The NFL revealed its 18-week, 272-game regular-season schedule for the upcoming season, which kicks off on Sept. 8 in Los Angeles with the league’s annual primetime kickoff game, as the Rams host the Bills at 8:20p on NBC. The network and Peacock will then feature a slate of Sunday Night Football programming that will feature three appearances each by the Buccaneers, Chief, Cowboys and Packers. The new SNF announce team of Mike Tirico, Cris Collinsworth, and Melissa Stark will work its first game together at the Hall of Fame Game in primetime on Aug. 4. The company will also feature a trio of holiday matchups, including the first-ever Thanksgiving game in Minnesota, against the Patriots, while Christmas Day pits the Bucs/Cardinals, and New Year’s night offers the Rams/Chargers. Telemundo Deportes will again provide exclusive Spanish-language coverage of the entire NBC Sunday Night Football package with 20 regular season games, including 18 regular-season Sunday Night Football games, NFL Kickoff 2022, and the annual Thanksgiving night game.
FOX Sports, host of Super Bowl LVII on Feb. 12 in addition to its regular season sate, two Wild Card Playoff Games, two NFC Divisional Playoff Games, and the NFC Championship Game. The network begins its regular season coverage on Sept. 11 with a doubleheader featuring the Packers/Vikings in America’s Game Of The Week. The 18-week slate of games features nine appearances from the Rams, and eight appearances each from the Cowboys, Packers and Buccaneers. FOX NFL’s traditional Thanksgiving Day game pits the Giants/Cowboys at 4:30p, while Christmas Day serves up the Packers/Dolphins. FOX Deportes returns with Spanish-language coverage for select games including one preseason game, two regular season games on Thanksgiving and Christmas, two Wild Card Games, two NFC Divisional Games, the NFC Championship Game and Super Bowl LVII.
The NFL on CBS counters with a lineup that includes multiple appearances by Kansas City, Green Bay, Tampa Bay, Dallas and Cincinnati. Additionally, the NFL ON CBS will feature holiday games on Thanksgiving and Christmas as well as three postseason contests, including the AFC Championship. The season kicks off on Sept. 11 with a national doubleheader while Thanksgiving Day delivers Bills/Lions at 12:30p. Christmas Day sees CBS Sports and Nickelodeon will once again team up for the Broncos/Rams game at 4:30p.
On ESPN, the company delivers a record 23-game slate, including the new-look Monday Night Football with Joe Buck, Troy Aikman and Lisa Salters and the first exclusive game on ESPN+ in Week 8, as well as a Saturday doubleheader in Week 18 featuring matchups with playoff implications on ESPN and simulcast on ABC. In addition to its Week 2 and 18 games, ABC is set to simulcast ESPN’s Monday Night Football presentation in Weeks 1, 3, 15 and 17. Monday Night Football with Peyton and Eli will be back for 10 games in their second season.
Thursday Night Football will air exclusively on Prime Video, kicking off its slate in Week 2 as the Chiefs host the Chargers at 8:15p. Al Michaels and Emmy-winning football analyst Kirk Herbstreit will be in the TNF booth to call all the action this season. NFL Network will exclusively televise seven games (three international games, three games in Week 15 on Saturday, December 17 and the Raiders visiting the Steelers on Dec. 24.
Speaking of the NFL, Football Night in America has a new host with NBC Sports tapping the talents of Maria Taylor for the studio show each week during the NFL season. Taylor debuted on the program as a co-host in 2021. NBC Sports Executive Producer Sam Flood: “Maria is the perfect choice to carry the legacy forward of anchoring the most-watched studio show in sports.” In addition to her hosting roles, Taylor is executive producing and currently in production on an eight-part documentary series on the history of the Black quarterback in the NFL that will stream on Peacock.
NBCUniversal Telemundo Enterprises unveiled its 2022-2023 line up of scripted and unscripted programming as part of its upfront presentation, anchored this year by the addition of FIFA World Cup Qatar 2022. The company announced that fans can look to Telemundo and Peacock “for the most ambitious coverage of the FIFA World Cup in Spanish-language history including live coverage of the group stage, all knock-off stage matches, and the highly anticipated World Cup final.” In addition, Telemundo revealed plans for a slate of supporting soccer content exclusive to Peacock designed to appeal to soccer face while streaming plans include a 24/7 dedicated World Cup channel, featuring exclusive pre- and post-game coverage, a daily live debate show, play by play analysis of every goal of the day, and extended interviews and highlights. The network will have an onsite footprint with in-venue presence at all 64 games and dedicated commentary teams calling the games from within the stadium as well as a presentation studio in the center of the cultural Souq Wagif Marketplace and multiple positions throughout Doha supported by Telemundo Deportes’ lead commentary team.
ESPN is continuing its run of upticks for Stanley Cup Playoff coverage. Through 22 games, the first round on ESPN and ESPN2 are up 28% over the first round in 2021, averaging 651,000 viewers. Game 5 of the Penguins/Rangers averaged 1.05 million, up 61% over its comparable game in 21.
Speaking of which, ESPN and ESPN+ are giving golf fans multiple ways to experience the 104th edition of the PGA Championship the week of May 16-22, including a new alternate telecast during live play. Plans include more than 230 hours of live play across ESPN and ESPN+ during the four days of the championship, as well as exclusive Featured Groups and Featured Hole presentations plus the recently confirmed alternate telecast – PGA Championship with Joe Buck & Michael Collins – that will complement the event’s traditional television production. The new addition will run from 1-2p on ESPN and 2-5p on ESPN2 on the opening two days, before shifting to 9-10a on ESPN and 10a-1p on ESPN+ for the final two days. Scott Van Pelt will anchor live play coverage on ESPN and ESPN+, joined by David Duval. Hole announcers will be Curtis Strange, Bob Wischusen and Dave Flemming.
ESPN also announced that it had re-signed Ros Gold-Onwude to a multi-year extension. She has been serving as an analyst and sideline reporter for NBA and WNBA coverage in addition to hosting pregame and halftime for th 2022 NBA Finals on ESPN Radio.
The PBR World Finals will open up Friday night at Dickies Arena, marking the first time the sport’s championship is held in Fort Worth, Texas. Eight rounds of action will run May 13-15 and May 19-22. CBS Sports Network carries every long round of the PBR World Finals, while Sunday’s Championship Round will be live on CBS
Catching up in the world of documentaries, in conjunction with NBA’s 75th Anniversary, Sports Charles Barkley and his Round Mound Media have partnered with Turner Sports to premiere The Great Debate with Charles Barkley, a documentary film that “will reframe the classic debate about basketball’s greatest of all time by redefining the very concept of greatness.” Series premieres on May 18 ahead of TNT’s presentation of the 2022 NBA Western Conference Finals presented by AT&T 5G. The film will feature Barkley telling the stories of the players that “inspired him and explaining what a debate that covers 75 years of NBA history is truly about.”
Chris Pratt’s Indivisible Productions, Reserve Entertainment and Religion of Sports are aligning for a new documentary titled Helen | Believe. The documentary follows Helen Maroulis, women’s wrestling Olympic champion who sustained a devastating concussion during a match that led to a traumatic brain injury.
NBA TV debuts its latest doc – As We Rise: 25 Years of the WNBA presented by Nike – on Saturday at 7p, covering the evolution of the league, progress on and off the court, and the top moments which helped shape the WNBA on Saturday at 7p. The hour-long special – produced in association with Bleacher Report and HighlightHER – features more than 30 interviews.
The inaugural season of the Extreme E racing series has been captured in a new documentary that will release on Prime Video in the UK and Ireland this summer. ‘Race for the Planet’ is a five-part docu-series giving audiences a look at Extreme E’s 2021 season and the climate change story that underpinned it. The show has been executive produced by the sports production company NEO Studios.
The group behind the iconic Tour de France is setting its eyes on Las Vegas, announcing a new event in the city next year. L’Étape by Tour de France will run the vent from May 13-14, 2023, launching from the Las Vegas Ballpark and heading west into Red Rock Canyon.
The PGA TOUR, Western Golf Association and Castle Pines Golf Club officials announced that the 2024 BMW Championship will be played at Castle Pines Golf Club in Castle Rock, Colorado. While official dates have not been announced, the event is scheduled to return to the Denver area in August 2024.
In international news, Singapore: ONE Championship announced a multi-year partnership with ELEVEN Sports, making them the exclusive distributor of ONE Championship live events and programming in Italy.
The Premier League reached a new agreement with IMG that will see the two organizations continue to work together to operate Premier League Productions for the next three seasons. PLP produces and distributes all of the Premier League’s international content, including the broadcasting of all 380 Premier League matches.
SailGP revealed a slate of international broadcast offerings for Season 3 of the championship with the season launching at the Bermuda Sail Grand Prix presented by Hamilton Princess on May 14-15. The league reported a total broadcast audience (dedicated and secondary) increase of 220% to 823.4 million viewers in Season 2, with the dedicated broadcast audience of 39.2 million representing a 131% increase. New deals were facilitated by IMG.
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SPONSORSHIP & PROMOTION
With the Stanley Cup Playoffs underway, the NHL revealed that there are more than two dozen official partners in the United States and Canada activating for the 2022 Stanley Cup Playoffs. New partners include Chipotle, Clutch and TikTok and more than half of the NHL’s partners are activating during this year’s Playoffs. US partners debuting new NHL themed creative include GEICO, New Amsterdam Vodka, Great Clips, and Navy Federal Credit Union. Others brands on-board include Ticketmaster, Discover, MassMutual, Fastenal, Pepsi, Truly Hard Seltzer, Bud Light, and more.
The NBA unveiled a lineup of reimagined trophies for the NBA postseason, including an evolution of the Larry O’Brien Trophy, awarded annually to the NBA champions. Each of the six trophies, designed in collaboration with artist Victor Solomon and Tiffany & Co., are named after NBA legends.
Guaranteed Rate, a leader in mortgage lending and digital financial services, is teaming with CrossFit, to become the Official Mortgage Company of the 2022 NOBULL CrossFit Games. The NOBULL CrossFit Games kicked off in February with the NOBULL CrossFit Open, which featured nearly 300,000 people across more than 150 countries competing in their local gyms.
DIGITAL, DATA & TECH
Major League Baseball, MLB Players, Inc. and Sorare entered into a partnership to launch the first Major League Baseball NFT-based free-to-play game, which will be released this summer. “The connections we build with our fans are vital and Sorare understands the importance of that bond,” said Commissioner of Baseball Robert D. Manfred, Jr. “The company’s focus on transforming fandom through an innovative combination of sports, technology and gaming to let fans truly own a piece of the game they love is unique and goes beyond borders – allowing us to bring the love of baseball to more fans across the globe.”
SportsBubble Inc. – an internet-based technology company that offers provides software, marketing and services to simplify discovery and access to sports – announced its official launch. Founded by Lydia Murphy-Stephans, SportsBubble is releasing its first product, the WatchSports app, described as a live Sports & Esports Event Guide for the streaming era. WatchSports looks to simplify search by providing a guide with viewing options for all live events in one place.
Sportradar and the Australian Ice Hockey League locked in a data and AV distribution rights partnership. The agreement will allow Sportradar to acquire the worldwide data and audio-visual distribution rights, excluding Australia and New Zealand, through to the end of the 2024 season.
JuJu Smith-Schuster, Monique Billings, Jalen Suggs, Cameron Brink and Zaire Wade are among the athlete-creators to join direct-to-fan social network Momento NFT and mint exclusive NFTs on the app for their fans and other collectors. For this launch, Momento NFT partnered with OneTeam Partners, a licensing, marketing and multimedia company that specializes in commercializing the group rights of athletes.
Swedish based Sportway AB and Norwegian company MyGame Group AS agreed to merge in order to ramp up their international expansion plans and unite their rights portfolios. The new parent company in the merged unit, Sportway Media Group AB, will control exclusive sports rights in five countries across seven different sports. With AI-cameras installed in more than 500 arenas, and more than 3.000 new installations already in the pipeline, the company is aiming for a dominant role in the AI sports production and streaming business in Europe.
SportsHandle.com launched a “first-of-its-kind” tracker with more than 250 sports betting partnerships. Accessible under SportsHandle.com’s drop-down menu under “Tools,” the Sports Betting Partnership Tracker lists all agreements involving U.S. sportsbooks and sports entities. To date, 29 sportsbooks have entered into at least one partnership. “The sports betting landscape is constantly evolving, and we are proud to unveil this all-encompassing resource that provides the most up-to-date partnership and sponsorship information in one convenient location,” said Brett Smiley, Co-Founder and Editor-In-Chief at SportsHandle.com.
CAA Sports signed global esports and gaming organization T1 Entertainment & Sports as well as its star athlete ‘Faker’ (Lee Sang-hyeok), for exclusive sponsorship and endorsement representation. “CAA Sports has a long history of supporting and growing the careers of iconic athletes and brands. As T1 continues to break records and dominate across the industry as a global leader in esports, we are looking forward to joining forces with the greatest sales organization in the world,” said Joe Marsh, CEO, T1 Entertainment & Sports. “We look forward to continuing building upon our blue chip roster of partners and building a long-lasting partnership with CAA Sports.”
Meanwhile, Kris “FaZe Swagg” Lamberson, one of FaZe Clan’s leading content creators, signed with Klutch Sports Group and UTA. This mark’s Klutch Sports Group’s first foray into gaming, as FaZe Swagg is the first gamer ever to be represented by the agency. “FaZe Swagg is a leading esports athlete and content creator who is a trailblazer in the gaming industry,” said Klutch Sports Group Founder and CEO Rich Paul. “We are thrilled to be representing him with UTA.” FaZe Swagg will continue to be managed by FaZe Clan’s in-house management team led by Darren Yan and Vera Salamone.
Beyond the Summit revealed plans to team with Papa Johns to run a year-long campaign in the Super Smash Bros. community. Together with Papa Johns, BTS crafted a year-round campaign designed to connect the brand with the Super Smash Bros. community on a deeper level with activations that include building a pathway to pro for amateur Smash players, creating an in-depth episodic content series focused on local Smash communities, designing and running a full social media campaign, and more.
ESL Gaming shared the full roster of teams set to compete in the ESL Impact Season 1 Global Finals. Taking place at DreamHack Dallas, June 3-5, the competition marks the first global finals of the new women’s Counter-Strike: Global Offensive circuit, ESL Impact. The eight teams competing for the $150,000 prize pool are: Counter Logic Gaming Red, Please Send Help, FURIA Esports Female, Black Dragons Female, Nigma Galaxy Female, equipa, Quality Kermits and Mindfreak.
Full Squad Gaming, one of the fastest-growing digital media brands in gaming, revealed plans to tour the country with host and co-owner Jake Lucky to celebrate the culture of gaming. A 31-foot RV has been converted into the FSG Gaming Bus, and will drive across the country to interview streamers, explore esports facilities, meet icons, and more. Stops begin on May 16 in LA and will continue through Las Vegas, Austin, Dallas, Atlanta, Orlando and Miami.
INDUSTRY & ROSTER MOVES
Elevate Sports Ventures closed on an investment from Arctos Sports Partners, a private investment platform. By partnering with Arctos, both Elevate and Arctos will be able to better serve their partners with unmatched expertise in building and growing world class professional sports and entertainment organizations. “We are honored to welcome Arctos into our family of industry-leading equity partners,” said Al Guido, Chairman and CEO of Elevate Sports Ventures. “Arctos’ dedication to driving the global sports industry forward through investment, strategic approach and access to best-in-class insights, analytics and technology mirrors our own. It is a privilege to be so intrinsically connected to a firm that continues to make bold and pointed investments in the sports industry, with ambitions to advance the greater industry ecosystem.”
ESPN named longtime collegiate administrator Michael Thompson Jr. to the role of vice president, programming & acquisitions. In his new position, Thompson will serve as the point of contact for ESPN’s business with the Southeastern Conference, including responsibility for SEC Network’s programming strategy, content acquisitions, live event scheduling and P&L, as well as setting the long-term strategy for SEC Network and SEC Network+, and overseeing content and publication for SECSports.com.
U.S. Integrity announced that former Bloomberg engineer Ricky Wong joined the company’s executive team as Chief Technology Officer. “We are thrilled to welcome Ricky to our team as CTO. Ricky will play an integral role in new product deployment & assisting in our expansion globally. Ricky’s experience and core values align perfectly with U.S. Integrity’s mission to keep the integrity of sports as a top priority,” stated Matthew Holt, CEO of U.S. Integrity. “Ricky brings over 20 years of experience in the tech and product development industry. We have a vision of where our company will go from here and I am very confident that Ricky’s leadership and ability to execute will help us get there.”
The XFL named Kerry Gordon as Vice President, Health and Safety. Gordon will oversee all health and safety policies, procedures and protocols for the League, focusing on providing premium care and well-being for all XFL athletes, in addition to directing the XFL’s eight teams’ Athletic Training Departments.
Candy Digital announced that Kevin Chou, Founder and Managing Partner of SuperLayer, has been appointed to its Board of Directors. “Candy has an exceptional leadership team and I’m thrilled about the opportunity to help them scale the business and brand globally,” said Chou. “Candy has positioned itself as a pioneer in the sports digital collectibles landscape and I look forward to supporting its expansion into art, music, gaming and entertainment.”
Jeffrey Pollack, a sports business executive with more than 25 years of leadership experience, has been appointed the first Executive-in-Residence in the Global Sports Business master’s program at Rutgers University. Pollack will serve as a guest instructor and coach and guide students as they begin to navigate their career paths in the sports industry.
nVenue – a company innovating in predictive analytics and micro-betting technology built for sports betting businesses and sports media – saw Quinton Singleton join the company as their lead betting advisor.
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ON THIS DAY in
1982: The Chicago Cubs became the first major league baseball team to win 8,000 games.
IN THE KNOW
Which player has scored the most goals in MLS? (Email email@example.com with your answer and be sure to include your name, company and city).
Answer to Our Last Sports Trivia Question
Who holds the MLB record for most career Grand Slams? Answer: Alex Rodriguez. Kudos: John Ferlazzo/London; Michael Ritz-Lenox Advisors/NY; Denis Barry-CBS/NY; Marc Goldstein- Marc Goldstein Media Solutions/NY; Synda Kollman-Charter Marketing Group/Boca Raton; Louis Lewow-FITE/Atlanta; JT Ward-Spark Connect/Chicago; Andy Pittman-TAMU/College Station; Joe Lyons-ESPN/Dallas; David Westberg-SAG•AFTRA Credit Union/Burbank; Tom Moore-Kalt Productions/LA
EXECUTIVE DIRECTOR, AWARDS & TALENT RELATIONS
SANTA MONCIA CA
Leads the strategic development & execution of awards campaigns supporting STARZ Original Series & talent through all phases on an ongoing basis. Budgets, plans & executes a wide range of awards related tactics to maximize exposure & recognition for STARZ Originals Series and talent. 7+ yrs awards & talent relations exp, preferably in television. Full info HERE (5/26)
AD OPERATIONS MANAGER >>
FUSE MEDIA INC./GLENDALE, CA: Traffic direct sales and programmatic digital advertising campaigns in a timely manner to ensure client expectations are exceeded. Manage and analyze live direct sold and programmatic campaign effectiveness daily across content. Manage multiple advertiser and agency accounts, develop positive working relationships. 3+ yrs exp required. Full info HERE (5/26)
SALES DIRECTOR >>
HEARST MEDIA PRODUCTION GROUP/CHARLOTTE, NC: Proactively identify, research, and develop new opportunities for our family-friendly programming blocks on ABC, CBS, NBC, The CW, Telemundo, and other media and digital/social outlets. Support creation and present strategic, cross-media concepts to multiple stakeholder groups. 10 + years of relevant business development experience. Full info HERE (5/25)
MANAGER, 360 MARKETING PRODUCTION – A&E/HISTORY
NYC, HYBRID OR REMOTE
Lead production management across HISTORY and A&E on-air and off-air campaigns. Support creative on long-term campaign planning/tracking/oversight. Min of 5 yrs exp working on fast-paced team with demonstrated in-house television or agency production management experience. Expertise of design/video/graphics production from concept thru completion. Full info HERE (5/24)
AD SALES PLANNER, DIRECT RESPONSE
Maintain client relationships and process client requests. Negotiate client rates and provide weekly budget reports. Provide quarterly agency/account budget tracking reports and summaries. Analyze and report average unit rates on a weekly/monthly basis. Bachelor’s degree with a minimum of two years of relevant advertising/media experience required. Full info HERE (5/24)
SR. MANAGER, EVENTS
SANTA MONCIA CA
Budgets, plans and executes a wide range of events to maximize STARZ Originals programming initiatives and reinforce the STARZ brand strategy. Manages all aspects of Publicity Events in the following areas for both International and Domestic. 6 yrs event planning and PR related experience, preferably within the entertainment industry. Full info HERE (5/20)
DIRECTOR, GLOBAL RIGHTS, RIGHTS LICENSING
NYC or Remote
Oversee the Rights Licensing vertical for the Global Rights team. Will provide licensing guidance, oversee the renewals business & formulate licensing strategies. 12+ yrs req exp actively negotiating & acquiring rights of third party owned material for a television, media or music company with strong Intellectual Property & negotiation experience. Full info HERE
MANAGER, PHYSICAL PRODUCTION >>
AVALON Studio/ NYC or LA: Responsible for managing smaller internal Development or “one-off” shoots. Maintain relationships w/vendors, production staffs & crews. Communicate & distribute project-related information and deliverables to all internal departments. Knowledge of Network, Studio and Show level department structure needed as well as Union and Guild contracts. Full info HERE (5/17)
MANAGER, PARTNER MANAGEMENT AND STRATEGY
Focused on deal negotiation and execution of new media rights as well as operations and delivery of content. Lead ongoing distribution commitments, terms compliance and assist with traditional distribution renewals and new deals! Understand the market landscape and industry trends. Working with other brands and 4+ yrs of working exp. required. Full info HERE (5/16)
DIRECTOR, CONTENT STRATEGY AND PROGRAMMING, STREAMING TV >>
TRUSTED MEDIA BRANDS/CULVER CITY: The Jukin Media/TMB Streaming TV team is seeking an experienced Director of Content Strategy and Programming for our Growth Channels. This position will work with the SVP, Streaming TV to grow our FAST/CTV channel business by launching new O&O channels, building out our CTV app programming and supporting new Streaming TV opportunities. Full info HERE (5/16)
IMPLEMENTATION SPECIALIST >>
WIDEORBIT/REMOTE: WideOrbit is seeking an Implementation Specialist to educate and train clients on WO Network or WO Omni products. A strong preference for WideOrbit product experience and an understanding of Sales Planning/Pricing/Traffic in the international landscape in Canada. Willingness to travel required, and French fluency highly desired. Full info HERE (5/13)