Wednesday, June 5th, 2013

Cynopsis: Sports
06.05.13

Good morning. It’s Wednesday, June 5, 2013, and this is your first early morning Sports briefing. 

The NFL is adding another billion to its coffers, announcing a multi-year extension with Verizon that expands the carrier’s sponsorship and content agreement with the league. Through the deal, Verizon will-starting with the 2014 season-expand NFL Mobile on Verizon to include access to CBS and FOX Sunday afternoon games in their home markets, as well as the current Thursday, Sunday and Monday Night Football game coverage along with NFL Network and NFL RedZone. Verizon customers will also gain access to all postseason games, including the Super Bowl. The deal is reportedly valued at $1 billion.

On the Air

CBS Sports Chairman Sean McManus named David Berson as President, CBS Sports, where he will be involved in all aspects of CBS Sports’ day-to-day management and will also continue to lead CBS Sports Network. “David’s contributions and expertise in all areas of our business, including programming, production and business affairs, have managed to exceed our high expectations since he joined CBS Sports,” said McManus. “This is a natural evolution for David to assume additional responsibilities at CBS Sports, working alongside me on the day-to-day management of both CBS Sports and CBS Sports Network.”

FOX Sports Media Group locked in a multi-media rights agreement with UEFA for all UEFA EURO 2016and 2018 FIFA World Cup European qualifying matches. FSMG has also agreed to sublicense half the game inventory to ESPN for carriage on its television and digital assets, with FOX Sports and ESPN each getting rights to over 270 matches total for both cycles. Qualifying matches for the UEFA EURO 2016 start in September 2014.

TNT’s coverage of the 2013 NBA Eastern Conference Finals Game 7 between the Heat and Pacers delivered a 7.1 household rating and 11.5 million total viewers, according to Nielsen Fast Nationals, which would rank as the third highest-rated and third most-viewed program in the history of the network. In addition, the game would rank as TNT’s highest-rated and most-viewed NBA telecast in the network’s 29-year history. Following Game 7, TNT’s Inside the NBA averaged a 3.3 household score based on metered market ratings to record its highest-rated and most-viewed show since 2011.

With the NBA Finals locked in, ESPN announced coverage plans for the series, which will tip off on ABC on Thursday at 9p. Mike Breen once again offers commentary with analyst Jeff Van Gundy. Doris Burke will provide sideline reports and former referee and ESPN NBA analyst Steve Javie will be courtside. Production highlights are set to include a new broadcast open celebrating the greatest players and moments from The Finals, coaches being wired for sound, I-MOVIX cameras for slow motion replays, 36 high-definition video cameras; SkyCam and eight Super Slo Mo cameras.

Around the dial, NBA Digital will offer more than 40 hours of live programming on NBA TV surrounding the Finals that will include highlights, news and info leading up to and following the action including live coverage of the post-game press conferences for each game. Matt Winer will host NBA TV’s on-site Finals coverage with analysts that include Greg Anthony, Rick Fox, Steve Smith and Chris Webber along with TNT studio analysts Charles Barkley, Shaquille O’Neal and Kenny Smith.

Through three days of games, the Conference Final round of the 2013 NHL Playoffs on NBC Sports Network is showing a spike of 94% in average viewership compared to the same days last year, according to Nielsen. Saturday’s Bruins/Penguins game scored a 2.0 household and drew 3.376 million viewers, making it the most-watched Conference Final game ever on NBC. The game was up 125% versus the Eastern Conference Final Game 1 a year ago. Meanwhile, the Kings/Blackhawks showdown delivered a 1.01 rating with 1.624 million viewers on NBC Sports Network, up 47% over Game 1 of the Western Conference Finals last year. Sunday’s Kings/Blackhawks Game 2 on NBCSN hit a 1.17 rating and 2.019 million viewers, up 142% year-to-year, while Monday’s Bruins/Penguins Game 2 rated a 1.46 household score with 2.601 million viewers, to mark the most-watched Conference Final game on cable since 2002.

Heading into the MLB Draft on Thursday, MLB Network reports that the channel had its most-watched week of the 2013 regular season last week and its second-most watched week ever in a regular season, with an average of 262,000 viewers in prime time, marking a 41% rise in viewership from the same week in 2012. Meanwhile, March through May 2013 marked MLB Network’s most-watched three-month period ever, with 206,000 average viewers per month in prime time. Meanwhile, MLB Network’s coverage of the 2013 MLB First-Year Player Draft begins this Thursday, June 6 at 6p.

Famed MMA icon Quinton “Rampage” Jackson, has signed a multi-year partnership with Bellator MMA, TNA Wrestling and Spike TV. The partnership will see Jackson competing in Bellator MMA, along with joining the superstars of TNA’s “Impact Wrestling,” which includes fellow Bellator fighter “King Mo” Lawal. Spike TV will also develop a special reality series featuring Rampage that will lead into his debut with Bellator, as well as other entertainment initiatives.

ESPN is adding a new college basketball tournament to the stage with The Wooden Legacy, which will begin play during the 2013 Thanksgiving holiday in Orange County. Representatives from ESPN Regional announced the event which merges the former John R. Wooden Classic with the Anaheim Classic. The tournament will features eight-teams across three-days and 12-games and air across ESPN networks.

Rogers Media has a new name for recent acquisition The Score, and will rename the channel Sportsnet 360, according to The Globe and Mail. The network will be positioned as a 24-hour news service for hardcore sports fans “who are just as interested in watching press conferences as they are in watching games.”

Save the date! The annual Cynopsis: Sports Business Summit is set to take place on Aug. 14 in NY, and will feature some of the biggest names driving sports today. In addition, we are holding our Women of Action cocktail event celebrating and discussing the impact women are having in the sports industry on Aug. 13.


A CYNOPSIS MESSAGE


Cynopsis: Digital BIG Monetization Summit
June 18 | NYC | Sponsored By: Yahoo!

A sampling of the powerful line-up of speakers:
Ezra Cooperstein, COO [Fullscreen]
Katrina Craigwell, Manager, Digital Marketing [GE]
Marc DeBevoise, EVP & GM, Entertainment, News & Sports [CBS Interactive]
Raymond Dooley, VP, Marketing [Sundance Channel]
Jill Griffin, SVP, Branded Content & Storytelling [LiquidThread USA]
Liz Jenkins, VP Corporate Development [Media Rights Capital]
Jim Louderback, CEO [Revision3, Discovery Digital Video Network]


Sponsorship & Promotion

In preparation of the NBA Finals, ESPN teamed with animator Richard Swarbrick of production firm Hotspur & Argyle to create a special animation that celebrates the best moments in NBA Finals history through art and music. The animation debuted yesterday across ESPN social media platforms with the video set to the band Mint Julep’s “Save Your Season.” The animation showcases NBA Finals highlights that span from Willis Reed and Jerry West in 1970 through LeBron James in 2012 with appearances by Tim Duncan, Kobe Bryant, Shaquille O’Neal, Magic Johnson, Michael Jordan and Julius Erving.

MLS Digital Properties announced that Tequila CAZADORES will become the exclusive sponsor of the “MLS Stream of the Week” on MedioTiempo.com, the largest sports website in Mexico and a publishing partner of Soccer United Marketing in the United States. The deal will see CAZADORES branding during the streaming of the Major League Soccer (MLS) game, a digital-specific halftime show with CAZADORES integration, custom co-branded ad units, editorial promotion and social promotion on MedioTiempo.com

The revived New York Cosmos have already locked in a jersey sponsorship, announcing a deal with Emirates Airline. The North American Soccer League team begins play this summer.

WWE is teaming with Kmart for an exclusive children’s apparel line called “Never Give Up by John Cena.’ The line will debut this fall in Kmart stores nationwide and feature shirts, hoodies, pants, shorts, outerwear, headwear and accessories inspired by the WWE Champion.

Digital & Production

NBA TV revealed that the Los Angeles Clippers (@LAClippers) are the recipient of the “Fan Nation” Award for their increase in social engagement with fans across social media during the 2012-13 NBA season. The “Fan Nation” Award is the only award that will be presented ahead of NBA TV’s telecast of the second annual NBA Social Media Awards presented by SAP that runs Wednesday, June 12 at 8p.

Roster Moves

IMG College named Alexander Chang as Vice President of National Sales for the company. Chang joins the organization after a 13-year run at American Express, and will now be charged with “attracting continued corporate interest to the college sports marketplace by providing opportunities to connect with 173 million college sports fans through deep relationships with leading universities and conferences coast to coast, providing a national/multi-regional footprint with hyper-local activation.”

The Main Event, the featured game of the day sponsored by Thuuz, real-time sports discovery for mobile & connected TV platforms

Penguins vs. BruinsWednesday 8:00pm ET. Thuuz rating: 88
Do the Pens play Fleury or Vokoun? Pens trail series two games to none. On NBCSN.


ON THIS DAY in 1977: The Los Angeles Dodgers retire Walt Alston’s #24.

In The Know: The Miami Dolphins retired #39 in honor of what player? (Email [email protected] with your answer and be sure to include your name, company, city and time zone. Unofficial rules: Only the second four correct answers from each time zone will be mentioned; and once you’ve been mentioned in any of the Cynopsis editions, you can’t be mentioned again that calendar week.)

Answer to Our Last Sports Trivia Question: The newly-retired Jason Kidd was selected second in the 1994 draft. Who was picked first? Answer: Glenn Robinson. Kudos: Leopold Myrie-OMD/Sydney; Phillip Park-CBS Sports Network/NY; Noah Coslov-CineSport/NY; Jordon Preston-BPN/NY; Brendan McGovern-Google/NY; Synda Kollman-Charter Marketing Group/Boca Raton; David Westberg-SAG-AFTRA Los Angeles local/LA; Tom Moore-Kalt Productions/LA; Willie Price-American Forces Network/Riverside.

Later — Chris
Chris Pursell for Cynopsis | Sports
06.05.13

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JOB OPENING: VP CORP COMM/AJ America/NY: Min. 8+ yrs. Exp. news ntwrk or cable TV pref’d. Resp: implement/mng co/ind ads prgrm, mng all publicity dvlpmnt, strategize on all comm matters/comm w/key execs for coverage for AJAM. Resume: www.aljazeera.com/america (6/7)

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