NBA Western Conference Finals Game 5 Delivers Largest NBA Audience on ESPN Since 2012

  • Average Audience of 8.9 Million Tune-in to See Golden State Defeat Houston
  • Game 5 on ESPN Peaks with 10.8 Million Viewers
  • Most-Watched NBA Playoffs Telecast of 2015 on any Network

NBA Western Conference Finals Game 5 on ESPN – the Golden State Warriors defeated the Houston Rockets to advance to the NBA Finals – delivered the largest NBA audience on ESPN in three years, according to Nielsen.

An average audience of 8,887,000 (p2+) watched Game 5, which is the most-viewed NBA game on ESPN since Game 7 of the 2012 Eastern Conference Finals – Miami Heat versus Boston Celtics. Additionally, it’s the most-watched ESPN telecast of 2015 since the inaugural College Football National Championship on January 12, 2015. Game 5 delivered a peak audience of 10,786,000 viewers.

Wednesday’s telecast also stands as the most-watched game of the NBA Playoffs on any network.

Additionally, Game 5 delivered a 5.6 U.S. household rating, making it the highest-rated telecast of the night across key demos, including M18-34, M18-49, M25-54, P18-34, P18-49, and P25-54.

 ABC will exclusively present the 2015 NBA Finals – Golden State Warriors versus Cleveland Cavaliers – beginning with Game 1 on Thursday, June 4, at 9 p.m. ET. More coverage details will be released in the coming days.

 -30-

 Media contact: Ben Cafardo at 860-766-3496 or ben.cafardo@espn.com (@Ben_ESPN).

 

BYTES: @NBCSN TWITTER HANDLE TO PERISCOPE BELMONT STAKES DRAW WEDNESDAY, JUNE 3, AT NOON ET

NBC SPORTS DIGITAL “BYTES”

May 28, 2015 – Vol. 58

@NBCSN Twitter Handle to Periscope Belmont Stakes Draw

Kentucky Derby and Preakness Stakes winner American Pharoah runs for history on Saturday, June 6 on NBC, aiming to become the first Triple Crown winner since Affirmed in 1978. The NBCSN Twitter handle, @NBCSN, will live stream the Belmont Draw via Periscope Wednesday, June 3, at Noon ET from Rockefeller Center, which will determine the post positions on race day.

Coverage from Belmont Park in Elmont, N.Y., begins Friday, June 5, at 3:30 p.m. ET on NBCSN, and culminates with the running of the 147th Belmont Stakes Saturday, June 6, at 4:30 p.m. ET on NBC.

Stanley Cup Playoffs Up 20% in Uniques and 36% Minutes Watched on NBC Sports Live Extra

To date, the 2015 Stanley Cup Playoffs on NBC Sports Live Extra are up 20% in uniques and 36% in minutes watched, averaging 48,000 uniques and 2.2 million minutes watched per game, versus the comparable period in 2014.  Through 12 games, the NHL Conference Finals on Live Extra are up 43% in uniques and 65% in minutes watched, totaling 566,000 uniques and 53.5 million minutes watched, from same number of conference finals games in 2014.

Coverage continues with two Conference Final Game 7s on Friday and Saturday nights. The Tampa Bay Lightning visiting the New York Rangers in Game 7 of the Eastern Conference Final tomorrow at 8 p.m. ET on NBCSN. NBC presents live coverage of Game 7 of the Western Conference Final on Saturday night in primetime at 8 p.m. ET, when the Anaheim Ducks host the Chicago Blackhawks.

Follow the NBA Finals on CSNBayArea.com!

Comcast SportsNet Bay Area (@CSNAuthentic), the home of “Authentic Bay Area Sports,” has announced its multi-platform coverage of the Golden State Warriors-Cleveland Cavaliers series in the 2015 NBA Finals. The network’s complete Warriors-Cavs coverage includes daily news, preview and analysis programs, SportsNet Central pregame and postgame shows and in-depth online coverage from CSNBayArea.com.

CSNBayArea.com announced that before and immediately after every game, SportsNet Central: Warriors Playoff Central will be available online and streamed live through their website and the NBC Sports Live Extra app for tablets and mobile devices.

CSNBayArea.com will deliver complete NBA Finals coverage and showcases Warriors Insider Monte Poole, CSN reporter Kevin Kurz and Senior Insider Ray Ratto on the site’s “WarriorsTalk” section (@CSNWarriors, #WarriorsTalk), and provides insightful analysis and breakdown, daily insider reports, special web-exclusive videos and commentator blogs. CSNBayArea.com is the most extensive local source for exclusive online video, player and coach interviews, press conferences and content from Comcast SportsNet’s SportsNet Central and Yahoo SportsTalk Live, which offer news and analysis from the region’s most informed local lineup of award-winning reporters, analysts and personalities. Additionally, CSNBayArea.com will utilize NBC Sports’ ProBasketballTalk for nationally-based NBA playoff content.

Record 317 Million Minutes of Live Premier League Action Streamed on NBC Sports Live Extra For the Season

On the strength of numerous innovations and programming initiatives, NBC Sports Group’s comprehensive season-long coverage of the Premier League – which concluded last weekend with NBCUniversal’s simultaneous presentation of all 10 “Championship Sunday” matches across 10 different television networks – produced viewership and consumption milestones for the 2014-15 season.

Premier League Streaming Milestones:

  • Viewers consumed a record total of 317 million minutes of live Premier League action via NBC Sports Live Extra during the 2014-15 season – up 22% from last season.
  • Coverage on Wednesday, March 4, set a single-day Premier League live-streaming record for minutes NBC Sports Live Extra (7.7 million) and included seven matches.
  • Chelsea’s 1-0 win against Manchester United on Saturday, April 18, ranks as the most-streamed weekend PL match in history, with more than 85,000 uniques on NBC Sports Live Extra.

Click here for more information.

ICYMI on NBC SportsWorld, NBC Sports Digital’s Long-Form Website

Joe Posnanski profiles MLB Hall of Famer Bob Feller, and how he turned his back on a glittering baseball career to fight in World War II. Click here for the long-form story on NBC SportsWorld.

Nate Ryan examines IndyCar’s issue with newly designed cars going airborne after being spun around backwards. Click here.

Douglas Robson explains why Novak Djokovic is more than ready for a French Open title run. Click here.

From sports to politics to Stupid Human Tricks, Posnanski looks back at David Letterman’s career. Click here.

— NBC SPORTS DIGITAL —

2015 US OPEN POLO CHAMPIONSHIP THIS SUNDAY, MAY 31, AT 4 PM ET ON NBCSN

Kenny Rice and Adam Snow Host Coverage

STAMFORD, Conn – May 28, 2015 – NBCSN presents coverage of the 2015 US Open Polo Championship final from the International Polo Club in Palm Beach, Fla., this Sunday, May 31, at 4 p.m. ET. The match between Valiente and Orchard Hill features 10-goal players Adolfo Cambiaso, Facundo Pieres and Polito Pieres.

Play-by-play announcer Kenny Rice calls the action, joined by polo hall of famer Adam Snow.

In addition to the on-field action and player interviews, the 90-minute program includes a 125th Anniversary commemoration of the United States Polo Association, featuring a look at rare photographs and early film footage of American polo from the archives of the United States Polo Museum and Hall of Fame, with insights provided by noted polo historian Dr. Horace Laffaye and the museum’s Executive Director George Dupont.

Click here for a preview of the telecast.

–NBC SPORTS GROUP–

 

Matt Millen Returns Home to FOX Sports

fox-sports-logo

Former Penn State All-American & Four-Time Super Bowl Champion

Joining Big Ten Network Announce Team

Also Contributes As College & Pro Football Studio Analyst for FOX Sports 1                                                                                    

Los Angeles & Chicago – Former college football All-American, four-time NFL Super Bowl champion linebacker and experienced broadcaster Matt Millen returns to the FOX Sports family of networks as the lead game analyst for the Big Ten Network, working alongside play-by-play announcer Kevin Kugler. Additionally, he appears in FOX Sports 1’s Los Angeles studio as both a college football and NFL analyst for the original news programs AMERICA’S PREGAME and FOX SPORTS LIVE.

A four-year letterman at defensive tackle for Penn State from 1976 to 1979, Millen was a member of Nittany Lions teams that posted a combined a 37-11 record, including back-to-back 11-1 campaigns in 1977 and 1978. He earned All-America honors for his performance in 1978, helping lead the program to an appearance in the National Championship game. Millen ranks fifth all-time in school history with 22 sacks and his 36 career tackles for loss are tied for eighth-best in program annals.

“Matt obviously has a great familiarity and history with the Big Ten Conference and we believe his experience and knowledge make him a perfect addition to our BTN coverage team,” said Mark Hulsey, BTN senior vice president and executive producer.

Following his standout college career, Millen was selected by the Oakland Raiders in the second round of the 1980 NFL Draft. After making the transition to the linebacker position, he went on to play 12 seasons in the league with the Raiders, San Francisco 49ers and Washington Redskins franchises. Millen was a member of four Super Bowl championship-winning teams, winning at least one with all three clubs he played for. He earned two-time first-team All-Pro honors in 1984 and 1985, was voted to the 1988 Pro Bowl and retired following the 1991 season after winning his fourth title with the Redskins in Super Bowl XXVI.

Millen pursued broadcasting after his retirement, joining CBS as an analyst for its NFL game telecasts in 1992, before signing on with the upstart FOX Sports for its presentation of the NFC

package in 1994. He later also served as a color analyst for Monday Night Football games on Westwood One radio.

In 2001, he moved from the broadcast booth to the front office when he accepted the position of team president for the Detroit Lions, a position he held from 2001 to 2008.

Millen returned to broadcasting in 2009 with ESPN, performing both college and pro football analyst duties through the end of last season. During his time at ESPN, he also made appearances as a game analyst for the NFL Network’s Thursday Night Football package and during the 2009 NFL Playoffs for NBC.

– FOX SPORTS –

Trailer Unveiled for NBA TV Originals’ Clutch City Documentary, Set to Premiere Monday, June 8, at 9 p.m. ET

NBA-TV-LogoNBA TV to Televise Countdown to Clutch City, a 30-Minute Pre-Show Special, at 8:30 p.m.

NBA TV has unveiled a trailer for its latest original documentaryClutch City – set to premiere Monday, June 8, at 9 p.m. ET during the NBA Finals. The documentary, produced as a part of the Sports Emmy Award-winning NBA TV Originals franchise, features extensive interviews with former Houston Rockets coach Rudy Tomjanovich and teammates Hakeem Olajuwon, Clyde Drexler, Kenny Smith, Robert Horry, Sam Cassell and Vernon Maxwell, among others, as they reflect on their back-to-back championships in the 1990s.

NBA TV’s premiere of the documentary will be preceded by Countdown to Clutch City at 8:30 p.m., a 30-minute show hosted by Vince Cellini that looks back at Houston’s championship legacy.  The show will include interviews with former Rockets, including Horry, along with special guests.

A few excerpts from NBA TV’s Clutch City documentary:

Smith on how Hakeem Olajuwon brought the team together by involving them in his MVP reception: “There’s never been a superstar who is as selfless as Hakeem. Zero. That gesture, to bring us up and have us with him and the trophy, was living proof of that. He made me feel that that was my MVP.”

Tomjanovich on the importance of his relationship with Olajuwon: “Hakeem is one of the most important people in my life because, if we don’t have this relationship, if we are not in each other’s lives, you’re not talking to me. I was the right guy for him. He was the right guy for me.”

Clutch City is the latest in a long line of NBA TV Originals’ critically acclaimed films and specials that include the Sports Emmy Award-winning The Doctor; the Emmy-nominated The Dream Team; and THE84DRAFT; as well as the network’s popular Open Court series.

About NBA TV

NBA TV is a part of NBA Digital, the NBA’s extensive cross-platform portfolio of digital assets jointly-managed by the NBA and Turner Sports including NBA TV, NBA.com, NBA LEAGUE PASS, NBA LEAGUE PASS Broadband, NBA Mobile, NBADLEAGUE.com and WNBA.com.

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NBC SPORTS GROUP TO PRESENT 11 HOURS OF THE 2015 PENN MUTUAL COLLEGIATE RUGBY CHAMPIONSHIP THIS WEEKEND

Sevens Rugby Action Begins Saturday at 3 p.m. ET on NBC

NBCSN Presents Six Hours of Coverage, Starting at 4:30 p.m. ET on Saturday

20 Colleges and Universities Represented, Including Defending-Champion Cal, Two-Time Champion Dartmouth, Alabama, Notre Dame and UCLA

Comcast SportsNet Philadelphia to Provide Coverage Throughout the Weekend

NBC Sports Live Extra to Provide Streaming Coverage

 

STAMFORD, Conn. – May 28, 2015 – NBC, NBCSN and Comcast SportsNet Philadelphia will combine to present 11 hours of coverage of the annual Penn Mutual Collegiate Rugby Championship this weekend from PPL Park in Philadelphia, Pa.

Coverage begins on Saturday at 3 p.m. ET on NBC with live preliminary-round matches, followed by live coverage on NBCSN at 4:30 p.m. ET, and an encore presentation at midnight ET on NBCSN. Penn Mutual Collegiate Rugby Championship coverage continues Sunday at 2 p.m. ET on NBCSN, and shifts to NBC at 4 p.m. ET with coverage of the Championship Final.

Mike Corey will serve as the play-by-play commentator for all telecasts. Corey will be joined in the booth by former USA Sevens captain and USA Rugby World Cup participant Brian Hightower. Tracy Wilson will report all the action from the sidelines.

The sixth annual Penn Mutual Collegiate Rugby Championship will be held at PPL Park and features 20 teams from various colleges, including defending-champion California, two-time tournament champion Dartmouth, Air Force, Alabama, Arizona, Arkansas State, Boston College, Clemson, Indiana, Kutztown, Life, Michigan, Navy, Notre Dame, Penn State, St. Joseph’s, Temple, Texas, Virginia Tech, and UCLA.

All matches will consist of seven players per team, playing on the same size pitch as a traditional 15’s rugby match. Teams will compete in one of five pools and will play seven minute halves, with a two-minute halftime. Rugby Sevens makes its return to the Olympics at the 2016 Summer Games in Rio, and a majority of the players on the U.S. National Team participated in the Penn Mutual Collegiate Rugby Championship.


COMCAST SPORTSNET PHILADELPHIA TO PROVIDE COVERAGE THROUGHOUT THE WEEKEND

Comcast SportsNet Philadelphia will provide coverage of the Penn Mutual Collegiate Rugby Championship on Saturday at 6:30 p.m. ET, with an encore presentation airing on The Comcast Network on Saturday at 9 p.m. ET. CSN Philadelphia’s coverage on Saturday will feature local colleges and universities, including Drexel, La Salle, Temple, Penn, Penn State, St. Joe’s, Villanova and Kutztown. SportsNet Central, CSN Philadelphia’s daily news program, and CSNPhilly.com will also provide coverage of the Penn Mutual Collegiate Rugby Championship this weekend.

 

2015 PENN MUTUAL COLLEGIATE RUGBY CHAMPIONSHIP TELECAST SCHEDULE

DATE TIME NETWORK
Saturday, May 30 3 p.m. ET NBC
Saturday, May 30 4:30 p.m. ET NBCSN
Saturday, May 30 6:30 p.m. ET CSN Philadelphia
Saturday, May 30 9 p.m. ET The Comcast Network*
Sunday, May 31 12 a.m. NBCSN*
Sunday, May 31 2 p.m. ET NBCSN
Sunday, May 31 4 p.m. ET NBC

*Encore presentation

 

NBC SPORTS LIVE EXTRA

NBC Sports Live Extra – NBC Sports Group’s live streaming product for desktops, mobile devices, and tablets – will stream the Penn Mutual Collegiate Rugby Championship via “TV Everywhere,” giving consumers additional value to for their subscription service, and making high quality content available to MVPD customers both in and out of the home and on multiple platforms. The NBC Sports Live Extra app is available on the iTunes App Store, Google Play and Windows Store.

For more information about NBC Sports Group shows and properties, including press releases, photos, talent and executive bios and headshots, please visit NBCSportsGroupPressBox.com.

 

-NBC SPORTS GROUP-

GOLF CHANNEL’S LIVE COVERAGE OF THE 2015 NCAA MEN’S GOLF CHAMPIONSHIPS BEGINS MONDAY, JUNE 1

Adding to the Network’s 25 Straight Days of Live Golf, Golf Channel Will Air More than 10 Hours of Live Tournament Action Monday-Wednesday, June 1-3

Golf Central to Provide Wraparound News Programming on Location, Including Live Announcements of Year-End Collegiate Golf Awards

Individual Stroke Play Final Round on Monday, June 1, Followed by Three Rounds of Team Match Play Tuesday-Wednesday, June 2-3

Golf Channel to Announce Haskins Award Presented by Stifel Winner on  Monday, June 1

BRADENTON, Fla., May 28, 2015 – Coming off of a dramatic and intense NCAA Division I Women’s Golf Championships – where Stanford claimed their first women’s national championship title and Alabama’s Emma Talley claimed individual honors – Golf Channel will shift its attention to the men for the NCAA Division I Men’s Golf Championships, featuring comprehensive news and tournament coverage Monday, June 1-Wednesday, June 3, as part of the network’s 25 straight days of live golf.

The NCAA Men’s Golf Championships will be contested on the same venue – The Concession Golf Club in Bradenton, Fla. – as the Women’s Golf Championships. Golf Channel’s live tournament coverage of the men’s championships begins on Monday, June 1 with the final round of the individual stroke play competition, as well as tracking the teams attempting to qualify for the eight-team match play tournament. Coverage will continue on Tuesday, June 2 and Wednesday, June 3, including all three rounds of the team match-play tournament. In addition, Golf Central will surround live tournament coverage with pre- and post-event news coverage produced on location, as well as daily news updates on Morning Drive and online at GolfChannel.com. News and tournament coverage also will be streamed live on Golf Live Extra.

Golf Channel NCAA Men’s Division I Golf Championships Tournament Coverage

Monday, June 1          Final Round, Individual Stroke Play     4-7 p.m. ET (Live)

Tuesday, June 2          Quarterfinals, Match Play                   10:30 a.m.-12:30 p.m. ET (Live)

Tuesday, June 2          Semifinals, Match Play                       3:30-7 p.m. ET (Live)

Wednesday, June 3     Finals, Match Play                              3-7 p.m. ET (Live)

Golf Central Announcing Haskins Award presented by Stifel Winner on Monday, June 1

For the first time, the Haskins Award winner will accept his award live on Golf Channel on Monday, June 1, on Golf Central. Since 1971, the Haskins Award presented by Stifel has honored the nation’s outstanding male collegiate golfer as selected by his peers, coaches and the media. The 2015 Haskins Award winner also will receive an exemption to play in The Greenbrier Classic on the PGA TOUR (June 29-July 5).

Golf Channel’s NCAA Men’s Golf Championships Tournament Broadcast Team:

  • Notah Begay, On-Course Reporter (Member of the 1994 NCAA Team National Champions, Stanford University)
  • Billy Ray Brown, On-Course Reporter (1982 NCAA Individual Champion, member of 3-time NCAA Team National Champions, University of Houston)
  • Steve Burkowski, Analyst, Golf Channel College Insider
  • Curt Byrum, Tower Announcer (Participant in 1979 NCAA Men’s Golf Championships, University of New Mexico)
  • Lanny Wadkins, Lead Analyst (3-time NCAA Division I Men’s Golf Championships participant – 1969 (10th), 1970 (2nd) and 1971 (6th), Wake Forest University.
  • Bob Papa, Play-by-Play Commentator
  • Phil Parkin, On-Course Reporter (All-American at Texas A&M, participant in 1984 NCAA Men’s Golf Championships)

Golf Central News Team Men’s Championship:

  • Buddy Alexander, Analyst (Former University of Florida men’s golf coach, two-time NCAA National Champions – 1993 and 2001. Member of the GCAA Coaches Hall of Fame)
  • Steve Burkowski, Golf Channel College Insider
  • Ryan Burr, Host
  • Angela Hamann, Reporter (University of Texas)
  • Gary Koch, Analyst (University of Florida, 1973 NCAA Golf Championships Runner-up and member of the 1973 National Championship team).
  • Charlie Rymer, Analyst (Georgia Tech, 4-time NCAA Men’s Golf Championships participant)

GolfChannel.com Digital Coverage

GolfChannel.com is providing comprehensive coverage during the NCAA Men’s Golf Championships as part of College Central (GolfChannel.com/college). College Central, led by Jay Coffin and Ryan Lavner, will be the source for all things NCAA golf, including tournament results, features and columns, video highlights and breaking news.

#Watch25 Sweepstakes Gives Viewers Chance to Win Daily Prizes via Social Media

Viewers have an opportunity to win prizes via social media during Golf Channel’s 25 Days of Live Golf through the #Watch25 sweepstakes. Golf Channel’s tournament on-air teams pose a daily trivia question asking viewers to tweet their answer using the hashtag #Watch25Sweeps. One winner is selected each day, and will receive prizes, including free rounds of golf courtesy of GolfNow. Viewers can follow @GolfChannel on Twitter, which will feature the daily opportunities to win the #Watch25 Sweepstakes.

Semifinal Teams in Match Play to Receive Invitations to Compete in Inaugural East Lake Cup

The new East Lake Cup collegiate match-play championship will feature top-performing teams from the NCAA Men’s and Women’s Golf Championships, taking place at historic East Lake Golf Club in Atlanta, Ga., airing live on Golf Channel later this year on Monday, Nov. 2 and Tuesday, Nov. 3. Invitations will be extended to the semi-finalists of the team match-play tournaments at both the NCAA Men’s and Women’s Golf Championships.

2015 NCAA Division I Men’s Golf Championship

Hosted by the University of South Florida, the 2015 NCAA Men’s Golf Championships will feature 30 teams and six student-athletes – who advanced from NCAA Regional Qualifying – competing in an individual stroke-play format over 72 holes Friday-Monday, with the top eight teams qualifying at the conclusion of play for the team match-play tournament Tuesday and Wednesday. All rounds on Golf Channel will include primetime replays.

ABOUT THE NCAA

The NCAA is a membership-led nonprofit association of colleges and universities committed to supporting academic and athletic opportunities for more than 450,000 student-athletes at more than 1,000 member colleges and universities.  Each year, more than 54,000 student-athletes compete in NCAA championships in Divisions I, II and III sports.  Visit www.NCAA.org and www.NCAA.com for more details about the Association, its goals and members and corporate partnerships that help support programs for student-athletes.

ABOUT GOLF CHANNEL

Golf Channel is a multimedia, golf entertainment and services company based in Orlando, Fla. Golf Channel, co-founded by Arnold Palmer in 1995 and now part of the NBC Sports Group, is available in more than 120 million homes in 83 countries and 12 languages around the world. Exclusive partnerships with the world’s top tours allow Golf Channel to feature more live golf coverage than all other networks combined, as well as a programming schedule distinguished by golf’s highest-quality news, instruction and original programming.  Golf Channel’s digital platforms, headed by GolfChannel.com, are the leading golf destinations on the Internet, delivering unmatched coverage of the world of golf. Fans are able to enjoy 24/7 live streaming of Golf Channel content through Golf Live Extra and select programming is simulcast via SiriusXM’s PGA TOUR Radio. In addition, Golf Channel connects the world to golf through a wide array of digital services including Golf Channel Mobile; GolfNow, the world’s largest online booking platform; GolfAdvisor.com, a golf course ratings and review portal; the interactive Golf Channel Academy instructional app; and the Golf Channel Am Tour, the world’s largest amateur golf tour.

-NBC Sports Group-

ESPN Weekly Enterprise jOURnalism Release

Reporter Jeremy Schaap & host Bob Ley discuss the issues on Wednesday’s expanded OTL.

“The FIFA Crisis”

ESPN Platforms

ESPN continues its extensive FIFA indictments coverage highlighted by tonight’s Outside the Lines Special: The FIFA Crisis at 7 p.m. ET on ESPN.

Below, some examples of the reports, analysis and commentary which have appeared across various ESPN platforms:

may28 otlpod

Wednesday’s Outside the Lines’ podcast

may28 538

How FIFA’s Structure Lends Itself To Corruption

By Carl Bialik, FiveThirtyEight’s lead writer for news

may28 fc

Sepp Blatter’s Future – What You Need to Know

By Gabriele Marcotti, columnist for ESPN FC

may28 .comm

The Buck Stops with Blatter

Video commentary by soccer play-by-play commentator Ian Darke

may28scenterlogo

The FIFA Crisis 

SportsCenter’s Robert Flores’ “Top Takes” video commentary

may28 e60

An Examination of the Most Powerful Man in Sports

Jeremy Schaap focuses on Sepp Blatter’s leadership of the organization overseeing world soccer.

 

The Ugly Game

ESPN The Magazine (“World Football Issue” on newsstands on Friday)

may28 theuglygame

Sepp Blatter is on the brink of winning his fifth term as FIFA president, even as the staging of the next two World Cups looks more contentious than ever. Based largely on a recent in-depth documentary produced by E:60 in which Jeremy Schaap told the tale of corruption, injustice and moral depravity behind FIFA’s naming Russia and Qatar as World Cup hosts, ESPN The Magazine presents a guide explaining just why everyone is so outraged with FIFA.

 

Life on the Streets

SportsCenter (Sunday, 10 a.m., ESPN)

ESPN.com (to be posted Sunday)

may 28 homeless

In an effort to get a closer look at the hardships homeless people in America endure every single day, two St. Louis Rams defensive linemen took to the streets for 24 hours with no place to sleep or eat, no connection to the outside world and only $4 each. SC Featured followed their story.

“It was the worst night I’ve ever had in my life for sure. My body hurts so bad right now.” — William Hayes, St. Louis Rams defensive end

“It’s amazing though when that cop went to talk to me, just how unsettled that felt, compared to like if a cop normally talks to me walking down the street.” — Chris Long, St. Louis Rams defensive end

Check ESPNFrontRow.com for a behind the scenes look at the making of the piece.

  

Cub-struction Project

Outside the Lines (Sunday, 9 a.m. ESPN; 10 a.m., ESPN2)

may 28 2015Credit: ESPN/Producer Willie Weinbaum

Cubs fan Holly Swyers at the May 11 re-opening of Wrigley’s bleachers

Their ballpark is 101 years old and their championship drought is 107. As the Chicago Cubs renovate the friendly confines of Wrigley Field, many question the effect on the park’s allure and whether it can help the team reach its first World Series since 1945. Cubs officials say modernization is a must to compete financially and on the field. Four

 Chicagoans discuss the contentious construction project as told to reporter T.J. Quinn and producer Willie Weinbaum.

“Part of being a Cubs fan is discovering there are ways to lose a game that you’ve never seen before and never imagined were possible. It is an incredibly frustrating experience, but it’s also part of, I think, what draws us together.” — Holly Swyers, Lake Forest College anthropologist & author of “Wrigley Regulars: Finding Community in the Bleachers”

“Will Wrigley Field lose some of its character? Sure. And it won’t be the same ballpark that I’ve walked into over the years. But if it brings us that championship, I’m all for it.” — Mike Reischl, Chicago police officer

 

What’s next for Kurt Busch and Patricia Driscoll

ESPN The Magazine (“World Football Issue” on newsstands Friday)

ESPN.com

may28buchhh

When Patricia Driscoll accused Kurt Busch of domestic violence, it made news. When Busch accused her of being an assassin, it went viral. Seth Wickersham reports.

 

Sports Reporters

This week’s Panel* (Sunday, 9:30 a.m. ESPN; 10:30 a.m., ESPN2)

sportsreporters_small

John Saunders

Howard Bryant

Jemele Hill

Bob Ryan

*Subject to change

 

NBC SPORTS GROUP PRESENTS DECISIVE GAME 7 NHL CONFERENCE FINAL MATCHUPS THIS WEEKEND ON NBCSN AND NBC

Eastern Conference Final Game 7 – Lightning-Rangers – Friday at 8 p.m. ET on NBCSN

Western Conference Final Game 7 – Blackhawks-Ducks – Saturday at 8 p.m. ET on NBC

Mike ‘Doc’ Emrick, Eddie Olczyk and Pierre McGuire Travel Coast-To-Coast to Call Back-To-Back Game 7’s

Game 6 Ducks-Blackhawks Delivers Ratings Milestone in Chicago

 

STAMFORD, Conn. – May 28, 2015 – NBC Sports Group presents back-to-back do-or-die Game 7 matchups in the NHL Conference Finals this weekend with a trip to the Stanley Cup Final hanging in the balance. Coverage begins tomorrow night at 8 p.m. ET on NBCSN when Henrik Lundqvist and the New York Rangers host Steven Stamkos and the Tampa Bay Lightning in Game 7 of the Eastern Conference Final.

NBC presents live coverage of Game 7 of the Western Conference Final on Saturday night in primetime at 8 p.m. ET, when Ryan Getzlaf and the Anaheim Ducks host Jonathan Toews and the Chicago Blackhawks. NBC Sports Live Extra – NBC Sports Group’s live streaming product for desktops, mobile devices, and tablets – will provide streaming coverage of both Game 7s.

Three-time Emmy Award-winning play-by-play commentator and Sports Illustrated 2014 Media Person of the Year Mike ‘Doc’ Emrick, U.S. Hockey Hall of Fame member and analyst Eddie Olczyk, and Emmy Award-winning Inside-the-Glass analyst Pierre McGuire will have the call of both Game 7 matchups.

Pre-game coverage of both Game 7 matchups begins at 7 p.m. ET on Friday and Saturday nights with NHL Live, featuring host Liam McHugh alongside analysts and former players Mike Milbury, Keith Jones and Brian Boucher.

This marks the first time in 15 years, and only the third time in Stanley Cup Playoff history, that both Conference Finals have required a Game 7. In 2000, the New Jersey Devils defeated the Philadelphia Flyers by a score of 2-1 in Game 7 of the Eastern Conference Final, while the Dallas Stars earned a 3-1 win against the Colorado Avalanche in Game 7 of the Western Conference Final.

The Rangers forced Friday night’s Game 7 with a 7-3 victory in Tampa in Game 6, and return to Madison Square Garden with a perfect 7-0 all-time in Game 7 matchups, including a 2-1 overtime win against Washington in the second round. Tampa Bay’s most recent Eastern Conference Final Game 7 appearance came in 2011, when the Lightning fell to the Bruins by a score of 1-0 in Boston. The Rangers last played in an Eastern Conference Final Game 7 in 1994, when Stephane Matteau scored in double overtime to give New York a 2-1 win over the New Jersey Devils.

The Blackhawks forced Saturday night’s primetime Western Conference Final Game 7 showdown on NBC with a 5-2 win in Game 6 on Thursday night. This marks the second straight Western Conference Final Game 7 for the Blackhawks, who lost 5-4 in overtime to the Los Angeles Kings in last year’s’ Game 7. The Ducks have never played in a Western Conference Final Game 7.

 

MIKE ‘DOC’ EMRICK, EDDIE OLCZYK AND PIERRE MCGUIRE TRAVEL COAST-TO-COAST TO CALL BACK-TO-BACK GAME 7s

Mike ‘Doc’ Emrick, Eddie Olczyk, and Pierre McGuire will travel coast-to-coast to call the Eastern Conference Final Game 7 at Madison Square Garden on Friday night and the Western Conference Final Game 7 at Honda Center on Saturday night.

Following the Lightning-Rangers game, the trio will depart for their respective hotels to get some brief sleep before getting up to board a 6 a.m. ET, 2,500-mile flight from Newark to LAX.

Doc, Edzo and Pierre will arrive at LAX at 9:08 a.m. PT and will check into their second hotel of the day. Their pre-game schedules may include attending practice, catching a nap, and getting a meal or two before calling their second Game 7 in 24 hours at Honda Center.

After Blackhawks-Ducks, it’s red eyes and morning flights to their respective homes to rest up for a few days before Game 1 of the Stanley Cup Final on Wednesday. Whew!

 

******************************************************************************
“NHL Playoff Pass” on NBC Sports Group Press Box provides a quick daily overview of Stanley Cup Playoff coverage, plus information and highlights. The Pass will be published weekdays to preview that evening’s games. Friday editions will include weekend information.
******************************************************************************

For more information on NBC Sports Group’s overall NHL Playoff coverage, please click here.

 

THE PASS – THURSDAY, MAY 28 – SATURDAY, MAY 30 (All times ET)

***THURSDAY, MAY 28 – NO GAMES SCHEDULED***

FRIDAY, MAY 29

Time Coverage Network Commentators
7 p.m. NHL Live NBCSN Liam McHugh, Mike Milbury,
Keith Jones, Brian Boucher
8 p.m. Game 7 – Tampa Bay at N.Y. Rangers NBCSN Mike ‘Doc’ Emrick, Eddie
Olczyk, Pierre McGuire

SATURDAY, MAY 30

7 p.m. NHL Live NBCSN Liam McHugh, Mike Milbury,
Keith Jones, Brian Boucher
8 p.m. Game 7 – Chicago at Anaheim NBC Mike ‘Doc’ Emrick, Eddie
Olczyk, Pierre McGuire

 


GAME 6 DUCKS-BLACKHAWKS DELIVERS CHICAGO’S BEST RATING OF 2015 PLAYOFFS

The Blackhawks’ 5-2 win over the Ducks in last night’s Game 6 on NBCSN delivered a 16.6 rating in Chicago, which stands as the best rating in Chicago on NBC or NBCSN in the 2015 playoffs, and ranks as the second-highest rating for a Conference Final game in Chicago on NBCSN, behind last year’s Game 7 vs. Los Angeles (22.7).

Nationally, last night’s Game 6 on NBCSN delivered a 1.88 overnight rating, which stands as NBCSN’s best overnight rating of the Conference Finals, and the second-best overnight rating of the 2015 postseason on NBCSN behind Game 7 of the Capitals-Rangers second-round series (2.30).

GAMES TELEVISED SO FAR

For the fourth consecutive year, NBC, NBCSN, USA Network, CNBC and NHL Network are combining to televise every Stanley Cup Playoff game nationally.

 

Network Games
NBC 12
NBCSN 50
USA Network 8
CNBC 10
NHL-N 1
Total 81

 

One-goal Games: 43

OT games: 19

 


COMPREHENSIVE LOCAL COVERAGE

Comprehensive coverage of the Stanley Cup Playoffs will be provided daily via NBC Sports Regional Networks, available in more than 50 million U.S. households. Comcast SportsNet Chicago will provide the hometown fans of the Chicago Blackhawks with comprehensive coverage throughout their Stanley Cup Playoff run, including pre- and post-game shows and extensive on-line coverage via Comcast SportsNet’s team of NHL Insiders.


NBC SPORTS LIVE EXTRA
COVERAGE

NBC Sports Live Extra – NBC Sports Group’s live streaming product for desktops, mobile devices, and tablets – will stream comprehensive coverage of games airing on NBC, NBCSN, USA Network and CNBC via “TV Everywhere,” giving consumers additional value to for their subscription service, and making high quality content available to MVPD customers both in and out of the home and on multiple platforms. The NBC Sports Live Extra app is available on the iTunes App Store, Google Play and Windows Store.

For more information about NBC Sports Group shows and properties, including press releases, photos, talent and executive bios and headshots, please visit NBCSportsGroupPressBox.com.

— NBC Sports Group —

NBC SPORTS GROUP SETS TV & STREAMING RECORDS FOR 2014-15 PREMIER LEAGUE COVERAGE IN SEASON OF INNOVATION

NBC Televised 3 of 4 Most-Watched Live Premier League Matches in U.S. History

Viewership Up 9% Over Prior Record Set Last Season; Adults 18-49 up 16%

Record 317 Million Minutes of Live Premier League Action Streamed on NBC Sports Live Extra For the Season

NBC Sports Group Debuted Multiple New Premier League-Focused TV, Digital & Radio Presentations; Presented Live On-Site Premier League Studio Coverage From U.K. & Super Bowl XLIX

Washington DC, New York, Columbus, Denver & Philadelphia Top Local Market Ratings for Full Season

STAMFORD, Conn. — May 28, 2015 – On the strength of numerous innovations and programming initiatives, NBC Sports Group’s comprehensive season-long coverage of the Premier League – which concluded last weekend with NBCUniversal’s simultaneous presentation of all 10 “Championship Sunday” matches across 10 different television networks – produced viewership and consumption milestones for the 2014-15 season.

Premier League viewership on NBC and NBCSN was up 9% from last season’s record-setting figures, while NBC Sports Live Extra saw 22% growth over last season’s record in live minutes streamed (full details below). In addition, NBC aired three of the four most-watched live Premier League matches in U.S. TV history this season.

NBC Sports Group’s 2014-15 Premier League programming featured all 380 matches presented live both on television (on the networks of NBCUniversal and the Premier League Extra Time bonus TV package; plus more than 120 matches on TELEMUNDO and NBCUNIVERSO) and with live streaming on NBC Sports Live Extra via TV Everywhere.

Throughout the season, NBC Sports Group rolled out a wide-range of innovations in its coverage, allowing viewers to enjoy the game in more ways and on more platforms than ever before.

Following is a chronological look at NBC Sports Group’s innovations this Premier League season:

  • “Tactical Cam”NBC Sports Live Extra’s high-sideline camera showing all 22 players on the pitch at the same time — enabling fans to see formations and evaluate each team’s attacking and defending tactics — was introduced for the Monday, Aug. 25, Manchester City-Liverpool match.
  • THE MEN IN BLAZERS SHOW – The weekly program featuring popular soccer personalities Michael Davies, Roger Bennett and guests from across the world of sports and entertainment debuted on NBCSN on Monday, Sept. 22. Among guests in the “Panic Room” this season: Indianapolis Colts quarterback Andrew Luck, Formula One champion Lewis Hamilton, actors Laura Carmichael and Dominic West, and Noel Gallagher and Vampire Weekend from the world of music.
  • The 2 Robbies “Football” Show — NBC Sports Radio’s weekly digital and terrestrial program starring NBC Sports Group analysts Robbie Earle and Robbie Mustoe premiered Saturday, Oct. 25. The show focused on the Premier League and international soccer, with commentary and analysis from Earle and Mustoe. The Robbies took calls, answered listener questions, and interviewed top names in the sport.
  • New Year’s Day Premier League Breakaway — A special two-hour show featuring RedZone-like live look-ins on the best action from all eight Premier League matches in the 10 a.m. ET window on Jan. 1. Rebecca Lowe guided the program as it cut from match to match, and was joined by analysts Kyle Martino and Robbie Mustoe. Premier League Breakaway also streamed live on NBC Sports Live Extra.
  • “Super” Premier League Weekend in Arizona – The Saturday, Jan. 31, and Sunday, Feb. 1, Premier League Live shows originated live, on-location from “Super Bowl Central,” NBC Sports Group’s primary home for studio programing during Super Bowl week in downtown Phoenix. Host Rebecca Lowe was also featured in a Premier League segment on NBC’s Super Bowl XLIX Pre-game Show on Feb. 1 (more info below).
  • “Road Trip” to U.K. — From April 11-13, for the first time since NBC Sports Group kicked off its Premier League coverage in August 2013, the entire Premier League team worked together on-location in the United Kingdom. Lowe and analysts Earle, Martino and Mustoe joined NBC’s U.K.-based team of Arlo White, Lee Dixon, Graeme Le Saux and Steve Bower for more than 18 hours of live on-site coverage. The presentation featured dual on-site studios for pre-match, halftime and post-game shows, including pitch-side locations for the first time in the history of Premier League coverage in the U.S.
  • Special Relegation Breakaway – On the season’s penultimate weekend, NBCSN presented a special Relegation Breakaway show at 10 a.m. ET on Saturday, May 16 featuring RedZone-like live look-ins on the best action from relegation-threatened 16th-place Sunderland v. 15th-place Leicester City, Tottenham v. 18th-place Hull City and Queens Park Rangers v. 17th-place Newcastle. Relegation Breakaway also streamed live on NBC Sports Live Extra.
  • Premier League DownloadAs a part of NBC’s continued effort to grow the game in the United States, Premier League Download both entertained and educated audiences by taking in-depth looks at some of the league’s biggest topics and themes. Episodes this season included: The Southampton Way a look into the state-of-the-art youth academy at Southampton hosted by Men in BlazersRoger Bennett, Behind the Whistle Arlo White and Graeme Le Saux’s unprecedented exploration into what it takes to be a Premier League referee, and The Goalkeeper’s Union Bennett’s interview of current Premier League goalkeepers to find out about the art, tactical ability and psychology of the game’s loneliest position.

Following is a look at NBC Sports Group’s metrics and milestones for the 2014-15 Premier League season:

Premier League Viewership Records

  • NBC and NBCSN combined to average a record 479,000 viewers – up 9% from the then-record 438,000 viewers in NBC Sports Group’s first season covering Premier League in 2013-14 and up 118% from the combined 2012-13 season average on ESPN, ESPN2 and FOX Soccer (220,000).
  • Among Adults 18-49, NBC and NBCSN averaged a record 280,000 viewers – up 16% from 2013-14 (241,000) and up 119% from the combined 2012-13 season average on ESPN, ESPN2 and FOX Soccer (128,000).
  • NBC aired 3 of the 4 most-watched live Premier League matches in U.S. TV history this season (chart below), including Manchester United-Arsenal on Saturday, Nov. 22, which averaged 1.41 million viewers to rank as the most-watched live Premier League match in U.S. history.
  • In just two years televising the Premier League, 12 of the 15 most-watched PL matches in U.S. TV history have aired on NBC and NBCSN, including seven during the 2014-15 season.
  • NBCSN has televised 4 of the 5 most-watched Premier League matches in U.S. cable history (chart below), including Manchester United-Manchester City on Sunday, April 12, which averaged 1.13 million viewers to rank as the most-watched Premier League match in U.S. cable television history.
  • On Super Bowl Sunday, Feb. 1, 6 million people tuned into the 2:30 p.m. ET half-hour of NBC’s Super Bowl XLIX Pre-game Show, which included Premier League host Rebecca Lowe on set with Football Night in America’s Dan Patrick and Tony Dungy at University of Phoenix Stadium. Lowe delivered a Premier League highlight segment, which included a look at the Chelsea-Manchester City match. Leading into Lowe’s segment was a special one-minute piece with the Men in Blazers’ Michael Davies and Roger Bennett choosing which NFL players they would recruit for their #MINIFFC soccer roster with MINI USA.
  • NBCSN’s Liverpool-Manchester United match on Sunday, March 22 averaged 950,000 viewers to rank as the most-watched early morning (before 10 a.m. ET) Premier League match in U.S. television history.
  • NBC’s Arsenal-Crystal Palace match on Saturday, Aug. 16 averaged 885,000 viewers, ranking as the most-watched opening weekend match in U.S. history.

Premier League Streaming Milestones

  • Viewers consumed a record total of 317 million minutes of live Premier League action via NBC Sports Live Extra during the 2014-15 season – up 22% from last season.
  • Coverage on Wednesday, March 4, set a single-day Premier League live-streaming record for minutes NBC Sports Live Extra (7.7 million) and included seven matches.
  • Chelsea’s 1-0 win against Manchester United on Saturday, April 18, ranks as the most-streamed weekend PL match in history, with more than 85,000 uniques on NBC Sports Live Extra.

Most-Watched Live Premier League Matches in U.S. History

Following are the 15 most-watched live Premier League matches in U.S. television history:

Date Match Network Viewers
11/22/2014 Man United-Arsenal NBC 1.41 million
2/5/2012 Chelsea-Man United FOX 1.38 million
1/31/2015 Chelsea-Man City NBC 1.35 million
10/26/2014 Man United-Chelsea NBC 1.29 million
1/22/2012 Man United-Arsenal FOX 1.26 million
2/8/2014 Cardiff-Swansea City NBC 1.24 million
4/12/2015 Man United-Man City NBCSN 1.13 million
1/11/2014 Man United-Swansea City NBC 1.10 million
2/22/2014 Crystal Palace-Man United NBC 1.06 million
4/30/2012 Man City-Man United ESPN 1.03 million
1/19/2014 Chelsea-Man United NBCSN 1.02 million
4/18/2015 Chelsea-Man United NBC 1.01 million
11/2/2013 Arsenal-Liverpool NBC 991,000
4/26/2015 Arsenal-Chelsea NBCSN 979,000
8/30/2014 Everton-Chelsea NBC 960,000

Following are the five most-watched live Premier League matches in U.S. cable history:Most-Viewed Premier League Matches on Cable in U.S. History

Date Match Network Viewers
4/12/2015 Manchester United-Manchester City NBCSN 1.13 million
4/30/2012 Manchester City-Manchester United ESPN 1.03 million
1/19/2014 Chelsea-Manchester United NBCSN 1.02 million
4/26/2015 Arsenal-Chelsea NBCSN 979,000
3/22/2015 Liverpool-Manchester United NBCSN 950,000

Following are the U.S. TV markets with the highest average season-long ratings on NBCSN and NBC combined, and NBC only (note: all NBC games, other than on “Championship Sunday,” started at 12:30 pm ET/9:30 am PT or later, while some NBCSN games kicked off as early as 7 am ET/4 am PT): Local TV Ratings

Top 15 Local Market Ratings, NBC & NBCSN combined

1. Washington, D.C. 9. Knoxville
2. New York 10. Indianapolis
3. Columbus, OH 11. Dallas
4. Denver 12. Providence
5. Philadelphia 13. Seattle
6. Miami 14. Albuquerque
7. West Palm Beach 15. Sacramento
8. Boston

Top 15 Local Market Ratings, NBC only

1. Seattle 9. Denver
2. Louisville 10. Richmond
3. Knoxville 11. New York
4. Washington, D.C. 12. Portland
5. Columbus, OH 13. Boston
6. West Palm Beach 14. Nashville
7. Sacramento 15. Greensboro
8. Buffalo

The 2015-16 Premier League season kicks off on Saturday, August 8.

For more information about NBC Sports Group shows and properties, including press releases, photos, talent and executive bios and headshots, please visit NBCSportsGroupPressBox.com (http://nbcsportsgrouppressbox.com)

–NBC SPORTS GROUP–