SBD/October 7, 2013/Media

WNBA Finals Game 1 Gets Good Coverage From ESPN, Twin Cities Newspapers

ESPN gave Game 1 of the WNBA Finals prominent placement on last night’s “SportsCenter,” as highlights of the Lynx’ 84-59 win came about 17 minutes into the broadcast on a busy sports day. The two-minute highlight clip immediately followed the second commercial break. It followed highlights from three NFL games and Braves-Dodgers NLDS Game 3, but came before mention of Cardinals-Pirates NLDS Game 3 and the Presidents Cup. The amount of WNBA coverage on “SportsCenter” last night is comparable to how ESPN, the league’s rights holder, has aired throughout the postseason, though it typically has aired in the second half of the show. FS1’s “Fox Sports Live” did not air highlights from Dream-Lynx Game 1, though it did include the score on its ticker (Paul Sanford, Television Editor).

FIT FOR PRINT: Both major daily newspapers in the Twin Cities gave the Lynx’ win front-page treatment this morning. The Minneapolis Star Tribune had a large picture above the fold of Lynx Fs Maya Moore and Monica Wright celebrating along with a small write-up before directing readers to the front page of the sports section. The St. Paul Pioneer Press also had an above-the-fold picture of Lynx F Seimone Augustus celebrating with fans. Both papers had bylined reports in the sports section. The Atlanta Journal-Constitution had an AP report from the game on the cover of its sports section, but no bylined pieces (Austin Karp, Assistant Managing Editor).

SCHEDULING ISSUES: In Illinois, Patricia Babcock rhetorically asked if the WNBA playoffs are currently taking place and wrote, “Yeah, I almost forgot, too.” Dream-Lynx Game 1 was played “smack dab in the middle of Sunday Night Football.” It has “been an entire week since both teams punched their Finals ticket, which is par for the course in the WNBA’s bizarre world of scheduling.” That the WNBA is “trying to stage its marquee event during the middle of football season is unfortunate, at best.” The league “seems to have no rhyme or reason to its scheduling” (Illinois DAILY HERALD, 10/5).
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Media, WNBA, ESPN, Fox

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