Starting Monday, the Los Feliz native will host Daily Wager, a daily program on ESPNews airing at 3 p.m. and available for streaming on the ESPN app.Its the first regularly scheduled program from the Walt Disney Co.s sports media behemoth solely dedicated to gaming-related information and data on upcoming contests, and it likely wont be the last as legal sports betting spreads throughout the country.The Supreme Court ruling in May that legalized sports betting is expected to be a boost for sports talk shows, which are the low-cost moneymakers for outlets that need programming to supplement their live play-by-play telecasts.,Open discussion of odds, point spreads and other analytical data related to wagering on pro and college games each night could potentially energize the format for an audience that has a financial stake in the outcomes.The changes in the law open up an entirely new genre of entertainment, said Patrick Rishe, director of the sports business program at Washington University in St. Louis.Other sports networks are already on the bandwagon.,WarnerMedias digital sports website Bleacher Report announced last month that it is building a studio inside Caesars Palace in Las Vegas where it will produce gaming-related content.But as the countrys leading source of sports programming, ESPN, with its entry into gaming-themed shows, is marking the strongest indication yet of an attitudinal shift toward a once-verboten subject on which sports TV coverage has traditionally tread lightly.A daily ESPN show is an important milestone, said Lee Berke, president of the consulting firm LHB Sports, Entertainment Media.,ESPNs SportsCenter with Scott Van Pelt has a popular segment called Bad Beats, which humorously focuses on heartbreaking, last-minute plays that result in teams failing to cover the spread.Van Pelt sidekick Steve Coughlin will be one of the contributors to Daily Wager along with ESPN radio host Chris The Bear Fallica, ESPN.com gambling industry reporter David Purdum, Las Vegas-based handicapper Preston Johnson, fantasy football analyst Anita Marks and sports betting expert Joe Fortenbaugh.Rishe believes programs that provide usable data for bettors have the potential to draw younger viewers who have drifted away from traditional TV for sports news.,After graduating with a degree in economics from Brown University, he immersed himself in the analytics and data related to gaming and became an expert as a sports journalist in Las Vegas, where the home team is betting, he said.While wager-related data crunched by ESPNs statistic and information group will line the screen during Daily Wager, Kezirian said the programs content will still be accessible to the non-betting fan.Were still in Year 1 of legalization and I think there is a new audience that is open-minded to the space, so we want to be inclusive, he said.
After years of planning and construction, Disney announced Thursday that the new “Star Wars: Galaxy’s Edge” will open on May 31.,A rendering of Galaxy’s Edge.,(Illustration by Disney Parks/Lucasfilm via Getty Images)
“You’ll be able to live your own Star Wars story and take the controls of the most famous ship in the galaxy aboard Millennium Falcon: Smugglers Run, sample amazing galactic food and beverages, explore an intriguing collection of merchant shops and more,” the company said in a news release.,RELATED: Drone Gives Sneak Peek At ‘Star Wars Land’
Sinclair Broadcast Group said Tuesday it expects to generate signficant cash — up to $50 million annually — from the Chicago Cubs regional sports network it will launch in 2020.,Chris Ripley, Sinclair’s president and chief executive officer, said the Maryland-based broadcaster is looking at the Cubs TV network, announced earlier this month, as a boon to the bottom line and a model to partner with other teams.,The Marquee Sports Network, as it will be called, will become the exclusive TV home of the Cubs, ending 70 years of local over-the-air broadcasts and moving all of the games to cable and satellite.,The current Cubs local TV schedule is split between WGN-Ch.9, WLS-Ch.7 and NBC Sports Chicago, the regional sports network formed in 2004.,The Cubs represent Sinclair's first foray in a regional sports network.
The Chicago Cubs are teaming with Sinclair Broadcast Group to launch a regional sports network in February 2020 that will become the exclusive television home of the Cubs.,It marks the end of more than 70 years of over-the-air broadcasts for the Cubs, and the beginning of an ambitious endeavor to sell cable and satellite providers on the value of the carrying the new regional network — no sure thing in an increasingly fragmented world of cable TV.,But if all goes according to plan and cable providers from Southwest Michigan to Iowa — Major League Baseball’s designated home broadcast turf for the team — agree to carry the new network, viewers will have no choice but to watch local Cubs games on pay TV.,Having their own channel will enable the Cubs to have all of their programming in one place, versus splitting the games between two broadcast stations — WGN-Ch.9 and WLS-Ch.7 — and sharing coverage with the Bulls, Blackhawks and White Sox on NBC Sports Chicago, formerly Comcast SportsNet, the regional sports network formed in 2004.,But in the five years since the Cubs planted the seed of the regional sports network, the pay-TV landscape has changed dramatically, with cord cutting and skinny bundles squeezing the carriage fees cable companies are willing to pay for even sports, long the most valuable programming commodity.
Billionaire media mogul John Malone is cobbling together a team to bid for the Fox-owned regional sports networks being sold by Disney — and his roster will be going head-to-head against Major League Baseball, The Post has learned.,Malone’s Liberty Media, which in addition to big stakes in cable giant Charter and Sirius XM owns the Atlanta Braves — is matching the Braves with owners of the NBA’s Detroit Pistons and the Minnesota Twins, sources said.,The Liberty mogul’s strategy, according to sources, includes a promise to team owners that he will continue to sell games to local broadcasters, where cable television is chiefly how fans follow their favorite teams.,“It’s almost like [Malone is] enlisting owners of certain teams whose games are televised by Fox RSNs,” a close follower of the auction said.,Liberty’s 23 percent stake in Charter — the country’s second-largest cable operator — could make Malone’s bid synergistic as well.
The Punisher’s second season begins with Frank Castle (Jon Bernthal) grabbing a beer at a dive bar in some nondescript Michigan town.,In the first three episodes of its second season, The Punisher delivers some of the best television the soon-to-be-discontinued Marvel-Netflix enterprise has made in years.,Granted, the Punisher was always going to be a tricky character to adapt to the screen: The show’s first season was delayed in 2017 after the mass shooting in Las Vegas that killed 59 people.,Even so, The Punisher deserves credit for its initial conceit: The violence was there, but it was expressed through the lens of Frank, Billy, and other characters’ service in the military and the displacement they all felt returning home without any resources to start their postwar lives.,So while The Punisher offered some good through two seasons—namely, impressive fight scenes, an empathetic approach to veterans, and a nuanced lead performance by Bernthal—its presumed cancellation on Netflix isn’t just strategic cost-cutting by a company that knows it can’t compete with Disney’s impending Marvel roster.
Seminole officials announced this week that the county last year saw revenues from its hotel bed tax jump by nearly 10 percent — to $5.8 million — from 2017.,The facility, off East Lake Mary Boulevard, hosted 64 tournaments last year that brought in about 146,000 visitors — including athletes, coaches and spectators — and generated 17,000 hotel room night stays and $21 million for the local economy, according to county data.,This weekend, for example, more than 5,000 visitors from out of state are expected to come into Seminole for the National Field Hockey Coaches Association tournament at the county’s sports complex.,Before the sports complex was built, most people staying at Seminole’s major hotels along the International Parkway and Lake Mary areas were business travelers, county officials said.,Mary Sue Weinaug, owner of Wekiva Island, estimates that more than half the people that visit her attraction in west Seminole County come from outside the area and are looking to explore a different side of Florida than the theme parks.
NEW YORK (AP) — In a story Jan. 16 about Sinclair Broadcast's new streaming service, The Associated Press reported erroneously on the company's ownership of national television networks and channels.,A corrected version of the story is below:
Sinclair Broadcast, the nation's largest owner of television stations, is launching a free, ad-supported streaming service.,The nation's largest owner of television stations launched a free, ad-supported streaming service Wednesday drawing on local news, sports and other programs from the 191 TV stations it owns in 89 U.S. markets.,Sinclair was admonished by media watchdogs in April after the sports news service Deadspin pieced together clips of dozens of TV anchors for Sinclair reading from the same script.,The Stirr service will also carry an online tennis channel called The T, along with networks it doesn't own, including Cheddar business news, NASA TV and the World Poker Tour.
The new-look Fox Corp. on Friday announced that it will not bid for the 22 regional sports networks the Walt Disney Co. is selling off in accordance with the terms of the two media giants' $71.3 billion asset transfer.,Given its stated emphasis on sports, live events and news, the so-called "New Fox" that will emerge after the Disney deal goes through was thought to be the most likely contender to buy back the RSNs.,While YES Network is the crown jewel of the bunch—the Yankees/Brooklyn Nets outlet has been the most-watched RSN in the country for 14 of the last 16 years—the Cleveland Cavaliers put up huge numbers on Fox Sports Ohio, while the MLB's Royals are no slouch on Fox Sports Kansas City.,Sinclair is now seen as the last viable bidder for the entire RSN portfolio; meanwhile, Amazon and the New York Yankees are teaming up in an apparent venture to take YES Network off Disney's hands.,Many RSNs now trail only ESPN as the most costly line-item expense on subscribers' monthly cable bills; per SNL Kagan estimates, three of the Fox RSNs—YES Network ($6.74), Fox Sports Detroit ($6.69), Fox Sports Arizona ($5.48)—command among the priciest affiliate fees on the menu.