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The Athletic Enters 6 New Markets, Expands in 4

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Monday was a busy day for The Athletic. The company announced six new local sites. It also announced that four of its established sites will expand coverage of their markets.

The new sites will cover Nashville, Indianapolis, New Orleans, the Carolinas, Miami, and Washington, D.C. The first five sites are online now. The DC site won’t launch until next month. The Athletic also has expanded coverage in Tampa, Minnesota, Cincinnati and Wisconsin.

The Tampa Bay area site has added former Tampa Bay Times writer Greg Auman to cover the Buccaneers.


The Nashville site has added Travis Haney, formerly of ESPN, to cover the Titans.


Haney is an interesting addition because this will be his first NFL assignment. At ESPN he covered the national college football beat. His other team-specific beat jobs have included the Atlanta Braves, South Carolina Gamecocks, and Oklahoma Sooners.

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Jimmy Johnson to Dan Le Batard: Do You Ever Remember Be “Sniveling”

Johnson also said, “I don’t know that I’ve ever sniveled. Do you ever remember me sniveling? No way.”

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Jimmy Johnson

Jimmy Johnson doesn’t seem to be too worried that he isn’t in the Dallas Cowboys’ Ring Of Honor. He actually is more confused about the word choice that Cowboys’ owner Jerry Jones used to describe him.

Jones was interviewed earlier this week by NBC 5’s Newy Scruggs, and was asked about the timeline for honoring the team’s former coach. Jones replied snarkily with, “There’s a lot more than Jimmy to think about here.”

Jones then added, “I’ve got a lot of other lives out here that have laid a lot on the line on the field that need to be in that Ring of Honor as well… it isn’t at the end of the day all tailored around whether Jimmy is sniveling or not.”

Dan Le Batard had the FOX NFL Sunday analyst on his podcast and read the entire quote to Johnson. When finished, Johnson responded thru his laughter, “I had to look up that word in the dictionary,” Johnson said.

Johnson also said, “I don’t know that I’ve ever sniveled. Do you ever remember me sniveling? No way.”

Le Batard responded, “it is not a word I would ever associate with you.”

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Taylor Rooks Hired by Amazon as Thursday Night Football Feature Reporter

Rooks will host feature stories surrounding the league and its Thursday games as well as conduct sit-down style interviews with NFL players and coaches throughout the season.

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Taylor Rooks

Amazon has confirmed that Taylor Rooks has been brought on as a feature reporter for their Thursday Night Football streaming package of NFL games.

Rooks will host feature stories surrounding the league and its Thursday games as well as conduct sit-down style interviews with NFL players and coaches throughout the season.

“Taylor Rooks is an incredibly talented journalist, who has already established herself as one of the best interviewers in sports,” said Marie Donoghue, Vice President, Global Sports Video for Amazon. “We look forward to bringing her engaging and illuminating conversations to our Thursday Night Football coverage.”

Rooks tweeted her excitement but also added that she will not be taking a step back from her efforts with Bleacher Report and NBA on TNT.

In fact, Boardroom is reporting that she has signed a multi-year extension to stay with Turner Sports.

“Taylor is a versatile talent with an innate skill to conduct engaging, authentic and entertaining conversations with some of the biggest personalities in sports,” noted Tara August, Senior Vice President of Talent Services & Special Projects at Turner. “No matter the sport, Taylor can connect and tap into the humanity of the individual off the court or field in a way that resonates with audiences and we’re excited to watch her grow.” 

Rooks joins the streaming service’s smorgasbord of talent which includes: play-by-play announcer Al Michaels, color analyst Kirk Herbstreit, sideline reporter Kaylee Hartung, studio host Charissa Thompson and analysts Tony Gonzalez, Richard Sherman, Ryan Fitzpatrick, Aqib Talib and Andrew Whitworth. 

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Michael Kay: Vin Scully Was ‘A Gift From The Gods’

“No one can come close to his talent and his ability to communicate so easily with his audience.”

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As sports media figures continue to mourn the passing of Vin Scully, Yankees television play-by-play announcer Michael Kay penned a special op-ed to Scully in The New York Post.

Kay noted the sheer length of Scully’s career — pointing out he announced games for Jackie Robinson and Gil Hodges just as he did for Clayton Kershaw — and how his style “transcended generations”.

“If you listen to how some called a game in the 50s, you can question if they would even be hired by today’s execs or, more importantly, accepted by today’s audience,” Kay said. “Scully was just as good and relevant in 2016 as he was in 1950. There is an incredible genius to that accomplishment.”

The two baseball broadcasters both graduated from Fordham University, which Kay said bonded them after they were introduced to one another in 1999 by Scully’s friend Keith Olbermann.

Kay also echoed a sentiment shared by many the day following Scully’s passing: that he was the greatest sports broadcaster of all time.

“In an era of hot takes where debate shows argue about the greatest this and the greatest that, there is no debate that Scully is simply the greatest sports broadcaster who ever lived,” Kay definitively said. “No one can come close to his talent and his ability to communicate so easily with his audience.”

He later added Scully’s ability “was a gift from the Gods. A lovely, soft, easy voice and a disarming manner that made him sound like a friend and not an authority figure giving you the score.”

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