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WWE Says Halftime Heat A Success After Long Absence

“The event streamed live from the WWE Performance Center in Orlando, Florida, on Youtube, Facebook Live, Twitter and the WWE Network.”

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While millions tuned into the Super Bowl’s halftime show Sunday, the WWE saw an opportunity to revive a fan favorite idea to showcase the future of sports entertainment.

The WWE presented Halftime Heat for the first time in nearly 20 years with a six-man tag match featuring NXT’s brightest stars as Ricochet, Aleister Black and Velveteen Dream were victorious over Adam Cole, NXT North American Champion Johnny Gargano and NXT Champion Tomasso Ciampa.

The event streamed live from the WWE Performance Center in Orlando, Florida, on Youtube, Facebook Live, Twitter and the WWE Network. Excluding the WWE Network, the other streaming options brought in just under 90,000 viewers. Network numbers would understandably help that number drastically, though they are not yet available.

WWE executive Paul “Triple H” Levesque fostered the idea to bring back the event and ran it by Chairman and CEO Vince McMahon who embraced it and set it in motion.

“Vince is focused on showcasing the future, and he pushed to make this happen,” Triple H told Sports Illustrated. “He was the most supportive one. This is a big opportunity to go out, in essence, and perform in front of the world.”

The first Halftime Heat was in 1999 and featured The Rock defending his then WWF Championship against Mankind in an Empty Arena Match. That event drew an astounding 6.6 rating as Mankind won his second WWF Championship. The following year didn’t take advantage of the previous year’s success, showing highlights from the 2000 Royal Rumble event and an interview with the injured Stone Cold Steve Austin. Halftime Heat wouldn’t return again until last Sunday.

Triple H said the WWE was open to Halftime Heat sticking around in the future.

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NASCAR Driver Denny Hamlin Launching Podcast with Dale Earnhardt Jr & Dirty Mo Media

“New episodes will be published each Monday during the NASCAR season with previews and reviews of races, with the goal of inviting guests and interacting with fans playing a future role in the series.”

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Dale Earnhardt Jr.’s Dirty Mo Media has announced a podcast deal with NASCAR driver Denny Hamlin.

Hamlin will host Actions Detrimental with Denny Hamlin on a weekly basis during the NASCAR season. The Actions Detrimental branding is verbiage used by NASCAR for fines assessed to drivers for their disparaging comments about the sport. Known as one of NASCAR’s more outspoken drivers, Hamlin has been fined several times under the “actions detrimental to stock car racing” statutes.

New episodes will be published each Monday during the NASCAR season with previews and reviews of races, with the goal of inviting guests and interacting with fans playing a future role in the series.

Denny Hamlin jokingly thanked Dirty Mo Media for the “opportunity and the fat check” the company wrote for him to host the podcast in a Twitter announcement.

The 42-year-old Hamlin has won 48 races during his 18-year NASCAR Cup Series career. In addition to serving as a driver for Joe Gibbs Racing, he co-owns 23XI Racing with basketball legend Michael Jordan.

The podcast is the latest in an expansion of content produced by the Mooresville, North Carolina-based digital outlet. After beginning with The Dale Jr. Download, the company has grown to include other podcasts like Door, Bumper, Clear, and Speed Street, as well as video projects like The Next Level.

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Barstool Sports CEO: Golf Likely Next Step For Company’s Live Broadcasts

“I think we‘ll start with the biggest sports that we know and love.”

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Barstool Sports CEO Erika Nardini recently did a wide-ranging interview with AdAge.com about the future of the digital sports outlet’s television aspirations, and she said sports they’re familiar with will take priority.

“”We want sports that appeal to a broad audience. We’re kind of tickled to be able to broadcast things in the first place. So I think we‘ll start with the biggest sports that we know and love, whether it’s basketball and football,” Nardini said. “You could definitely see that extended to golf, that would probably be the next place that we’ll play.”

The questions about Barstool’s future aspirations come after the company’s successful first broadcast of the Barstool Sports Arizona Bowl. Barstool says the broadcast received nearly 1 million views, peaking at 130,000 concurrent viewers. The outlet also broadcasted the Barstool Sports Invitational that featured Akron, Mississippi State, Toledo, and UAB in November.

Nardini added that the company is interested live televised sports for a few reasons.

“We’re owned by a sports betting company and the more we think about building our sports platform, there’s obviously a huge opportunity for us to convey a whole bunch of offerings to our audience, but certainly betting will be one of them…I think that live sports on television is the last man standing where it’s all anyone tunes in for.”

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Fanatics to Open First Sportsbook Inside FedEx Field

“The location at the home of the Washington Commanders will make it the first sportsbook to open inside an NFL stadium.”

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Sports licensing giant Fanatics will soon be launching its long-anticipated sportsbook.

The company will open up a physical sportsbook location in Maryland at FedEx Field on January 20. Fanatics has also been granted a license to operate in Massachusetts, tethered to Plainridge Park Casino.

The location at the home of the Washington Commanders will make it the first sportsbook to open inside an NFL stadium. Bettors in the DMV will now be able to place wagers at all their local teams’ venues, as William Hill has an on-site location at Capital One Arena – home of the Capitals and Wizards – and BetMGM has a space at Nationals Park in D.C.

Despite having a physical location at FedEx Field, bettors in Maryland will not be able to place mobile wagers through a Fanatics Sportsbook app.

According to Front Office Sports, Fanatics hopes to have the sportsbook up and running in some fashion in all states where legal by September.

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