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Pablo Torre Explains Goals of Future Meadowlark Media Project

“I want to take the position of also being able to zoom way in and way out and engage with the news cycle, but not be beholden to it.”

Ricky Keeler

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While we know that Pablo Torre is going to have a new show with Meadowlark Media in the future, he hasn’t exactly been specific as to what it will be. We continue to look for bits and pieces from Torre about his show that will begin sometime before the NFL season begins. 

Torre was a guest on The Rights To Ricky Sanchez: The Sixers Podcast with Spike Eskin and Michael Levin (around the 22 minute mark) and he said that he is at Meadowlark to follow his curiosities and he thinks back to the story he wrote for ESPN The Magazine in 2015 about the 76ers and trust the process serves as a guide to him.

I have things I am obsessed with that I want to explain to people, and I believe there are stories in sports and in the national cultural conversation that either could use a little more smarts or a little more humor and I want to figure out how I can be the place where you find smart and funny when it comes to storytelling in sports in a narratively informed way. I’m being very vague about it, but the magazine sensibility of that process story is something that serves as a North Star in my brain.

“How do I tell a story that people from afar are maybe somewhat familiar with, but can get under the hood of to articulate and reveal and report some things that serve as something close to a definitive treatment to it?”

One thing that Torre thinks is a big opportunity in the media landscape is that there is an open lane to tell sports stories in the audio format. 

“There’s a lot of narrative series, some of which are excellent, but in terms of an always-on show where someone’s job is to follow a curiosity down the rabbit hole and/or tell a story/interviewing a person as a way of explaining something larger. I want to bring a viewpoint that because sports is so much about living or dying with these games as we have been, I want to take the position of also being able to zoom way in and way out and engage with the news cycle, but not be beholden to it.”

Torre isn’t going to be able to cover everything in sports, but he said that he wants to take a complicated story and make it simpler for the listeners.

“My goal is not that I’m going to cover everything, but I’m going to give you stories of a different genre, stories that explain and go deeper. I want to make this fun, but also premised on contextualizing complicated stories in a simpler way.”

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Dave Portnoy: I Trust Penn Entertainment as Much as Ever

“Dave Portnoy is still an employee of Penn Entertainment. However, he has said publicly that he is unsure if the arrangement will continue after his contract expires in 2025.”

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Dave Portnoy may have had some public disagreements with Penn Entertainment, but he says that he still trusts the company to run Barstool. He took to Twitter earlier this week to dispel the myth that he is in a feud with the company.

“By the way everything I say or do nowadays is construed as me having beef with @PENNEntertain I 100% do not. Most of my net worth is still tied to $penn. The corporate woke overlord narrative is bullshit. They woulda never bought us in 1st place if that was true. I trust them now as much as when they bought us.”

Portnoy has not been shy about criticizing the company’s decision to fire Ben Mintz after Mintz said the n-word while reading rap lyrics. Several supporters, including Dana White, noted that it is the kind of decision that only happens when corporations take over creative enterprises.

Earlier this week, Dave Portnoy announced that he had hired Ben Mintz as the first employee of Brick Watch Company. Mintz was emotional in making the announcement. The decision was not made to stick it to Penn Entertainment according to Portnoy. 

Penn first acquired a stake in Barstool in 2020. It invested $163 million at that time for a 36% stake. Earlier this year, it completed its acquisition, investing an addition $388 million for the remaining 62% of the company.

Dave Portnoy is still an employee of Penn Entertainment. However, he has said publicly that he is unsure if the arrangement will continue after his contract expires in 2025.

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Multiple State Regulators Push Back on Effort to Legalize Gambling on WWE

“In March, Alex Sherman of CNBC reported that WWE had meetings with regulators in Colorado and Michigan.”

Jordan Bondurant

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Despite speculation over allowing sports bettors to wager on WWE, there doesn’t appear to be much support at the state level to add it to sportsbook offerings.

Earlier this year, WWE officials had discussions with accounting firm Ernst and Young to secure pre-determined match outcomes in order to allow betting on events. But many states where sports betting is legal have restrictions on wagering on scripted events.

In March, Alex Sherman of CNBC reported that WWE had meetings with regulators in Colorado and Michigan.

“The Colorado Division of Gaming is not currently and has not considered allowing sports betting wagers on WWE matches. By statute, wagers on events with fixed or predicted outcomes or purely by chance are strictly prohibited in Colorado; this includes wagers on the Academy Awards,” Shannon Gray of the Colorado Division of Gaming told Sports Betting Dime.

In Ohio, the same rules apply. The Ohio Casino Control Commission has not fielded any requests to add WWE. Officials in Kansas haven’t received requests either by their residents.

Elsewhere, Maryland sees keeping WWE out of betting offerings as a way to keep the integrity of legal sports betting.

“Maryland’s sports wagering law and regulations prohibit forms of wagering that are contrary to public interest or unfair to bettors,” Seth Elkin of the Maryland Lottery and Gaming Control Agency added. “We’ve determined that it is unfair to bettors and therefore not in the public’s interest to accept wagers on sports entertainment events that have scripted or predetermined outcomes, like professional wrestling.”

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Former Twitter Sports Boss TJ Adeshola Joins Arctos Partners

“We’ve been fortunate to have TJ as an Operating Advisor for the past three years, and we are thrilled to have him play a larger role as an Operating Partner.”

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Less than two months after TJ Adeshola announced his exit from Twitter, he has resurfaced. Arctos Partners, a firm that he had been advising, named Adeshola an operating partner on Thursday.

In the new role, Adeshola will be much more hands-on with the firm, a private investment company that focuses its investments in the sports world. The firm says it focuses on unlocking “non-obvious opportunities long before others have noticed the market need or opportunity”.

TJ Adeshola’s digital sports marketing expertise will certainly come in handy with that.

“We believe TJ is an innovator in emerging digital and sports media trends, and his wealth of knowledge is a tremendous resource for our Arctos Operating Platform, the value-added capabilities we provide to our franchise partners,” Arctos’s Jordan Solomon said in a press release. “We’ve been fortunate to have TJ as an Operating Advisor for the past three years, and we are thrilled to have him play a larger role as an Operating Partner.”

During his decade with Twitter, Adeshola served as the Head of U.S. Sports Partnerships. His title was Head of Global Content Partnerships at the time of his exit.

He is credited with securing broad strategic partnerships with the NBA, NFL, NHL, MLB and MLS as well as NASCAR, esports, college, and high school sports. He helped the platform grow the engagement and audience for those entities.

“I’m thrilled to expand my role with Arctos as an Operating Partner,” Adeshola added. “As the first investment firm to invest across multiple North American sports leagues, Arctos is an innovator and disruptor in the sports landscape. And true to form, the Arctos team recognizes the power of digital media as a tool for growth and an opportunity to drive value for its franchise partners.”

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