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PTI Rips Other ESPN Shows For Aaron Rodgers Coverage

Tony Kornheiser and Mike Wilbon spoke on PTI on Monday about Aaron Rodgers Monday night interview on SportsCenter.

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ESPN icons and real-life Statler and Waldorf embodiments Michael Wilbon and Tony Kornheiser spoke at length on Pardon The Interruption on Monday about Green Bay Packer quarterback Aaron Rodgers’s late-night SportsCenter appearance.

Rodgers joined the program in a taped interview — later shown to be warranted — to give his well wishes to longtime anchor Kenny Mayne, who was anchoring his final show at the network. The Packer quarterback has been a fashionable topic of conversation at ESPN as pundits posit whether or not he will remain with the only team he has called home. Wilbon, a notorious Chicago Bear fan, did not mince words when discussing his feelings on the ongoing coverage of the saga.

“I know everybody at this network has to fawn all over this story every minute of every day, I’m not going to because there wasn’t enough there,” he said of the previous night’s Rodgers-Mayne visit.

Kornheiser also lamented the lack of substance, calling Rodgers “vague and mysterious” for his answers about the situation. The quarterback spoke of his love for seemingly everyone in the organization all the way to the neighboring dairy farms, but notably omitted some executives in his praise. Kornheiser said how much he loves personnel sagas and that he laments the Dak Prescott contract negotiations came to a close, citing his similar feelings on the matter to that of another popular ESPN program.

“Like First Take, I could talk about him for 20 minutes every single day,” Kornheiser said, while wishing Rodgers would own up to his NBA-like star power and say what he wants to say. “What I want is a declaration of this is exactly what I feel and this is what I am going to do. Rodgers has leverage; he’s (like) an NBA player.”

Sports TV News

FanDuel TV Strikes Deal With ONE Championship Martial Arts

“We’ve long respected the content the ONE Championship team is producing and are looking forward to bringing their action to our audience through FanDuel TV and FanDuel+.”

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FanDuel TV and ONE Championship Martial Arts have struck a deal that will see the MMA, Muay Thai, kickboxing, and submission grappling series air weekly events on the newly launched channel.

“We’re eager to continue expanding the variety of content we’re offering at FanDuel TV to introduce our audience to emerging sports,” said FanDuel Chief Commercial Officer Mike Raffensperger. “We’ve long respected the content the ONE Championship team is producing and are looking forward to bringing their action to our audience through FanDuel TV and FanDuel+.”

ONE Championship is a top-five global sports property for digital viewership and engagement according to Nielsen measurements.

“We are thrilled to join the FanDuel TV lineup and give our passionate U.S. audience yet another way to engage with ONE Championship,” said ONE Championship Chairman and CEO Chatri Sityodtong. “Having a quality partner in FanDuel will help raise the profile of our company in the region and provide their viewers with action-packed martial arts events like they have never seen before.”

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Bob Costas Re-Lives First Announcing Assignment For NBC

“My biography usually says I began with them in 1980, but technically the first time I was on the air with them was in December 1979.”

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Legendary sports broadcaster Bob Costas appeared on KNBR’s Tolbert & Copes Thursday to discuss the death of Baseball Hall of Famer Gaylord Perry. But before the conversation turned to the recently departed pitcher, the show asked Costas about what he has announced that would surprise someone. He reminisced about his first time on the air for NBC.

“My very first assignment for NBC, my biography usually says I began with them in 1980, but technically the first time I was on the air with them was in December 1979,” Costas recounted. “There was a program on NBC then called Sports World. It was an anthology series that was their answer to the gold standard, ABC’s Wide World of Sports.

“So they traveled the globe, like Wide World of Sports did. So they sent me, wearing a red NBC jacket, to Tokyo to cover a sumo wrestling tournament with seven-time world power-lifting champion Larry Pacifico as my color man. Now, this is all the Japanese I learned as we came on the air: ‘Minasan kon’nichwa watashinoamaeha Bob Costas’, which means ‘Hello everyone, my name is Bob Costas’. If ever there was typecasting, when they sat and looked at their roster of announcers and went ‘Who should we send to the sumo wrestling? It’s gotta be Costas, who’s entire body weight would constitute one meal for the sumo wrestling champion.”

Costas departed NBC Sports in 2019 after 40 years with the network, announcing MLB, NBA, and the Olympics, in addition to his work with the network’s sumo wrestling coverage.

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Matt Leinart, Alex Smith Make Wager Over Pac-12 Championship Game

“I gotta be honest with you: I’m not that nervous. I know that sounds kind of arrogant and confident.”

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FOX Sports analyst Matt Leinart and ESPN analyst Alex Smith have made a friendly wager over the upcoming Pac-12 Championship Game.

USC, Leinart’s alma mater, is slated to play Utah, where Smith attended, in the game Friday evening on FOX from Las Vegas.

The two agreed to don the other player’s jersey. “At least it will be 11,” Smith said, noting he and Leinart both wore the number during their playing days.

“I gotta be honest with you: I’m not that nervous,” Leinart said when presented with the offer. “I know that sounds kind of arrogant and confident.” Smith jokingly responded by calling USC “Free Agent University”. He added he would overnight Leinart a jersey to ensure he had one if the Utes were victorious.

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