03/03/16: ESPN eyes UEFA marathon; Nickelodeon makes a sports run; adidas debuts World Cup of Hockey lineup



CYNOPSISSPORTS
03.03.16

Good morning. It’s Thursday March 3, 2016, and this is your first early morning Sports briefing. 

The UEFA European Football Championship 2016 will see ESPN serve up more than 230 live hours of coverage starting June 10 and running through July 10 across 10 cities in France. The flagship network is on deck to offer 40 matches, including the opening and title contests, while ESPN2 delivers 11. Meanwhile, ESPN Deportes will showcase 45 live matches with six tape-delayed. Meanwhile, ESPN3 Surround will carry four different UEFA EURO 2016 streams for each match  the Spider Cam feed, the Spider Cam triple-box feed, the Tactical Cam feed, and the Tactical Cam triple-box feed. All ESPN match telecasts will include pregame, halftime and postgame studio segments.

ON THE AIR

Nickelodeon continues to go deeper into sports in a showcase for advertisers yesterday, announcing that the channel will add new series featuring the likes of Cam Newton and Rob Gronkowski to its lineup. Panthers QB Newton is set to host All In, where he will escort kids on journeys to fulfill wishes, while the Patriots’ Gronkowski will star in Crashletes, a new viral sports clip show. In addition, the channel will also offer Jagger Eaton’s Mega Life, following the 15-year-old skateboard star around the world.

Tennis Channel is officially under the Sinclair banner, with Sinclair Broadcast Group stating that it had closed on its $350 million deal to scoop up the network. The acquisition was funded through cash on hand and a draw on the Company’s revolving line of credit. The company will now look to continue expanding the network’s reach through retransmission-consent negotiations around the country. Tennis Channel Chairman and CEO Ken Solomon now becomes president of the network.

OT continues to spell “smash” for Warriors games. NBA TV’s coverage of the teams overtime win over the Hawks averaged 684,000 total viewers on Monday to rank as the network’s third most-viewed game of the season. In addition, NBA TV Fan Night telecast ranked as the top live game sporting event of the night among Men 18-34.

Expect a new twist to MLS coverage this season, as ESPN, Fox and Univision will all feature coaches wired up with microphones for certain games for the first time in league history. The element will debut in the channels’ three national games on Sunday, Portlant/Columbus on ESPN at 4:30p, Seattle/Kansas City at 7p on FS1 and LA/DC on Unimas and Univision Deportes at 10p, according to Philly.com.

Just head of UFC 196, Conor McGregor will visit TBS’s Conan tonight before his fight against Nate Diaz on March 5. In addition to his interview, McGregor will also battle Conan O’Brien during an all-new "Clueless Gamer" segment on Thursday, where they will square off playing EA Sports’ UFC 2.

ESPN will bring back Jon Gruden’s QB Camp series ahead of the NFL Draft. The seventh year of the slate will see, over the next five weeks, Gruden spend time with seven quarterbacks at ESPN’s Wide World of Sports Complex in Orlando. Excerpts of the visits will be featured the same day on SportsCenter, NFL Live and other shows and showcase the likes of Jared Goff and Carson Wentz as well as Connor Cook, Christian Hackenberg, Cardale Jones, Paxton Lynch and Dak Prescott.

David Feherty will showcase heavyweights when Feherty returns for season six on Golf Channel on March 7 at 9p. This season’s lineup will include Jordan Spieth for a two-part episode on March 7 & 14; former United States President George W. Bush  on March 21; and Jason Day on March 28. New elements of the show this season will feature a sequence of “stand-ups” interwoven throughout each episode, with Feherty delivering anecdotal context on each of his guests in front of a live audience at Universal Orlando’s NBC Sports Grill & Brew restaurant. The series will also include a new show open and new graphics package.

Save the dates! Cynopsis Sports will hold its Sports Business Summit and Hall of Fame on June 22 while our eSports and Gaming Summit will take place on June 23 in NY.

Integrated Sports Media snatched up rights to the upcoming heavyweight battle between Tomasz "Goral" Adamek/Eric "Drummer Boy" Molina on April 2. The PPV showcase takes place at 2p with US residents able to see the fight via iN Demand, DIRECTV, DISH Network, and Vubiquity.

Speaking of boxing, SHOWTIME Sports unveiled its third installment of a year-long salute commemorating 30 years of SHOWTIME Championship Boxing with a “Legends” theme, highlighted by Sugar Ray Leonard, Marvelous Marvin Hagler, Felix Trinidad, Ricardo “Finito” Lopez and George Foreman. Seven of their top battles are available now on the network’s on demand platforms and will air will air on “Throwback Thursdays” in March at 10p on SHOWTIME Extreme.
 


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SPONSORSHIP & PROMOTION

The NHL, NHLPA and adidas revealed World Cup of Hockey 2016 uniforms for the eight teams playing in the tournament, which will be available for purchase beginning in August. According to the release, the uniforms are made with adidas’ adizero technology while blending three lightweight fabrics, and “reduces weight, adds flexibility and improves overall movement, allowing players to perform at their highest levels.” “We took iconic emblems from each of the participating teams to create jerseys that honor the traditions of each nation and fused those with an emphasis on technical design for elite performance on the ice,” said Keith Leach, Sr. Director NHL, the adidas Group. “adidas is committed to designing and developing high-performance products that make athletes better and we look forward to outfitting the World Cup of Hockey in our newest and most innovative uniforms.”

Bridgestone Americas, a Worldwide Olympic Partner, is turning to Olympic track & field staple Michael Johnson to conduct a new internal training and sales incentive program in a move to inspire Bridgestone Retail Operations employees in the countdown to the Rio 2016 Olympic Games through appearances, educational videos and other training tools. As part of the program, Johnson will be featured in an Olympic-themed sales incentive program, a mobile training tour, and a trip to the USOC Training Center in Colorado Springs for BSRO top performers. Later this year, Bridgestone will offer a broader consumer-facing retail marketing campaign complete with in-store, mobile activations and promotions.
 
The Mid-American Conference locked in a multi-year agreement with VisitMyrtleBeach.com to serve as the presenting partner of the annual MAC Basketball Tournament at Cleveland’s Quicken Loans Arena in a multi-year deal. This year’s tournament is scheduled for March 9-12. The partnership will provide VisitMyrtleBeach.com with exposure and visibility throughout the MAC Basketball Tournament and across MAC broadcast partners.  In addition, the Tournament will feature a 20-ton sand sculpture that will greet fans as they enter each game at Quicken Loans Arena. 

First Hendrick Motorsports, now NASCAR. Bosch Automotive Aftermarket North America locked in a multi-year extension to its NASCAR partnership. “Through our expanded partnership, NASCAR will benefit from the technical expertise and high quality parts that Bosch delivers,” said Steve Phelps, NASCAR executive vice president and chief marketing officer. “NASCAR continues to be an effective demonstration platform for our partners and our fans have proven to support the brands that help drive competition on the track.”
 

DIGITAL & STREAMING

PlayStation Vue added ESPN to its lineup, where joins fellow Disney outlets that include ABC, and Disney Channel on the platform. The deal marks the first time Disney and ESPN networks are offered over the internet in a multi-channel pay TV service with multiple streams and cloud DVR. Available channels will include ESPN, ESPN2, ESPNU, ESPNEWS and SEC Network. In addition, prices for PlayStation Vue’s multi-channel plans dropped by $10 for new and existing customers, with plans starting at just $39.99.

Kenny Smith launched his new show on PodcastOne, as the NBA on TNT host talked basketball and entertainment with special guests, The first episode features a Houston Rockets Championship reunion with Hakeem Olajuwon, Robert Horry, Clyde Drexler and Sam Cassell coming together to reminisce and talk the sport today. Charles Barkley and Reggie Miller also join the show. New episodes will be available every Wednesday at PodcastOne.com, the PodcastOne app and iTunes.

FANTASY/GAMING/ESPORTS

The doors are open for Yahoo Esports, which launched as part of the company’s Sports Media group. The site will serve as a “comprehensive guide, featuring the reporting and blogging, video commentary, match pages, team rosters, stats, related schedules and scores, that you have come to expect from Yahoo.” At launch, Yahoo Esports will dedicate its coverage around League of Legends, Dota 2, Counter-Strike: Global Offensive, Heroes of the Storm, and Street Fighter V with additional titles being added over time. On the talent front, Andrea Rene will host experts Travis Gafford and Taylor Cocke in weekly League of Legends coverage and break down Heroes of the Storm and Counter-Strike: Global Offensive with Dylan Walker.

Twitch is teaming with Psyonix for a partnership that will launch a Rocket League Championship Series, serving as the official competitive league for the sports-action title. In addition to being the exclusive broadcasting platform for the league, Twitch will manage RLCS operations and work alongside Psyonix to build the community and infrastructure to foster long-term growth of this critically-acclaimed game. “The Twitch community has collectively rallied around Rocket League to help it achieve organic success on our platform,” said Nick Allen, Director of Esports Operations, Twitch. “By working with Psyonix to build an official professional league around this grassroots phenomenon, Rocket League’s legions of players and fans can potentially turn their passion into a career.”

THE MAIN EVENT

Thunder/Warriors on TNT at 10:30p.


A CYNOPSIS MESSAGE


IT’S TIME TO CELEBRATE!

Join CYNOPSIS and your peers on THURSDAY, APRIL 7 in New York City at our 2nd Annual SOCIAL GOOD AWARDS BREAKFAST as we honor everything from sustainability partnerships and PSA’s, to diversity campaigns, environmental initiatives, and more. Last year’s event sold out, so book your company’s table today!



ON THIS DAY in 1984: Peter Ueberroth is elected the Commissioner of Baseball.

In The Know: (Email [email protected] with your answer and be sure to include your name, company and city.)

Answer to Our Last Sports Trivia Question: Which current member of the Sun Belt has made the most appearances in the NCAA Men’s Basketball Tournament? Answer: South Alabama. Kudos: Zilch! That’s a first.

Later — Chris
Chris Pursell for Cynopsis | Sports @VegasandVine
03.03.16

Roberta Caploe: Associate Publisher @robertacaploe
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JOB OPENING: MGR CONTENT & PARTNERSHIPS NEWCAST/ZenithOptimedia/NYC: Seeks exp’d, bi-lingual (Spanish & Engl.) mgr to dvlp & execute multicultural cross-platform content solutions for key accounts. 3-5 yrs integrated mktg/branded content exp. Apply HERE (3/10)

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JOB OPENING: PROJECT COORDINATOR/TV LAND/NYC: Mng prod of print, digital, promo premiums projects. Gather assets and a liaison between internal Mktg, Press, and Creative teams. 2-3 yrs of media/advertising exp. Email: [email protected] (3/4)

CASTING CALL: Companies can showcase their casting notices/casting calls here. For information on rates and specs for posting a casting notice, please email Trish at [email protected]

EXPERT SERVICES ADS: These ads are for companies or people who offer an expertise in the field of media by way of production, voice over artistry, writing, set development, etc. For information on rates and specs for posting an Expertise Service ad email Trish at [email protected]

INTERNSHIPS – These positions are for credit only – nobody gets paid here. These ads are always posted for free, and students work for school credit only. For more information on the specs for posting an Internship ad, email Trish at [email protected].

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