12/01/21: Thanksgiving Day gave Major League Soccer its best viewership in almost two decades

 

Medias First Morning Read

 

Wednesday December 1, 2021

Thanksgiving sports might be perpetually linked to the NFL, but FOX Sports reports that its carriage of the MLS game between Portland and Colorado during the holiday scored as the most-watched MLS match on English-language TV since 2004. The contest averaged 1.85 million viewers for the post-season playoff to rank as well as the most-watched ever on FOX.

PROGRAMMING

In basketball, the Golden State Warriors victory over the Philadelphia 76ers on Thanksgiving Eve averaged 2,100,000 viewers, making it the most-watched NBA game on ESPN this season, according to Nielsen. The telecast peaked with 2,231,000 viewers at 12:30a with ESPN’s NBA game audience now up 24% over the 2020-21 full season average. In addition, ESPN’s NBA Countdown pregame show on Thanksgiving Eve averaged 779,000 viewers, making it the most-watched regular-season edition of NBA Countdown since January 3, 2020. Through 11 episodes, ESPN’s NBA Countdown is averaging 559,000 viewers, up 42 percent from the 2020-21 NBA season average.

As for the NFL, the league reports that its Thanksgiving Day games this year saw average TV+Digital viewership across the trio hit 29.7 million, servering as the highest Thanksgiving Day NFL average since 1998, and up 9% over 2020 as well as 8% over 2019. Overall, viewers watched a total of 17.1 billion minutes of live NFL games on Thanksgiving Day, the highest on record.

On the hockey front, after the NHL on TNT showcase of Penguins/Oilers tonight, TNT will present the first of a five-part “Road to the NHL Winter Classic” docuseries featuring exclusive, behind-the-scenes access to the St. Louis Blues and Minnesota Wild as they prepare for the outdoor game. Additional installments of the Road to the NHL Winter Classic series will air each week during the network’s NHL postgame coverage, leading up to the 2022 Discover NHL Winter Classic on TNT — New Year’s Day at 7p.

FOX Sports lined up programming plans for the inaugural Clash at the Coliseum on Feb. 6 to open the NASCAR season with a lineup of two days of televised on-track action culminating in the main event at 6p on FOX. This year the annual exhibition race will move to the West Coast for the first time and take place on a 0.25-mile track inside the historic venue. FOX will kick off its coverage at noon on Feb. 5, with a two-hour practice session televised on FS2. Single-car qualifying will then take place at 8p on FS1. All of that Sunday’s coverage will take place on FOX starting at 2p with NASCAR RaceDay.

Speaking of NASCAR, multiplatinum-selling entertainer Jake Owen will perform during the NASCAR Awards and Champion Celebration event on Thursday in downtown Nashville. Owen will open the show at the Music City Center with a live performance of his single, “Best Thing Since Backroads.” Fans can tune in to watch the 2021 NASCAR Awards when it airs on Saturday at 7p on NBCSN.

College football’s regular season across ABC and ESPN networks will conclude with seven conference championship games running Dec. 3-4, including the ACC, American, Big 12, MAC, Pac-12, Sun Belt and SWAC. Conference championship action kicks off Friday, Dec. 3, with the Pac-12 Championship Game from Allegiant Stadium in Las Vegas with an Oregon/Utah rematch at 8p on ABC and ESPN Radio. Championship Saturday features six games across ABC, ESPN and ESPN2, beginning with a pair of noon kickoffs through to the final whistle of the primetime matchup. At noon, Baylor/Oklahoma State face off in the Dr Pepper Big 12 Championship Game on ABC, while ESPN carries the Rocket Mortgage MAC Championship Game, featuring Kent State and Northern Illinois. At 3:30p the Sun Belt Conference Championship Game will commence with Appalachian State/Louisiana on ESPN, while 4p sees ABC offer the American Athletic Championship Game with Houston/Cincinnati. On ESPN2 at 4p, the SWAC Championship Game sees Prairie View A&M facing Jackson State. In primetime, the Subway ACC Championship Game closes out Championship Saturday with Pittsburgh/Wake Forest at 8p.

SiriusXM announced that David Feherty is joining SiriusXM to launch a new weekly show. The former tour pro-turned-broadcaster will team up with SiriusXM host and fellow former pro John Maginnes to host Feherty and Maginnes Monday evenings on the SiriusXM PGA TOUR Radio channel starting today at 5p. Feherty and Maginnes will launch in its regular weekly timeslot – every Monday at 7p on January 3.

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SPONSORSHIP & PROMOTION

 

Team Penske and Menards locked in an extension for the store chain to continue its partnership with the racing organization in 2022. Menards will sponsor both the No. 2 Ford Mustang that will be driven by Austin Cindric, as well as the No. 12 Ford Mustang raced by Ryan Blaney. In addition, Menards will also continue to support the No. 21 Wood Brothers Racing Ford, driven by Cup Series rookie Harrison Burton in 2022.

DIGITAL, DATA & TECH

Manchester City announced a new global partnership with Sony to develop new digital fan experiences within the metaverse. City will conduct a proof of concept with Sony, which will leverage Sony’s technologies and City’s global fanbase to develop new forms of digital content. The aim of this collaboration is to create a global online fan community where fans can interact with the Club and each other within an online ‘metaverse’ which will be a virtual recreation of the Etihad Stadium. Manchester City will be Sony’s first sports partner in this space.

Comcast will distribute ACC Network to its Xfinity customers, allowing fans and followers of the Atlantic Coast Conference to access the multiplatform network in the coming weeks. The availability of ACCN is part of Comcast and The Walt Disney Company’s content carriage agreement renewal. With the addition of Comcast, ACCN is now fully distributed with every major satellite, telco and digital provider across the country, and available to nearly 90 million households.

Meanwhile, MAVTV Motorsports Network announced its recent launch on SportsTribal TV. “We are thrilled to partner with SportsTribal TV to showcase our motorsports content on their European sport-centric television platform,” said Ed Niemi, Senior Vice President Content Distribution & Strategic Partnerships. “As MAVTV continues to expand, having partners like SportsTribal TV makes it easier to reach motorsports enthusiasts across the globe.”

ESPORTS

Complexity Gaming launched Complexity Stars, blending gaming, esports, professional athletes and celebrities who want to elevate their profiles within esports and gaming through tournaments, content creation, and collaborations with Complexity players and streamers. Complexity Stars will debut with a roster of star athletes from the NBA, WNBA, UFC, NFL, and MLB. The roster of athletes includes former NBA guard J.R. Smith; Olympic gold medalist and WNBA Dallas Wings shooting guard Allisha Gray; UFC fighters Sean O’Malley, Max Holloway, and Megan Anderson; Tampa Bay Buccaneers running back Leonard Fournette and Baltimore Ravens offensive tackle Ronnie Stanley; and Los Angeles Dodgers infielder Edwin Rios.

Riot Games canceled plans for this year’s League of Legends All-Star event as a result of on-going travel restrictions due to the pandemic. In a statement to fans, the company noted that quarantine requirements made hosting the event too challenging for players.

Aim Lab is expanding its partnership with the VALORANT Champions Tour to include Global Events, Latin America, and EMEA. Through the partnership, Aim Lab will release new products within its training tool specifically for VALORANT fans. With the deal, Aim Lab will release a suite of custom tasks based on the most epic plays of the 2021 VALORANT Champions Tour. Players from around the world will be able to test their skill within custom scenarios from the perspective of the pro players who pulled them off.

FaZe Clan announced the launch of their “Spotlight” campaign in partnership with McDonald’s USA, in a move to elevate diverse voices in gaming. The campaign, which launches December 8, will feature three livestream events hosted by FaZe Swagg and FaZe Jsmooth on their Twitch channels. During the events they will connect with “diverse, up-and-coming streamers – giving them advice on how to become a successful content creator and streamer, from sharing personal stories to giving them tips on how to cultivate their individual brands.” At the end of the streams, FaZe Swagg and FaZe JSmooth will gift the guest streamers with a collection of peripherals to help build out their set ups.

Eredivisie CV, DreamHack Sports Games and MECC Maastricht are teaming up to launch GG DreamHack Sports on June 4-5, 2022 at MECC Maastricht. The event will offer sports & gaming fans the chance to see “the best professional esporters compete against each other, and to translate their online gaming experience into a physical event packed with activities. “Sports gaming is becoming increasingly popular,” said Roger Lodewick, CEO of DreamHack Sports Games. “As DreamHack Sports Games is solely focusing on transforming traditional sports [IPs] into esports, creating and organizing an esports and gaming festival specifically designed at sport and sports gaming is a natural step for our company. We want to bring both the sporting world and the sports gaming world together, cross pollinating the massive fan base of the traditional sports with the agile and young demographic of sports gamers.”

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ON THIS DAY in
1984: Doug Flutie wins the Heisman.

IN THE KNOW
With which NFL team did Doug Flutie eventually make his on-field league debut? (Email cpursell@cynopsis.com with your answer and be sure to include your name, company and city).

Answer to Our Last Sports Trivia Question
In what sport were women first allowed to compete in the modern Olympics? Answer: There were actually five: tennis, sailing, croquet, equestrian and golf. Kudos: John Ferlazzo/London; Michael Ritz-Lenox Advisors/NY; Denis Barry-CBS/NY; Roger Furman-Sports Marketing Communications/Greentown; Louis Lewow-FITE/Atlanta; Synda Kollman-Charter Marketing Group/Boca Raton; Andy Pittman-TAMU/College Station; Greg Moloznik-GLM Media/Scottsdale; Tom Moore-Kalt Productions/LA; David Westberg-SAG•AFTRA Credit Union/Burbank; Larry Hutchings/San Luis Obispo

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Manage all aspects of consumer marketing and development; increase the visibility of its programs. Develop and refine messaging to connect our work with key audiences. Campaign leader for programs, events and initiatives. Manage, mentor and coach junior members. 10+ yrs exp in marketing/advertising position. Full info HERE (12/16)

SENIOR SALES PLANNER
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Create/revise upfront/scatter media plans, account stewardship & serve as agency liaison. Should be comfortable presenting and cultivating agency relationships. A min 5 yrs ad sales/agency exp. Strong written and verbal communication skills, strong media math skills. Proficient in Wide Orbit, MS Suite. Full info HERE (12/15)

JUNIOR SALES PLANNER >>
REELZ/NYC, NY:
Create upfront/scatter media plans, account stewardship & serve as agency liaison. Maintain agency accounts including upfront and scatter order entry, campaign changes, and product allocations. Assist Account Executives and work closely with the Director of Inventory Control. A min 2 yrs ad sales/agency exp. Proficient in Wide Orbit, MS Suite. Full info HERE (12/15)

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REELZ/NYC, NY:
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THE PALEY CENTER FOR MEDIA/NYC, NY:
Conduct research and generate weekly reports on media trends and remain highly informed of trends and developments. Research, evaluate, identify and develop the most relevant topics/issues and propose the most appropriate. Plan and curate Paley Public Programs and other special events. 8+ years progressively responsible leadership required. Full info HERE (12/15)

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ASSISTANT TEACHING PROFESSOR, TELEVISION AND MEDIA MANAGEMENT >>
DREXEL UNIVERSITY/PHILADELPHIA: Drexel University seeks applicants for an Assistant Teaching Professor in the Graduate Program in Television & Media Management. Expectations include inspiring teaching, current industry expertise, and acute attention to diversity, equity and inclusion as they relate to the future of the media landscape. Full info HERE (12/9)

MOTION VIDEO EDITOR
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Brainstorm brand IDs, show promos, brand promos and concepts, design style frames, build storyboards, composite and edit videos, animate titles, cut downs for social media and pitch reels. Being quick in providing multiple fresh layout/design within brand guidelines. Background in Graphic Design or Illustration is a very strong advantage. Full info HERE (12/8)

GRAPHIC DESIGNER
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Sourcing/creating assets quickly based on verbal & written direction. Designing & creating enticing graphics for various media. Participate in brainstorms, articulate your ideas in writing, translate that thinking into beautiful pitch decks, & deliver best-in-class brand creative. 2-5 yrs of agency experience as a graphic designer or art director. Full info HERE (12/8)

MARKETING MANAGER
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Manage all aspects of consumer advertising and marketing develop. Campaign leader on assigned projects and initiatives. Execute marketing programs to support specific marketing objectives across different channels and segments. 5-7 years of experience in PR, marketing, social media, advertising in a non-profit, agency or corporate setting. Full info HERE (12/8)

DIGITAL MARKETING STRATEGIST
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Expertise in editing website in WordPress quickly and efficiently. Ability to create compelling content creation for the website(s). Assist with digital advertising planning and provide assets and assist with coordination of website development. 5+ yrs of experience in digital marketing or communications in a non-profit, agency or corporate setting. Full info HERE (12/8)

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SENIOR EXECUTIVE RECRUITER >>
JAMES & CO/NYC, REMOTE:
Contribute actively to the start-up phase of each search. Gather relevant information regarding the appropriate industries and target companies. Identify potential prospects and sources and validate potential candidates through reference and source calls. Progressive business experience in executive search and undergraduate degree required. Full info HERE (12/7)

RESEARCH/KNOWLEDGE MANAGER >>
JAMES & CO/NYC, REMOTE:
Deliver high-impact executive search recruitment research. Manage research projects as needed by proactively identifying and mapping out global talent and organizational structures. Pro-actively utilize research tools to support search execution. Experience in Executive Search, with established success in in-house recruiting and/or Search Firm. Full info HERE (12/7)

PRODUCER, CREATIVE SERVICE
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NEXSTAR/PIX11/NYC:
Produce News promos, Cold Opens & digital content. Responsible for producing daily topical, tune-in, proof of performance & image on-air promotion spots & campaigns on tight deadlines. Expert at writing, producing and editing snappy, focused and original spots that provide viewers with a compelling reason to turn to PIX11 News over the competition. Full info HERE (12/6)

SENIOR ACCOUNT MANAGER – BRAND PARTNERSHIPS >>
WORLD OF WONDER/HYBRID/REMOTE: Creating and executing in-show integrations, Branded Content, Influencer Campaigns, and Experiential programs, managing all phases of the entire sales & marketing process from RFP ideation, to execution, and to campaign wrap reports. 3 to 5 years of Account Management or Marketing related business experience. Full info HERE (12/6)

TRAFFIC COORDINATOR
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TRIFECTA MEDIA/NYC: Build syndicated TV formats, liaise with outside agencies. Deadline & detail-based work, so accuracy and excellent communication skills are a must. 1-3 yrs experience preferred. Full info HERE (12/5)

SALES PLANNER >>
THE WEATHER GROUP/NYC:
Prepare and revise sales plans that maximize the use of inventory while fulfilling agency/client requirements. Manage and process all cancellation and expansion options. Maintain client schedules to ensure delivery of buy, build/schedule ADU packages as needed. 2-3 years of ad sales linear/digital experience. Full info HERE (12/5)

SALES ASSISTANT/ACCOUNT COORDINATOR >>
THE WEATHER GROUP/NYC:
Ensure that all details negotiated are fully executed post sale; ensure all deals are executed correctly and ensure all billing issues with advertisers are resolved. Work as a team to make sure all clients needs are met. Proficient in Microsoft Office Suite and solid presentation skills required. Full info HERE (12/5)

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