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Sportsbooks Scale Back NFL Game Ad Buys

“According to iSpot.tv data, DraftKings, and FanDuel slowed their ad buys significantly in Week 5. Going from 30 units in Week 4 to just 14 this past Sunday.”

Russ Heltman

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Sports betting brands were all over NFL TV coverage over the first month of the 2021 season, but that changed in Week 5.

According to iSpot.tv data, DraftKings, and FanDuel slowed their ad buys significantly in Week 5. Going from 30 units in Week 4 to just 14 this past Sunday. FanDuel really slowed up, running just ten units last week after averaging nearly 41 per week over the first month of the season.

FanDuel has spent roughly $28 million on ads this season and represents 45% of the spending from sports betting companies. DraftKings has spent $15.33 million total but went from spending $7.29 million in Week 1 to just $460,000 last Sunday.

The NFL ad category is starting to crowd as we get deeper into the season. It makes sense that newer brands like FanDuel and DraftKings wanted to get their betting information to fans en masse over the first month before scaling back after reaching plenty of the football-watching audience.

On top of the scale back, other industries are pushing to get their products in front of viewers during a major bounceback season so far for NFL ratings. Hollywood, in particular, is flexing its spending muscle as more and more theaters open up and the moviegoing public gets comfortable returning.

According to iSpot, movie studios gobbled up 143 units since the season began — shelling out $44.3 million for the space. Around this time in 2020, those same studios were still sitting on a massive trove of unreleased movies and a dead theater scene. That led to them purchasing just 41 units for $8.75 million by this point in the 2020 season.

Betting ads aren’t going away for good though. Caesars Entertainment is expected to jump ahead of DraftKings in NFL TV ad spending by this week and all of the competing brands will continue funneling their dollars to the right games throughout 2021.

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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Sports TV News

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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Sports TV News

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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