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No Resolution In Sight For NESN, YouTube TV Dispute

“NESN isn’t alone. The decision to remove the New England Sports Network from its offering came one month after YouTube TV dropped 19 FOX RSNs owned by Sinclair.”

Brandon Contes

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YouTube TV is one of the best live streaming television services available, but unfortunately for Red Sox fans, the platform is unlikely to reach a deal with NESN in time for the Major League Baseball season. 

YouTube TV dropped NESN on Oct. 31, 2020. As the regional sports network is home of the Bruins and Red Sox, there was some hope of reaching a new partnership for the start of the NHL season in January, but to no avail. And with the baseball season looming, a resolution between both sides remains unlikely according to a recent report by Chad Finn of the Boston Globe

NESN isn’t alone. The decision to remove the New England Sports Network from its offering came one month after YouTube TV dropped 19 FOX RSNs owned by Sinclair. When NESN was dropped in October, the Boston RSN tweeted that the move by YouTube TV was “purely an economic decision to maximize profitability for their business at the expense of viewers.”

Before cutting RSNs, YouTube TV hiked their monthly subscription cost from $49.99 to $64.99 after the addition of the ViacomCBS bundle of channels. Those channels include TBS, CNN and MLB Network which have national appeal. But a subscription platform paying in the realm of $5 a month for a singular regional sports network with little national appeal doesn’t make much economic sense.  

Last month, YouTube TV began to integrate MLB.TV on its platform. Unfortunately for baseball fans, MLB.TV only gives them the ability to stream out of market games. Despite the need for Major League Baseball to reach a younger audience who might not be using linear television, their seemingly outdated local blackout restrictions continue to make it difficult for fans to livestream local teams. 

Sports TV News

Mike Francesa on First Take: ‘I Wish Tom Brady Would Have Picked Another Day’

“It’s a special day! It’s a special day at First Take! Look at the crew I have in front of me.”

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Wednesday was bound to be one of the biggest in the history of First Take. Not only was Mike Francesa scheduled to join the show for a Mike & The Mad Dog reunion, but before the show even went on the air, Tom Brady announced his retirement. It made all the sense in the world that the show went thirty minutes before taking a break.

“It’s a special day! It’s a special day at First Take! Look at the crew I have in front of me,” Molly Qerim said as she introduced the panel that included Francesa alongside the regular Wednesday cast of Stephen A. Smith and Chris “Mad Dog” Russo.

Before the debates began though, Adam Schefter joined the show to discuss Brady’s retirement. The New York native told Qerim that it was hard not to notice the history on the set.

“You’re in the company of royalty, Molly,” he said. “Stephen A, the greatest ever to do it on TV. Two of the guys that are the founding fathers of sports radio.”

“I wish Brady would have picked another day,” Francesa joked. 

While discussion of what Tom Brady meant to the NFL and the American sports landscape in general dominated the discussion, there was plenty of time for ribbing and reflection. Stephen A. Smith acknowledged what a fan he was of Mike & The Mad Dog when the show aired on WFAN. He called it an honor to be on with Francesa and Russo.

After spending the majority of the top segment talking about Brady, the show opened its second segment talking about the history of Mike & The Mad Dog. The show came back from commercial with a montage from the 30 for 30 film about the duo. It featured clips from their history and colleagues talking about their influence on New York and the sports talk format.

“I feel like I’m at my funeral,” Mike Francesa joked after the video.

Russo acknowledged that what people were seeing on the screen wasn’t always possible. Whether he was talking about what happened on air or behind the scenes, he acknowledged that there was a time when the two of them wouldn’t be able to get through a walk down memory lane.

“We don’t fight as much as we used to. Mike and I one time spent hours killing each other about who had the best bathroom facility between the Yankees or the Giants.” 

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Sports TV News

Tom Brady Announces Retirement, Doesn’t Mention FOX Plans

“While it didn’t take that long to announce he was hanging up his cleats, Brady still may need time to decide what he is actually doing next season.”

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You have to give Tom Brady credit. He announced his retirement from the NFL on Wednesday morning, and while he swears this is really it, he also acknowledges that he has to keep things simple this time around.

“I’m retiring, for good,” he said in a video posted on social media. “I know the process was a pretty big deal last time, so when I woke up this morning I figured I’d just press record and let you guys know first. I won’t be long-winded. You only get one super emotional retirement essay and I used mine up last year.”

This announcement comes a year to the day that Tom Brady announced his first retirement. That one lasted just 40 days before the Buccaneers’ quarterback announced that he had changed his mind and would play the 2022 season.

Brady swears his playing days really are over. He ended the video with a message to his family, friends, teammates and opponents.

“Thank you guys for letting me live my absolute dream. I wouldn’t change a thing.”

Two weeks ago, Jordan Schultz reported that Brady planned to take a month before deciding on his future. While it didn’t take that long to announce he was hanging up his cleats, Brady still may need time to decide what he is actually doing next season.

Tom Brady did not mention FOX in his retirement announcement. The network gave him a ten-year contract worth $375 million to serve as a brand ambassador and analyst in its top NFL booth. It has widely been reported that the deal is a standing offer. Brady may not be obligated to start right away.

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Sports TV News

Peacock Announces 19 Game 2023 Baseball Schedule

“It all starts on April 23 at 12:05 p.m. as the Colorado Rockies take on the defending N.L. champion Philadelphia Phillies.”

Jordan Bondurant

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MLB games are returning to Peacock in 2023. NBC announced its full schedule of Sunday matinee games on Tuesday.

It all starts on April 23 at 12:05 p.m. as the Colorado Rockies take on the defending N.L. champion Philadelphia Phillies.

Peacock will carry all 19 games this year. The game on May 7, an 11:35 a.m. first pitch, features the Baltimore Orioles and the Atlanta Braves and will also be simulcast on NBC.

As was the case for the first year of this deal in 2022, the Peacock games will be the only MLB action until 1:35 p.m.

Games will air on Peacock through September 3. NBC has not announced its broadcast team for these games.

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