While you won’t find the program High Noon on the ESPN weekday lineup anymore, you will still see its hosts, Bomani Jones and Pablo Torre, on the network and its digital properties for the foreseeable future.
On Tuesday, Andrew Marchand of the New York Post reported that ESPN will be bringing back Jones and Torre on multi-year contracts. Marchand reports that Jones’ contract will be two years, but Torre’s contract was unknown.
High Noon’s run lasted from 2018 till February of this year when ESPN decided to cancel the show. However, at the time of the news release, Torre’s wife was going into labor with his daughter.
As far as where you can catch Jones and Torre going forward, ESPN is planning to use their versatility on a variety of programs, according to Marchand:
Jones and Torre will not be a tandem, but their roles will be similar with components that include contributing on video and audio. They will contribute to shows like “Highly Questionable,” “Around The Horn” and “Pardon The Interruption,” as well as appear on “SportsCenter.” They will have some radio opportunities, as well as podcasts and writing.Andrew Marchand, The New York Post
Jones has been a part of the ESPN family since 2004 when he started writing for ESPN.com’s Page 2. You can find his podcast, The Right Time with Bomani Jones, on the ESPN Radio website. On the TV side, Jones is normally found on Highly Questionable and Around The Horn.
With The Last Dance series being a big hit for ESPN, Jones is currently narrating videos on different NBA teams in the 1990s that had their runs to a title stopped by Michael Jordan and the Chicago Bulls in a series titled Bulldozed.
Torre has been at ESPN since 2012 and you can normally find him on Highly Questionable and Around The Horn in addition to occasionally filling in on Outside The Lines and other ESPN podcasts.
With ESPN Radio making changes going forward as Will Cain will be heading over to FOX News, Jones and Torre could be a part of the new lineup in some way with the experience they have behind a microphone. While their show may no longer be on the network, they still have crafted themselves spots in numerous forms on the digital platform.
Story provided by BSM contributor Ricky Keeler. Follow him on Twitter @Rickinator555.
Poll Data Shows Tepid Response To Tom Brady Joining FOX
“A recent Harris Poll conducted on behalf of Front Office Sports showed that 1 in 3 Americans are more likely to watch a game with Brady on the microphone.”
FOX Sports reportedly signed Tom Brady to a 10-year deal worth $375 million to make the seven-time Super Bowl champion the new lead analyst for its top NFL broadcast once his playing career is over.
A recent Harris Poll conducted on behalf of Front Office Sports showed that 1 in 3 Americans are more likely to watch a game with Brady on the microphone.
The poll said 2 in 5 NFL fans have a better opinion of FOX Sports following the deal, with 41% of NFL fans being at least somewhat more likely to watch a game with Brady as an analyst.
Data shows one-third of NFL fans think the deal Brady reportedly agreed to is worth about the same as its reported value.
That reaction could probably be described as “tepid”. That may be exactly what FOX expects and maybe all it wants.
Last week, Domonique Foxworth of ESPN suggested that the paycheck is less about what the network thinks Tom Brady means to viewers and more about showing the NFL that the network values its product.
FOX Not Interested In Joining Streaming Sports Wars
“All this fight that’s going on, sort of gladiatorial kind of bloodshed, is really for that last position, right, in the three to four services that people will take?”
The CEO of FOX doesn’t plan on forking over billions of dollars to be people’s last choice for paid streaming services.
Lachlan Murdoch said at a time when more than 80% of American homes already have some kind of paid streaming service, it’s not worthwhile to jump on that train.
Amazon, Netflix and Disney+ typically account for the average streaming presence in a household.
“All this fight that’s going on, sort of gladiatorial kind of bloodshed, is really for that last position, right, in the three to four services that people will take,” Murdoch said at a tech conference earlier this year. “And so the billions of dollars that’s being spent by multiple aspirants is all for that last position. And so we are extraordinarily — I want to say that — we’re happy to be sort of sitting on the sidelines.”
Murdoch told Benjamin Swinburne that when it comes to the NFL, FOX’s media rights are the same as CBS, NBC and ESPN. The main focus for the company remains on keeping games on TV.
“We don’t believe it helps us to put those rights under a streaming service or free on over-the-air. We think it’s very important that those rights remain exclusive to the broadcast environment,” Murdoch said.
FOX does stream games through its app, but it is only the games it is also carrying on its broadcast network or FS1.
NBA Draft To Get Simulcast From ESPN & ABC
“This follows the simulcast model ESPN and ABC have employed for several years with the NFL Draft.”
ESPN is set for the 2022 NBA Draft coming up on June 23 at 8 p.m. from the Barclays Center in Brooklyn. The network announced Wednesday the crews that will handle coverage on both ESPN and ABC.
ABC will broadcast the first round in primetime. Kevin Negandhi will host and will be joined by Stephen A. Smith, Chiney Ogwumike and Jalen Rose. Monica McNutt will be reporting and interviewing draftees.
This follows the simulcast model ESPN and ABC have employed for several years with the NFL Draft.
Malika Andrews will host both rounds for ESPN. Jay Bilas, Kendrick Perkins and Adrian Wojnarowski will share the set. Analysts Bobby Marks and Mike Schmitz will contribute.
“We’re thrilled that Malika Andrews will host this year’s ESPN presentation as she brings her well-documented, widespread skillset to our main set,” said David Roberts, head of NBA and Studio Production for ESPN. “The event will showcase the scope and depth of our NBA and college basketball talent roster with accomplished journalists and high-profile personalities across ESPN, ABC and ESPN Radio.”
ESPN will air a pre-draft red carpet show hosted by Cassidy Hubbarth from 5-6 p.m. Perkins and Richard Jefferson will also make appearances.