Throughout the day on Tuesday, the whole sporting world, and the non-sporting world for that matter, were on edge after news broke that Tiger Woods had been in a car crash out in California. He had emergency surgery to try to repair significant injuries to his ankle and right leg. Woods’ foundation released an update on the situation Tuesday night.
When this news broke, many thought back as to how Woods had impacted their life through watching him dominate professional golf. One of those people was Nick Wright, one of the hosts of First Things First on FS1. Wright said Woods helped him bond with his grandfather when he was a kid.
“In 1996, I remember the room I was in in my house. My grandfather calls me from Florida. I am in my dad’s office and he says you have to turn on the television. There’s this kid who is going to be the greatest golfer ever. From that moment, it was like a drug and I was hooked.”
Wright said that for a three-year period, Woods felt like one of the lone constants in his life.
“From 2006-2008, I think the only constant in my life was Tiger Woods. My parents got divorced, I had falling out and re-united with family members, I moved a couple of times and Tiger was it. In 2009, I signed up for Twitter and my first tweet ever was on Tiger’s car crash and then he was gone from my life for a long time.”
As Wright eventually became a father, he got to sit down with his daughter to watch Woods win at Augusta and they were able to connect over that.
“My youngest daughter and I bonded over watching him at The Masters. Made her want to pester me about golf lessons. Asking when we can watch Tiger.”
Later in the segment, Wright did mention it is not the time to talk about the GOAT argument when it comes to Tiger, but even if he doesn’t get to win another major, Tiger still that had last big golf moment.
“I’m like oddly choked up about this. I know he didn’t pass, I know he’s going to be okay, but it feels like a sports loss. I am so glad he got that Masters moment because if he doesn’t get another major, that walk to 18 at 2019 that was unlike anything we had seen in golf. It was a singular moment in golf history. If that’s his last significant golf memory, it was his great one.”
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.