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CBS Sports Launches New Streaming Service

Brandon Contes

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In 2014 CBS launched a 24/7 streaming news service, CBSN. Following the successful model of CBSN, which generated 287 million streams in 2017, CBS Sports has added its own 24-hour sports streaming service, CBS Sports HQ this week.

Like CBSN, CBS Sports HQ is available to consumers for free via online connected devices, including smartphones, tablets, smart TVs, Amazon Fire TV, Apple TV and Roku. No cable subscription will be necessary to access the 24/7 sports network which will offer coverage of news and highlights.

“CBS SPORTS HQ is for fans who want more coverage of the game. Sports fans can now get the news and highlights they want in a true, round-the-clock sportscast on any device, where and when they want,” said Jim Lanzone, CEO, CBS Interactive and Chief Digital Officer, CBS Corporation. “As with CBSN, which continues to attract a growing audience of digital consumers, we also think there’s a tremendous advantage in being first to market with this type of service in a crown jewel category.”

The network will utilize CBS Sports, CBSSports.com, 247Sports, SportsLine, CBS Sports Fantasy and MaxPreps to provide live news, game previews, post-game reports, highlights, stats and analysis.

The ability to stream quality 24-hour sports coverage for free with no cable subscription will attract a younger demographic that watches programming online. Paid for through advertising, CBS Sports HQ will include DVR functionality allowing the viewer to jump segments.

ESPN is expected to launch their streaming platform in late March or early April, Disney CEO Bob Iger spoke of the ESPN Plus OTT service at the Morgan Stanley Technology, Media & Telecom Conference as reported by Deadline’s Dade Hayes.

Unlike the new CBS Sports platform, ESPN Plus will not be free, but it will offer live sports content. At $4.99 per month, Iger said “I imagine you’ll see that price rise for the augmented service.”  ESPN Plus will sell out-of-market packages for Major League Baseball and the NHL.

Although neither the CBS Sports service, nor ESPN Plus is designed to threaten TV viewership, Iger sees the future of sports consumption in the ESPN Plus service, stating “Over time, our intention would be for that app to be the app that people experience ESPN on.”

Brandon Contes is a freelance writer for BSM. He can be found on Twitter @BrandonContes. To reach him by email click here.

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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