12/06/18: NBC extended its partnership with MX Sports for motorcross racing

Good morning. It’s Thursday December 6, 2018 and this is your first early morning Sports briefing.

NBC Sports Group tied up a multi-year extension of its exclusive partnership with MX Sports Pro Racing to continue as the television and digital home of the Lucas Oil Pro Motocross Championship. In addition, Lucas Oil returns as the series’ title sponsor. NBC Sports Group will present comprehensive coverage of every qualifier, Moto 1 and Moto 2 from every race across its platforms, with all main practice sessions, qualifiers, Moto 1s and Moto 2s shown live and commercial-free via NBC Sports Gold’s Pro Motocross Pass, totaling more than 60 hours of live coverage on the outlet. NBC Sports’ 2019 Lucas Oil Pro Motocross Championship coverage begins with the Hangtown Classic on Saturday, May 18.
“As the home of motorsports, we’re proud to continue our strong relationship with the Lucas Oil Pro Motocross Championship and MX Sports Pro Racing into the next decade, further establishing our presence in the motocross community,” said Rob Simmelkjaer, SVP, NBC Sports Ventures. “Fans know NBC Sports is the home for all things motocross, from our linear coverage on NBC and NBCSN, to our robust offering on our direct-to-consumer product, NBC Sports Gold.”

The XFL unveiled the eight cities and venues its teams will call home when the league launches the weekend of February 8-9, 2020. The announcement was made today by XFL Commissioner & CEO Oliver Luck, who named participating cities Dallas (playing at Globe Life Park), Houston (TDECU Stadium), LA (StubHub Center), New York (MetLife Stadium), St. Louis (The Dome at America’s Center), Seattle (CenturyLink Field), Tampa Bay (Raymond James Stadium), and Washington, DC (Audi Field). Each team will see 45-man active rosters and a 10-week regular season schedule, with a postseason consisting of two semifinal playoff games and a championship game.
BBC America is expanding its professional darts coverage, adding the 2018/2019 World Darts Championship from London’s sold-out Alexandra Palace from Dec. 13-Jan 1. The best matches of the week will air Sunday mornings from 9a-noon in addition to streaming a record 111 hours live on BBC America.com. The Final will air in primetime on BBC America on Jan. 1 at 9:30p following the Doctor Who New Year’s Day special.
The National Basketball Association is teaming up with digital entertainment company BroadbandTV to launch a new YouTube channel, titled NBA Playmakers. The platform will feature programming that blends digital celebrities and their fanbases with NBA players and teams with content creators attending league events such as All-Star, the NBA Draft and NBA Summer League and topics that include basketball culture, fitness, training, entertainment, fashion, gaming and more. Shows include Run That Back, Jump Starts and ON the Court, along with NBA Breakdown and Best of Sneakers.
ESPN cemented its plans and voices for the College Football Playoff Semifinals and the College Football Playoff National Championship. Chris Fowler and Kirk Herbstreit will call the CFP Semifinal at the Orange Bowl featuring Alabama/Oklahoma, marking the duo’s fifth semifinal together with Laura Rutledge and Maria Taylor as reporters. Sean McDonough makes his College Football Playoff debut for the CFP Semifinal at the Cotton Bowl Classic pitting Clemson/Notre Dame.
Meanwhile, college football’s All-Time All-America Team will be announced by ESPN in Jan. 2020. gthe year-long endeavor, which begins Jan. 2, 2019, is led by the CFB 150 organization. The All-Time All-America Team will feature 25 players: 11 on offense, 11 on defense, a kicker, punter, and return specialist. The team will be voted on by a select 150-member panel from across college football, made up of former coaches and players as well as media members, administrators, and additional key figures in and around the sport.
ESPN also showcases the historic comeback season of Tiger Woods in a prime time film debuting on ESPN on Dec. 30,, which is also Woods’ 43rd birthday. Tiger Woods: Return of the Roar airs at 9p.
NBC Sports presents nearly 40 hours of the inaugural Curling World Cup this week across NBCSN and Olympic Channel: Home of Team USA, along with digital platforms. Jason Knapp (play-by-play) and 2010 Olympic gold medalist Kevin Martin(analyst) will call the action from Ralston Arena in Omaha with NBCSN’s presentation beginning tonight at 8:30p. 
Jeffrey Katzenberg, founder of Quibi, and Meg Whitman, CEO of Quibi, announced a new docuseries by Whistle and called Benedict Men. The program will be executive produced by Stephen Curry’s Unanimous Media and will give viewers an inside look at “one of the most unique high school basketball teams in America at St. Benedict’s Prep in Newark, New Jersey.”  
Meanwhile, FloSports has a multiyear partnership with European Professional Club Rugby to provide live and on-demand coverage of EPCR matches exclusively in the Middle East and North Africa on FloRugby.com. The deal was agreed to in collaboration with RDA and see FloRugby add more than 70 live matches per season with this partnership, which includes the Heineken Challenge Cup and all knock-out matches of the European Rugby Challenge Cup through the 2021-22 season.
SiriusXM will broadcast live from the Baseball Winter Meetings starting Sunday, offering listeners nationwide the latest news and analysis on free agents, trades and other ‘Hot Stove’ topics from Major League Baseball. Two of SiriusXM’s exclusive sports talk channels – MLB Network Radio and Mad Dog Sports Radio – will broadcast live from the Mandalay Bay Resort and Casino in Las Vegas where club owners, front office executives, managers and others from the major and minor leagues will be gathered to discuss offseason baseball business.
JUST ANNOUNCED: 2019 Cynopsis Rising Star Honorees!
Cynopsis is excited to honor stand-out performers, innovators and emerging leaders in the media industry. The experience of these young superstars spans research, sports, digital, content and marketing – join us in congratulating them for jobs well done.
Honorees will be celebrated at the Cynopsis TV Awards, the ultimate gathering of media’s best & brightest, taking place this February in NYC!


The US Women’s National Team Players Association and opendorse, the athlete marketing platform, announced the launch of a partnership that will provide U.S. Women’s soccer players with “a solution to build their brands and collaborate with partners on social media.” The agreement makes opendorse the official social media activation partner of the USWNTPA and gives players – both active and retired –access to approve and share content to their Twitter, Facebook, and Instagram channels while allowing brand partners, including sponsors and licensees, to tap into players and their agents, and push approved posts through their personal social channels. While the partnership is new, more than twenty players and team alumni are currently active on the platform and have seen previous success alongside their partners.
The Players’ Tribune partnered with Kay Jewelers for a two-part video series, Long Live Love, featuring Pro Football Hall of Famers Kurt Warner and Brian Dawkins. Each episode sees the athletes and their respective wives discuss how love has shaped their professional careers and continued to grow stronger as years go by. Each episode will live on TPT and athlete social channels.
The NBA became the first channel to top the 20 billion view mark on GIPHY. The top GIF… James Harden’s dramatic exit, posted May 27, 2016.

The Players’ Tribune announced its acquisition of Unscriptd, the media and technology company for global athletes. The acquisition accelerates the global expansion of TPT, and will lead to the launch of a new mobile app for its growing athlete community. With the addition of the more than 2,500 athletes in Europe, Australia and Asia who work with Unscriptd, TPT’s community of athletes will grow to more than 5,000 from all around the world.
APM Sports, a division of APM Music, joined forces with PBR to expand the sport’s content and story-telling efforts with APM Music’s catalog. APM Music will be PBR’s exclusive music partner for all OTT, marketing and digital content, including the league’s new western sports digital network, RidePass.

In this week’s edition of Cynopsis Esports
  • MTN DEW AMP adds gaming Duties
  • Big East has big plans for League of Legends
  • ELEAGUE’s Rocket ride gets a boost
  • Guns of Boom plots another go-around
  • Epic Games Store offers a deal
  • Matchero gets an injection
  • We Are Nations inks deals w/ OpTic Gaming, Method, and Blast Pro Series
  • Game Awards prepares for liftoff

USA Gymnastics filed for Chapter 11 bankruptcy on Wednesday in the aftermath of the Larry Nassar sexual abuse scandal. The AP reports that the NGB for gymnastics hopes this latest move will allow for an expedited process in handling dozens of civil lawsuits related to the sexual abuse perpetrated by Nassar. Kathryn Carson, chair of the USA Gymnastics board of directors, said the move is a reorganization and not a liquidation.
The PGA of America made its move official, and will be leaving Florida for a $520 million development in Frisco. The move is not expected until the summer of 2022. As part of the agreement, the PGA Championship will be held at one of the two courses in the venue in 2027 and 2034.

Jaguars/Titans on FOX and NFL Network at 8p.
Uniting media’s most philanthropic teams 
The Cynopsis Social Good Awards
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Cynopsis is opening the call for entries for the fifth annual Cynopsis Social Good Awards, and we encourage you to show us your work as we learn from each other and look to forge new alliances. Enter before December 13th to save. Finalists will be announced in late February and winners will be announced at the fifth annual awards event taking place this August in NYC.
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ON THIS DAY in 1992: The 49ers’ Jerry Rice sets a new NFL-record by catching his 101st touchdown.
In the Know: Jerry Rice joined players such as Roger Craig, Earl Campbell, Tony Dorsett, Jim Kelly and Ed ‘Too Tall’ Jones in cameos for this college football themed comedy about the Fightin’ Armadillos. What is the name of the movie? (Email [email protected] with your answer and be sure to include your name, company and city.)
Answer to Our Last Sports Trivia Question: The Bruce Springsteen song “Secret Garden” served as a centerpiece for which sports-themed movie? Answer: Jerry Maguire. Kudos: Phyllis McQuillan-MSG Networks/NY; Joel Maxwell/NY; Eric Newman-ENEW Films/NY; Mike Bako-DS Simon Media/NY; Christian Matthews-Washington Redskins/DC; Terry Lyons-Digital Sports Desk/Boston; Sonia Durr-Carat/Atlanta; Kathi Gillin-Comcast Spotlight/Langhorne; John Kukla-KDFW/KDFI/Dallas; Paul Mugler-CBS Sports Network/Chicago; Lance Davis-ESPN Milwaukee/Milwaukee; Kevin Micklo-Pinnacle Advertising/Chicago; Tom Tyrer-Circle Change Media/LA; Tom Moore-Kalt Productions/LA; Jaymz Wooden-Bottelsen American Dart Lines/Santa Maria; David Westberg-SAG-AFTRA Federal Credit Union/Burbank
Later – Chris
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