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Volume 25 No. 238
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Redskins' Preseason Broadcasts To Have Predictive Gaming Element

The NFL will take its first tentative step toward legalized gambling this week via a Redskins preseason game on NBC Sports Washington. During the Redskins preseason game against the Browns this Thursday, the RSN’s overflow channel -- NBC Sports Washington Plus -- will be a free-to-play “Predict the Game” telecast that will offer cash prizes of $1,000 per quarter. The NBCS Washington Plus channel will have “Predict the Game” telecasts for all four Redskins preseason games. “We want casual fans to be more involved in the broadcast,” NBCSW Senior VP & GM Damon Phillips said. “When they are more involved, they stay longer.” NBCSW has been a leader in gambling-related sports telecasts. In January, it started producing “Predict the Game” telecasts in partnership with Monumental Sports for eight Wizards games. Earlier this spring, RSN executives approached the Redskins about ways to enhance the broadcast of the team’s preseason games. The team was open to “Predict the Game” telecasts and advocated for the NFL to give its blessing.

KEEPING IT SIMPLE: The “Predict the Game” telecast will have the same video and audio as the traditional telecasts, which will run on NBC’s local over-the-air channel WRC and NBCSW. “Predict the Game” graphics and interactivity will be part of the telecast on NBC Sports Plus. iPowow will provide the gaming platform; ChyronHego is helping with the live TV integration. “Predict the Game” has viewers guess about who will have the most rushing yards in a quarter or who will record the most tackles. The RSN’s Redskins partnership will have some differences from the Wizards telecast. The Redskins games will have fans win every quarter rather than having one winner at the end of the game, and the telecast will feature many more questions. “We learned that instant gratification for viewers is important,” Phillips said. It also will feature a leaderboard because “people want to know where they stand. ... We’re learning a lot. We’re establishing ourselves as a leader in this space,” Phillips said.