Manchester United Lands Richest Kit Deal Ever Lions Owner William Clay Ford Passes Away Sights & Sounds From SXSW FiveThrityEight Website To Launch March 17 ESPN To Air Series On U.S.' Prep For World Cup Cowboys Mount Huge AT&T Letters On Stadium Concussion-In-Sports Doc Makes U.S. Debut Stars Attend UNC-Duke Game Briefs Ganassi Salutes Target For 25-Year Relationship
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The NBA “has ramped up its Internet presence during the 2012 playoffs, launching league accounts on Pinterest and Tumblr and taking its Twitter game to another level,” according to Zach McCann of ESPN.com. The NBA's Pinterest page “features shoes, jerseys and apparel, in hopes the coolest products will get pinned and re-pinned to help the league’s merchandise sales.” The Tumblr blog “is a tribute to classic NBA playoff moments.” Pinterest and Tumblr give the league “the ability to provide a more visual-based look to users, something Facebook and especially Twitter can’t provide as fluidly.” However, the league is "still putting effort into its Twitter presence.” It created “two pages on its website -- the Playoffs Pulse page and the Social Spotlight page -- that document and highlight what’s being said about the NBA on Twitter.” Playoffs Pulse “lists the NBA’s trending players by hour throughout the playoffs.” McCann: “It’s pretty cool. For example, you can see people were talking about Chris Paul on Monday night during the Clippers’ victory over the Grizzlies" (ESPN.com, 5/8).
THUNDER STRUCK: In Oklahoma City, Mel Bracht noted the Thunder-Mavericks Western Conference First Round series averaged a combined 20.5 local rating in the Oklahoma City market, a 28% increase "over the Thunder's first-round series last season against the Denver Nuggets, which averaged 16.0 in five games” (NEWSOK.com, 5/8)....In Dallas, Barry Horn reported the Mavericks season-ending Game Four loss to the Thunder “scored a four-game worst 6.4 rating in Dallas-Fort Worth.” Horn: “And here's the craziest numbers: Friday night's Rangers-Indians game on KTXA-CBS topped Saturday night's Mavericks-Thunder game: 6.6 to 6.4” (DALLASNEWS.com, 5/7).
"UFC on Fox 3” earned a 1.5 final rating and 2.4 million viewers from 8:00-10:10pm ET on Saturday night for a card that featured Nate Diaz defeating Jim Miller, marking the least-viewed UFC telecast on Fox to date. That figure is down 42% and 48%, respectively, from a 2.6 rating and 4.7 million viewers for “UFC on Fox 2” on Jan. 28, which featured Rashad Evans defeating Phil Davis. The net’s first UFC broadcast on Nov. 12, which was a one-hour telecast featuring Junior Dos Santos’ defeat of Cain Velasquez for the heavyweight title, earned a 3.1 rating and 5.7 million viewers. Saturday's telecast did win Fox the night among adults 18-49. The broadcast was Fox' fifth Saturday night sports telecast this year to date, and each telecast has led the net to a win for the night in the demo (Austin Karp, THE DAILY).
LEARNING CURVE: In Baltimore, David Zurawik writes MASN analyst Mike Bordick “has a lot of promise ... but I also think he has a steep learning curve ahead of him if he want to be a major leaguer in the booth.” Compared to Baseball HOFer Jim Palmer, with whom Bordick splits the season, “almost anyone would seem weak -- especially someone just starting out in the broadcast booth like Bordick.” Zurawik: “Everyone is probably right about Bordick being such a nice guy, but right now, that might also be the biggest part of his problem. He's too nice, too modest, and not egotistical enough.” He also “needs to be more aggressive in terms of air time” (Baltimore SUN, 5/9).
DONE DEAL IN SAN DIEGO: In San Diego, Bill Center reports MLB “recently approved Fox Sports San Diego’s 20-year, $1 billion television agreement with the Padres.” A Fox spokesperson said, “We said all along it was a formality.” However, the FSSD signal “still only reaches around 60 percent of the area’s viewers” (SAN DIEGO UNION-TRIBUNE, 5/9).
NOTES: Comcast SportsNet Bay Area “has begun providing sports news and commentary for the website of NBC Bay Area (KNTV).” The arrangement of Comcast’s RSNs providing coverage for their local NBC affiliates “might be duplicated in other cities like Philadelphia, Dallas, Baltimore and New York.” For now, the Bay Area “is the only market with such an agreement with its local NBC affiliate” (BIZJOURNALS.com, 5/8)....Bell Media has created a series “of eight original documentaries” about the CFL entitled “Engraved on a Nation” to celebrate this year’s 100th Grey Cup. The series will be shown “in September on TSN, CTV and the French-language RDS networks” (TORONTO STAR, 5/8).