12. We will see you then. Stay healthy!
The newborn XFL opted to scrap its entire season as a result of the coronavirus. The league announced that all players will be paid their base pay and benefits for the 2020 regular season and that it was “committed to playing a full season in 2021 and future years.”
On the flip side, the UFC is hunting for new venue options for upcoming events. UFC president Dana White told SportsCenter that the promotion intends to move this weekend’s UFC Fight Night event from London to an undisclosed venue in the US. In addition, the promotion’s plan to host all foreseeable events inside its own Apex facility in Las Vegas is no longer feasible, after the Nevada State Athletic Commission on Saturday suspended all combat sports events in the state.
WWE is also still green for WrestleMania. In a statement Thursday, WWE said it would “remain committed” to hosting the annual event on April 5 at in Tampa, despite the coronavirus outbreak. “While we remain committed to hosting WrestleMania at Raymond James Stadium on Sunday, April 5, we are putting contingency plans in place in the event that it is cancelled by government officials, civil authorities and/or local venues,” the statement read. “The health and safety of our fans, performers and employees are our top priorities and we are monitoring the situation closely with our partners and government officials in Tampa Bay.”
Meanwhile, ONE Championship is moving to closed-door, audience-free events. All scheduled events with live audiences for ONE Championship will be suspended until at least May 29, 2020 due to the COVID-19 global situation. Global broadcast shows behind closed doors will commence in Singapore with an initial schedule of April 17, April 24, May 1, and May 8. Bout cards will be announced shortly, and additional dates will be added in the near future. The new world apex of martial arts events, ONE Infinity 1, is currently slated to take place on May 29, 2020 in Manila, Philippines, but is subject to change if the coronavirus situation deteriorates.
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|SPONSORSHIP & PROMOTION
Champion signed on to serve as the official on-court player apparel partner of Australia’s National Basketball League. Champion will design team jerseys from the 2020-21 NBL season, along with a range of club streetwear for fans per the three-year deal. Champion is also sponsor of the ‘Rookie of the Year’ award at the NBL’s 2020 MVP Awards.
DIGITAL, DATA & TECH
Wynn Las Vegas confirmed to ESPN that its sportsbook and poker room will be closed for an undetermined amount of time. The casino became the first Nevada casino to shut down its sportsbook. Meanwhile, state officials in Illinois on Friday ordered casinos to suspend gambling operations for 14 days beginning Monday. Illinois launched sports betting for the first time just four days before Friday’s announcement.
Overwatch League, which is shifting to online-only events as a result of the virus, saw VP Jon Spector reveal this week’s live schedule of matches with play resuming on Saturday and Sunday with two matches on both days. In addition, OWL will cut the Midseason Tournament and, shift All-Star voting until the off-season.
The Call of Duty League is canceling all live events for the remainder of the season “After careful review and working in close collaboration with our teams, we are shifting all currently scheduled 2020 Call of Duty League live events to online only competition,” the league said in a statement. “The new online only matches will be broadcast live to fans. Dates will be announced shortly, along with tune-in details.”
LCS commissioner Chris Greeley announced the suspension of the rest of the LCS season for the foreseeable future with play shifting online while the LCS spring finals would be moved from Texas to LCS studio.
CS:GO‘s ESL Pro League season 11 will also be played entirely online, with the league shifting into regional divisions to limit long-distance travel for teams. Competition will feature three European groups and one North American group
Beasley Esports named Nathan Bender and Ric ‘Weirdbeard’ Hogerheide as the hosts of CheckpointXP’s newest show, All of Esports. “What an opportunity, to be able to talk in depth news and stats for video gamers that live and breathe the lifestyle,” said Weirdbeard. “No need to talk about entry level stuff on this show. We are here to spare the fluff and give the news that matters to you from people who “get” it!”
Immortals Gaming Club announced a deal with Frontier Communications to serve as its official high-speed internet provider, with the deal also touching its Owl franchise, the Los Angeles Valiant.
INDUSTRY & ROSTER MOVES
Carlos Cordeiro, the president of the U.S. Soccer Federation, delivered his resignation on Thursday amid the fallout over an equal pay lawsuit filed by players on the U.S. Women’s National Soccer Team. “My one and only mission has always been to do what is best for our Federation, and it has become clear to me that what is best right now is a new direction,” Cordeiro wrote in a letter. “The arguments and language continued in this week’s legal filing caused great offense and pain, especially to our extraordinary Women’s National Team players who deserve better.” He will be replaced by the federation’s VP, Cindy Parlow Cone.
The NCAA announced plans to extend the eligibility of athletes on spring sports teams by one year in a move to make up for the cancelled season lost as a result of the coronavirus. Details of how the extra eligibility are still being worked out.
The National Television Academy of Arts and Sciences has opted to postpone the 41st Annual Sports Emmy Awards, scheduled for April 28, to a later date.
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|On This Day
1996: Mike Tyson TKOs Frank Bruno to win the heavyweight title.
In the Know
What was the name of Dwayne Johnson’s character on Ballers? (Email [email protected] with your answer and be sure to include your name, company and city).
Answer to Our Last Sports Trivia Question
Who was known as the Kansas Comet? Answer: Gale Sayers. Kudos: Mark Lehman-Braves/Atlanta; Christopher Kull-The Nielsen Company/Oldsmar; Mike McGough-William Hill/Summit; Mike May-R2 Innovative Technologies/Wellington; Synda Kollman-Charter Marketing Group/Boca Raton; John Ward-Gamut/Chicago; Joe Martin-JPMartin Group/Chicago; Jason Brist-Outdoor Sportsman Group/Chicago; Tom Doherty-Starcom USA/Chicago; Tom Perry-IEG/Chicago; Greg Molozik-GLM Media/Scottsdale; Rich Wolfe-Lone Wolfe Press/Scottsdale; Lorrie Shilling/El Segundo; Tom Moore-Kalt Productions/LA; David Westberg-SAG-AFTRA Credit Union/Burbank; Bob Ramsey/Palm Springs
|Sr PUBLICITY & COMMUNICATIONS MGR
Motivated PR exec for Sr mgr or above position to dvlp strategies & implement publicity/comm campaigns for content-creators/producers. 5-7 years minimum of publicity and communications exp. Full info HERE (3/24)
MANAGER, DIGITAL SALES OPERATIONS >>
NBCU/NYC: Lead a team of Campaign Specialists responsible for setup, trafficking and optimization of Ad sales campaigns across all NBCU News properties. Min 5 yrs ad ops exp. Knwldg industry tools incl DFP, Operative, Canoe and Freewheel. Full info HERE (3/26)
ANALYST SALES OPERATIONS >>
NBCU/NYC: Help identify, evaluate & dvlp to strengthen the division, expand revenue streams that align with NBCU’s long term convergence strategy between linear & digital operations teams. Min 2 yrs of professional exp in digital advertising. Full info HERE (3/26)
MANAGING DIRECTOR, DIGITAL >>
Spectrum Networks/NYC: Lead talented team of journalist ensuring our trusted news networks engage our audience. Manage digital teams in mult locations. 10+ years relevant newsroom management experience in a fast-paced, constantly evolving digital publishing envir. Full info HERE (3/25)
MANAGING DIRECTOR, DIGITAL MID-WEST >>
Spectrum Networks/Columbus OH: Lead the pioneering approach on delivering impactful and relevant content to the communities we serve. Manage digital teams in mult locations. 10+ years relevant newsroom management experience in a fast-paced, constantly evolving digital publishing envir. Full info HERE (3/25)
MGR, CHILDRENS TV >>
The Jim Henson Co/LA: Self-starter w/ability to work under tight deadlines in a fast-paced envir for Creative Affairs dept. Identify new projects & talent, oversee dvlpmnt of series to pitch & sell to the various ntwrks & studios. Min 2 yrs exp as a Coord in children’s TV w/exp in preschool arena. Full info HERE (3/25)
GRAPHIC OPERATIONS MANAGER >>
PAC-12/SF: Oversee the building, development and localization of studio-based Chyron package. Minimum of 7+ years in production and technical operations is necessary. Full info/apply HERE (3/21)
MGR, BRAND STRATEGY & COMMUNICATIONS >>
PEACOCK – NBCU/NYC: world-class strategist who will bring every aspect of our brand to life—from go-to-market planning, to IP, to audience development. 6 yrs brand planning/marketing strategy exp (TV/DTC) from the entertainment, advertising, or consumer products industry. Full info HERE (3/21)
VP PROGRAMMING >>
TLC/New York or Silver Spring MD: Critical thinker to drive audience growth for TLC’s content. Responsible for inventory planning, scheduling, budgeting, and cross-departmental communication. 10+ yrs relevant exp required. Apply Full info HERE (3/21)
MANAGER, CONTENT ACQUISITIONS DILIGENCE >>
ION TELEVISION/NYC: Resp for quantitative diligence & analytical support for content acquisitions. Transform data-driven insights into quantitative analysis, financial modeling and presentations. Mng Content Mkt Pipeline, incl exhibition & sales history. Full info HERE (3/20)
SPECIALIST – DIGITAL & SOCIAL MEDIA >>
TLC/Silver Spring MD or NYC: Create and publish the best digital & social content experiences for TLC and Discovery Life. Implement effective, innovative & influential social media strategies as the brand’s voice. 3+ yrs exp in social media marketing required. Full info/apply HERE (3/20)
MEDIA SALES PLANNER >>
Fuse Media/NYC: Experienced candidate to join dynamic team developing customized plans and presentations for Ad Sales clients. 2-4 yrs exp media sales co., or advertising agency pref’d w/strong knwldg media math. Exc problem solving & analytical skills. Full info HERE (3/19)
SOCIAL MEDIA INSIGHTS & ANALYTICS CONSULTANT (PT) >>
A+E Networks/NY: Part time candidate to provide insight to inform digital monetization team, guide strategy, provide feedback on performance, & identify key opportunities to build A+E’s presence across social platforms & maximize revenue. Full info HERE (3/19)
DIRECTOR, BUSINESS DEVELOPMENT STRATEGY >>
beIN Sports/Miami FL: Establish/maintain relationships w/ System level & Sr MSO staffs. Identify & direct mktg opps to ensure maximum revenue potential from accounts. Min 5-10 yrs exp in affiliate mktg or sales within ent/media, pref at a cable TV network w/est’d industry contacts. Full info HERE (3/19)
MANAGER, INVENTORY (TEMP) >>
Crown Media Family Networks/NYC: Mng process of monitoring and tracking all inventory through WideOrbit and Dealmaker reporting systems, while manually updating all ongoing daily changes. 2 or yrs exp in pricing and planning or advertising sales. Full info HERE (3/19)
SR DIRECTOR, INSIGHTS & POSITIONING OLYMPICS >>
NBCU/NYC: Drive research innovation, measurement opps & forward-thinking sales solutions for the Olympics. Must possess business & analytical acumen necessary to interpret and anticipate client needs & business implications. 10+ yrs exp rsrch, measurement or insights within sports ind. Full info HERE (3/19)
DIRECTOR, PROGRAMMING & PRODUCTION >>
WHYY TV12/Philadelphia PA: Oversee national & local TV programming on broadcast, cable/satellite, live linear streaming and digital video platforms. Key liaison between Content Prod, Communication & Member Relations, Development and Institutional Advancement. Full info HERE (3/19)
MGR, MEDIA RELATIONS >>
FX/LA: Mng daily implementation of public relations for assigned FX programs. Plan/implement press and PR-related objectives & programs, assisting with the strategic plan’g. 5 yr previous exp publicity at a network or agency pref’’d. Full info HERE (3/18)
SALES COORDINATOR >>
Dish Media/NY: Responsible for the daily account management and support to assigned Account Executives. Support 1-2 Account Executives and planners. Full info HERE (3/18)
MARKETING STRATEGY >>
MGR/Discovery/LA or NYC: Top creative to plan/execute campaigns on/off platforms to build awareness & drive engagement for the Discovery, Animal Planet & Science brands/shows. Analyze audience inside out to dvlp strong campaigns across on-air, cross and paid media 5+ yrs exp req’d. Full info HERE (3/18)
DIRECTOR, PAID MEDIA >>
STRATEGY/Discovery/NYC: Lead effort of all media strategy for a key group of networks, mktg counterparts & internal team to acquire consumers who will watch the Discovery networks on various devices while focusing on top level network analysis and more. 7+ yrs paid media plan’g exp req’d. Full info HERE (3/18)
ACCOUNT EXECUTIVE DR >>
Fuse Media/NYC: Responsible for maintaining/growing our Direct Response business while working closely with internal depts to optimize inventory and maximize revenue to achieve quarterly and annual goals. Full info HERE (3/18)
DESIGNER ANIMATOR >>
A+E/NYC: Highly skilled 2d/3d Motion Designer/Animator to support growing team within Prod Operations. Create compelling, fresh design ideas and typography solutions that will help brand our Networks and be highly adept at broadcast design, branding, on-air & off-air design conventions & post-prod process. Min 5 yrs exp in Broadcast Design with a refined eye for design and extensive knowledge of Adobe After Effects, Photoshop, Illustrator, Cinema 4D. APPLY HERE (3/18)
ASST MEDIA MANAGER (AMM) >>
Ad Council/NY: Seeking media strategist who is passionate about using their talent for social good work. The AMM is resp for assting day-to-day management of relats with pro-bono media agencies across all campaigns. Min 2 yrs exp in the media or adv. Must thrive on being organized/detail-oriented in a fast-paced and deadline-driven envir. Full info HERE (3/17)
MANAGER, AD SALES MKTG >>
Dish Media/NY: Looking for a smart, energetic and strategic thinker to drive awareness and rev for Dish and Sling in the advertising marketplace. Min 5 yrs in Advertising Sales or Marketing field with exp managing direct reports. Full info HERE (3/17)
SUMMER INTERN >>
Dish Media/NY: Is looking the next generation of leaders. Interns will have the opportunity to work in Advertising Sales/ Marketing, Data Analytics/ Market Research, Pricing & Inventory/ Finance. Full time from 6/8-7/31. Plus competitive pay. Full Info HERE (3/17)
VP, SALES DEVELOPMENT >>
ION Media/NY: Looking for a dynamic and exp. sales leader to oversee the development of overall sales strategies in breaking new categories and bringing in new business. Min 10 yrs. of Sales Management exp. with a demonstrated ability to bring in new revenue. Full info HERE EOE (3/17)
DIGITAL MRKTG MGR >>
NBC Universal/Phila, PA: Seeking a superstar to join our high-performance sls team. Ideal candidate must have digital mrktg knowledge, excellent people and communication skills, superior “bandwidth”, and is true team player. Min 5yrs exp with a deep understanding of digital video selling. Full info HERE (3/17)