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Volume 26 No. 230
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CNN's Jeff Zucker Dishes On WarnerMedia's Sports Interests

Zucker said that he would like the NBA to address teams that rest their players too often
Photo: TONY FLOREZ
Zucker said that he would like the NBA to address teams that rest their players too often
Photo: TONY FLOREZ
Zucker said that he would like the NBA to address teams that rest their players too often
Photo: TONY FLOREZ

Yesterday was a big day for political news, as the House of Representatives held its first public hearings on impeachment for President Trump. But that did not stop CNN Worlwide President Jeff Zucker from speaking to those in attendance at Day 2 of the Endeavor Streaming Sports Media & Technology conference about his company's sports strategy. Zucker, who also serves as WarnerMedia News & Sports Chair, joked that there is "nothing else going on in the world today" and he was "exactly where he wanted to be." While he said he felt "slightly" anxious about being away from CNN HQ, "the rest of the world would take care of itself." Below are some of the highlights from Zucker's featured interview.

WHAT'S AHEAD FOR WARNERMEDIA:

On when the next Tiger vs. Phil match might be: "It's a little bit of a timing issue with regard to coordinating everybody's calendars and schedules and what's right for them and what's right for us. But it's something I think all the parties involved want to do again."

On the future of B/R Live once the HBO Max streaming service launches in May: "Live programming -- live news, live sports -- is not part of the first phase of that launch. But it is something that will be part of HBO Max down the road. What does that mean, or what is that timing? I can't say for sure. Is it two years? I don't know yet. But it'll be the second or third phase of HBO Max."

On the future of the network's MLB package: "We'd like to stay in baseball. There are some things we'd like to see change. ... Baseball has to continue to evolve itself, and I think they know that."

STATUS REPORT:

On UEFA Champions League rights going to CBS in fall '21: "We made a bid. We wanted to keep it and we made a bid that we thought was appropriate for us and appropriate for our business and our business model."

On NBA ratings being down to start the season: "There have been a number of injuries that hurt this first part of the season. ... One of the things that needs to be addressed is top players sitting too often. ... The league certainly has some influence over teams and I'd like to see them exert that a little bit."

GETTING POLITICAL:

On being away from CNN HQ during impeachment hearings: "The teams that are handling the coverage back in New York and Washington are actually happy I'm not there, because they'll only get half of the number of emails they normally get."

On being targeted by Trump on Twitter: "It doesn't bother me. I'm used to it at this point. It's like I see it and just laugh. I'm very aware that he does this. I know why he does this, and I really don't pay attention to it."