Following longtime Houston Rockets play-by-play announcer Bill Worrell’s retirement this past year, many Houston Rocket fans were speculating on who would be taking over that role and if there would be any other changes to the broadcast team.
The Rockets have made their decision, and it will be a familiar voice for Rockets fans. Craig Ackerman will make the transition from the team’s radio booth to working on the TV side of things for AT&T Sportsnet, the Houston Rockets’ television home.
Ackerman had previously been working road games for the network part-time, as well as home games for the Rockets for the last five years.
He will be joined by a not so familiar name however, as Ryan Hollins will join Ackerman as the color commentator for the upcoming 2021-22 NBA season.
Hollins had previously been working as a game analyst for CBS and a studio analyst for the Los Angeles Clippers as well as co-hosting a podcast with fellow former NBA player Brendan Haywood. He will be replacing Matt Bullard who previously held the role.
Joining them during select games will be Mario Elie, a former member of the Houston Rockets, as well as Cayleigh Griffin, who will remain as the crew’s sideline reporter.
Replacing Ackerman on the radio side will be Matt Thomas, who has been working radio broadcasts for the Rockets road games. He will now serve as the full time radio voice for the team.
Darren Rovell Signs Extension With Action Network
“The trajectory of growth in this industry over the last three years has been incredible and I’m thrilled to be a part of this ride.”
Darren Rovell has been at The Action Network since he left ESPN in 2018, and it appears that he isn’t going anywhere else anytime soon.
Rovell wrote an article on the company’s website discussing all of the reasons that he felt staying with the network was the right move for him.
“Over the past couple months, as my original deal with The Action Network was coming to a close, I was confronted with the choice of whether to return or to take my brand to one of those cushy sportsbook deals,” said Rovell. “At The Action Network, I am surrounded by a team that is uniquely talented at executing best-in-class data-driven sports betting content with such aplomb. Combine that with the resources given to us thanks to our acquisition by Better Collective this past year and I felt it would be virtually impossible to build the structure we have here anywhere else.”
The details of how long Rovell will agree to continue to be at the network are unclear at this point. It seems that Rovell is content doing exactly what he has been at The Action Network.
“You can count on me to continue to tell you what’s happening at the sportsbooks, to report the big bets and the bettors making them and to keep you updated on anything topical that could count as gambling these days from sports memorabilia to NFTs,” he added.
ESPN To Celebrate Dick Vitale During 2021 V Week
“Raising funds for cancer research is a long-standing tradition at ESPN.”
ESPN’s 15th annual V Week for cancer research and awareness begins today, and ESPN has a whole bunch of promotions in store for the special event.
ESPN is launching the Campaign for a Cause: ESPN and the V Foundation x StockX, which allows fans to have a chance to win celebrity sneakers and memorabilia during V Week through StockX’s Campaign for a Cause benefiting the V Foundation.
Celebrities involved in the campaign include Drake, Kevin Durant, Mike Krzyzewski, Nyjah Huston, Naomi Osaka, and more.
A new addition to V Week is is the development of #VStrongBaby to show support for ESPN college basketball analyst Dick Vitale, who returned to call his first game of the men’s college basketball season last Tuesday after being diagnosed with lymphoma in October. The hashtag is accompanied by a customized heart emoji in honor of the legendary commentator, which ESPN will feature throughout V Week.
ESPN also continues on in funding the Stuart Scott Memorial Cancer Research Fund, which continues to address health inequities that exist in cancer.
“The ongoing pandemic has continued to disrupt the critical need to fundraise for cancer research and address the health disparities impacting people of color in their fight against cancer,” said Kevin Martinez, vice president of ESPN Corporate Citizenship. “Raising funds for cancer research is a long-standing tradition at ESPN, and we are committed to continuing our work to close the gap in cancer disparities experienced by patients of minority populations and improve their outcomes.”
Along with these traditions, the Jimmy V Men’s and Women’s classics take place next week. The Men’s Classics begin Tuesday, December 7, followed by the Women’s Classics on Sunday, December 12, all airing live on ESPN.
Since the V Foundation’s inception in 1993, ESPN has helped raise more than $142 million in the fight to end cancer. Direct donations can be made at www.v.org/donate.
Outkick Planning Live Pregame Show For Georgia vs Alabama
Chad Withrow, Jonathan Hutton and Jill Savage will host the show, with Clay Travis joining in periodically throughout the show.
Alabama versus Georgia is sure to be the talk of the college football world this week. The game will have huge implications on the College Football Playoff selection the following day.
Outkick has announced that it will be covering the SEC Championship Game this Saturday with its own live show from Atlanta.
Kickoff for the actual game is scheduled for 4 p.m. Eastern. But you can get a head start with Clay Travis and OutKick the Tailgate pregame show long before that, with their broadcast starting at 1:30 EST.
Chad Withrow, Jonathan Hutton and Jill Savage will host the show, with Clay Travis joining in periodically throughout.
The Outkick the Tailgate pregame show will be taking place live in Atlanta, Georgia at STATS Brewpub not far from the game taking place at Mercedes-Benz Stadium. Those who are in attendance for the live show can enter for a chance to win merchandise autographed by Alabama coach Nick Saban and receive other prizes as well.
Those who cannot be in attendance can watch via live stream either on the Outkick Youtube channel or on Twitter where full coverage of the pregame show will be aired. It will also be aired on the Outkick website.
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