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NY Daily News’ Bob Raissman: Phil Simms Should Be Amazon’s ‘TNF’ Analyst

Former New York Giants linebacker Carl Banks is campaigning for Fox to hire his old teammate for the broadcast booth.

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Phil Simms

News dropped last week that Troy Aikman is reportedly set to join the Monday Night Football booth on ESPN. Now, not only does Fox need a new color commentator alongside Joe Buck, but Amazon is still on the lookout for an analyst for its Thursday Night Football broadcast on Prime Video this fall.

New York Daily News columnist Bob Raissman believes the man Amazon should be looking at for the position is Phil Simms.

“He may not be fresh off the field, but Simms sounds like he never left it,” Raissman wrote. “Most importantly, Simms has a distinct personality. His country wit, and comforting presence, makes him one of the most likeable NFL analysts on TV. Yet he also has the unique ability to deliver hard truths and caustic opinions (even on the NFL media) when necessary.”

Simms, who has been with CBS for nearly 20 years, has the experience working games with some of the best in the business (Greg Gumbel, Jim Nantz, Dick Enberg). The chance to add another veteran voice to the presentation, Raissman writes, is something that Amazon brass should realize is staring them in the face.

Raissman isn’t the only one sharing that opinion, by the way. Former New York Giants linebacker Carl Banks is campaigning for Fox to hire his old teammate for the broadcast booth.

Responding to Banks’s tweet, WFAN’s Evan Roberts and Craig Carton also advocated Simms as a good hire for Fox.

“(T)hey should realize there is a marquee voice in the ozone who would bring instant credibility to their product, a voice who is as good or better than any of the candidates who have surfaced,” Raissman wrote.

No telling if Simms has anything in his current CBS contract that would allow him to make the jump to Amazon if they came calling. But Raissman and others are clearly advocating for the former Giants quarterback to get a shot.

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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.”

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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.

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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?”

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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.

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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.”

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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.

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