SBD/7/Sports Media

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  • ESPN INTERNATIONAL SNAGS MLB DISTRIBUTION RIGHTS

         ESPN Int'l has acquired exclusive distribution rights to a
    supplemental package of MLB games for the remainder of '96 and
    '97.  In addition to rights to all ESPN domestic regular season
    games, ESPN Int'l has also acquired rights to divisional playoff
    games, the All-Star Game, All-Star Work Out Day, both LCS's and
    the World Series.  ESPN Int'l Senior VP & Managing Dir David
    Zucker:  "Our networks in Latin America, Asia and the Middle East
    will receive a full compliment of great games from a sport which
    is rapidly becoming one of the world's most popular" (ESPN
    Int'l).
    

    Print | Tags: ESPN, MLB, Media, Walt Disney
  • MEDIA NOTES

         Randall Cunningham is a "top candidate" to be a studio
    analyst on TNT's football broadcasts this year, according to TNT
    spokesperson Greg Hughes (PHILA. DAILY NEWS, 8/7)....AOL has
    acquired multiplayer on-line game service, InagiNation Network,
    from AT&T (WALL STREET JOURNAL, 8/7)....Lee Winfrey of the
    PHILADELPHIA INQUIRER reviews the new HBO comedy series,
    "Arli$$":  "If sitcoms were judged like gymnastics, ["Larry
    Sanders"] star Gary Shandling would grab the gold medal with a
    perfect score of 10 and ["Arli$$" star Robert] Wuhl would be a
    cinch for the silver at 9.9" (PHILADELPHIA INQUIRER, 8/7).
    Michael Hiestand notes the characters may "seem creative to the
    casual viewers, but stereotypical to sports devotees" (USA TODAY,
    8/7)....According to people close to the talks, Time Warner and
    Seagram's are "exploring ways" for Seagram to shed its 14.9%
    stake in Time Warner (WALL STREET JOURNAL, 8/7)....Sports
    Illustrated Presents' "College Football '96" hit newsstands
    Monday.  The magazine will only be sold at retail outlets and has
    15 regional covers (SI)....With two months to go before the debut
    of WBIS+ in New York, joint owners Dow Jones and ITT appear "at
    odds" over the channel's make-up.  According to one exec, "The
    basic problem there is that I don't believe there is a clear
    picture of what they are talking about except this extremely
    vague idea that they are going to be a news and sports channel"
    (BROADCASTING & CABLE, 8/5 issue).
    

    Print | Tags: ATT, HBO, Sports Illustrated, Media, TBS/TNT, Time Warner
  • RED SOX ANNOUNCE TWO-YEAR RENEWAL WITH BROADCAST PARTNER

         The Red Sox have agreed to terms on a two-year renewal deal
    with the BUCI Television Group and flagship station WABU-TV for
    broadcast rights to games during the '97 and '98 seasons.  WABU
    holds an option for '99.  Terms of the agreement were not
    disclosed.  This coming year, WABU-TV 68 Boston, Concord, NH's
    WNBU-TV and Cape Cod's WZBU-TV will join the Boston Red Sox
    Baseball Network to broadcast 75 regular-season and five spring
    training games (Red Sox).  This morning, the BOSTON GLOBE's Jim
    Greenidge reports WABU "put cash on the table" to secure the
    renewal.  Last year WABU supposedly guaranteed the Red Sox almost
    $9M.  But some have said WABU will lose $6-8M this season on its
    baseball telecasts and that the station is for sale.  WABU denies
    both.  WSBK-TV, which held or shared the Red Sox contract for 21
    seasons before this year, attempted to sign the Red Sox for three
    years minimum.  WLVI-TV was also "involved in the latest
    negotiations" (BOSTON GLOBE, 8/7).
    

    Print | Tags: Boston Red Sox, Media
  • SUNSHINE NETWORK TABS NEW CHANNEL FOR LIGHTNING GAMES

         The Sunshine Network, the Lightning's broadcast-rights
    holder, has named WTTA-TV to replace WTOG-TV as the team's
    flagship station this season, according to the TAMPA TRIBUNE.
    WTTA-TV will carry 15-20 of the minimum 50 games Sunshine agreed
    to broadcast when it signed with Lightning in June through the
    2001 season.  Carter Gaddis notes Sunshine GM Jim Liberatore said
    the games to be shown on WTTA-TV will be "determined in about a
    week."  Liberatore:   "With the increasing interest in the
    Lightning, we needed to find a station that allowed us to put a
    lot of games on."  He added that other stations, affiliates of
    UPN and WB,  could not guarantee air time for all games due to
    network commitments (TAMPA TRIBUNE, 8/7).
    

    Print | Tags: Palace Sports & Entertainment, Media, Tampa Bay Lightning, UPN
  • WEDNESDAY WEB SITES OF THE WEEK: GOTTA BE THE SHOES

         The latest in this summer's string of sports-related movies
    is MGM's "Kingpin," which aspires to do for bowling what
    "Caddyshack" did for golf.  The "Kingpin" Web site at
    http://www.mgmua.com/kingpin/main.html offers some background on
    the plot (you know the story -- Amish boy taken under wing by
    one-handed former phenom with revenge against evil rival as the
    ultimate goal), as well as the vision of the filmmakers.  Co-
    Director Peter Farrelly:  "After this movie, bowling will either
    be brought back or it will be banned entirely."  The site also
    has the schedule for the now-completed "Kingpin Across America"
    tour, which starred Calvert DeForest (a.k.a. Larry "Bud" Mellman)
    and sought to establish bowling as an Olympic sport.  The
    "Kingpin" site also features links to other bowling areas,
    including the PBA's official site at http://www.pba.org.
    Sponsored by Brunswick, with promises of a heightened role from
    the company, the site offers the latest info on the tour, chats
    with other bowlers, and a merchandise site offering a poster of
    the "Million Dollar Club" (THE DAILY).
    

    Print | Tags: Anheuser Busch, PBA, Media
  • X MARKS THE SPOT: SPONSORSHIPS SOLD OUT FOR WINTER X GAMES

         ESPN has announced it has sold out its gold sponsorship
    category for the inaugural Winter X Games slated to take place
    January 30 to February 2, 1997 at Snow Summit Mountain Resort in
    Big Bear Lake, CA.  Four of the summer gold sponsors have signed
    on the for the winter:  AT&T, Nike Mountain Dew and Taco Bell.
    They will be joined in the gold sponsor category by Volkswagen
    and Pringles (ESPN).  INSIDE MEDIA notes the sponsors will
    benefit from their sponsorship with "various on-site amenities
    and commercial elements across multiple ESPN properties,
    including ESPN, ESPN2, ESPN Radio and ESPNET SportsZone" (INSIDE
    MEDIA, 8/6 issue).
    

    Print | Tags: ATT, ESPN, Nike, PepsiCo, Media, Walt Disney
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