On the latest Sporticast episode, hosts Scott Soshnick and Eben Novy-Williams discuss some of the biggest sports business stories of the week, including the plans for an alternative NBA game broadcast featuring the Inside the NBA crew. That means Shaquille O’Neal, Charles Barkley and the rest of the Turner lineup will be doing their best ManningCast impression for a handful of games this season.
This is the latest in what is becoming a trend in sports media—networks and leagues are looking to build more custom options for fans who crave something different than the standard all-inclusive broadcast. The most successful example in the past 12 months has been Peyton and Eli Manning on Monday Night Football. Their broadcast, which featured interviews with NFL stars and other celebrities, was routinely drawing around 1.5 million viewers per night.
The hosts also discuss the Super Bowl audience, one of the largest in NFL history. The Rams’ 23-20 win over the Bengals drew more than 100 million viewers on TV and another 11.2 million via streaming platforms and connected devices. The numbers cap a resurgent year for the NFL from a broadcast standpoint.
Lastly, the hosts check in on Major League Baseball’s lockout. Pitchers and catchers were originally set to report to camp this week, but the owners and union appear to be far apart in their negotiations on a new CBA.