Busy is an understatement for the week of broadcasting Joe Buck is about to endure. Seven broadcasts in seven days for Buck on FOX, including three NFL games and four World Series contests.
Not to minimize regional baseball broadcasters who can go a month without getting a day off during the regular season, but the seven major sporting events Buck will be calling next week as he criss-crosses the country further validates his elite play-by-play status.
Just a few months ago, Buck and other broadcasters were craving live sports during the COVID-19 induced shutdown. To stay sharp, Buck even offered to provide play-by-play of anything, or almost anything, he drew the line at NSFW videos. Seven months later, he has three NFL matchups and four World Series games to attend in the span of one week.
Tampa to Buffalo to Arlington to Philly and back to Arlington is Buck’s travel schedule as he begins Sunday with America’s Game of the Week, calling the highly anticipated matchup between Tom Brady and Aaron Rodgers. On Monday, Buck and Aikman are back at it 24 hours later, calling the Chiefs-Bills game at 5pm ET.
Tuesday and Wednesday will see Buck call Games 1 and 2 of the World Series in Arlington. Thursday night is back to the NFL as the Giants play the Eagles in Philly. Friday and Saturday will see the World Series resume from Arlington for Games 3 and 4.
It’s an impressive two-sport week for Buck, who was recently announced as the 2020 Pete Rozelle Award recipient, earning him a spot in Canton’s Pro Football Hall of Fame. Equally impressive was 2012, when Buck had a two-sport day, calling an NFL game between the New York Giants and San Francisco 49ers at 4:25pm, then moving across town for Game 1 of the NLCS between the St. Louis Cardinals and San Francisco Giants.
NFL Ratings on CBS Off to Best Start Since 2010
That number buoys the network to an average of 18.559 million viewers over the first four games of the season.
The NFL of CBS is behemoth to start the 2022 season. This past weekend saw the more massive ratings for the network.
Sunday’s national game window, which was led the Patriots-Packers overtime game, averaged 24.647 million viewers which was the most-watched Week 4 window on CBS since 1998, when the NFL returned to CBS. It’s also a ratings increase of 8% from last season.
That number buoys the network to an average of 18.559 million viewers over the first four games of the season, CBS‘ best start to a season since 2010.
ESPN Asked NHL For More Games on Linear TV
“It’s something that ESPN pushed for. But to the extent that ESPN was looking to make an adjustment for Year 2, we’re pleased to have the ongoing exposure.”
The 2021-2022 NHL season was the first of a new media rights deal that saw the league’s games air nationally on ESPN and TNT.
The 2022-2023 season will see more games on linear television, and NHL Commissioner Gary Bettman says that’s from ESPN’s insistence.
When asked by Sports Business Journal‘s Alex Silverman about a noticeably larger linear television schedule for the upcoming season, Bettman said “We’re happy to have it, but it’s something that ESPN pushed for. But to the extent that ESPN was looking to make an adjustment for Year 2, we’re pleased to have the ongoing exposure. Although, last year and the way things were balanced was a terrific year for us. Ratings were up, viewership was up, connectivity on all platforms for our fans was up. And ESPN and Turner have done an incredible job, and we’re grateful to be with them.”
Last season, ESPN and ABC only aired 28 games on linear television, 18 airing on ESPN or ESPN2 and 10 on ABC. 75 regular season games were exclusive to ESPN+ and Hulu.
This year, 52 games will air between the two networks with 37 games on ESPN or ESPN2 and 15 games on ABC. The Walt Disney Company has exclusive rights to 103 NHL broadcasts during the 2022-2023 season, including the opening night double header, the All-Star Skills Competition and All-Star Game, and the NHL Stadium Series.
FOX Ends MLB Regular Season Coverage With Highest Audience of Season
FOX reeled in 2,657,000 viewers for its two game slate (Rays-Astros or Mets-Braves).
FOX’s regular season coverage of MLB ended so strongly that it featured the best Saturday night baseball telecast on the network all season.
FOX reeled in 2,657,000 viewers for its two game slate (Rays-Astros or Mets-Braves). The Mets-Braves series was a battle of two teams trying to win the National League East division.