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John Skipper: The NFL Will Put A Super Bowl On Pay-Per-View

“The NFL declined to comment on the prediction, but Joe Hand Jr of Joe Hand Promotions, a firm specializing in pay-per-view events for bars and restaurants, told Front Office Sports that a pay-per-view Super Bowl could easily shatter the record for the most viewed and ordered event in the space’s history.”

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There have been shortage of bold predictions when it comes to the future of sports media. Last week, Meadowlark Media boss John Skipper told The Dan Le Batard Show that he expects one of the biggest events on the industry’s calendar to experience a major sea change in the near future.

The former President of ESPN predicts that the NFL will move the Super Bowl to pay-per-view in the future. The NFL declined to comment on the prediction, but Joe Hand Jr of Joe Hand Promotions, a firm specializing in pay-per-view events for bars and restaurants, told Front Office Sports that a pay-per-view Super Bowl could easily shatter the record for the most viewed and ordered event in the space’s history.

Floyd Mayweather vs. Manny Pacquiao currently occupies that spot. The 2015 fight drew 4.6 million buys and generated $600 million.

Hand predicts that a Super Bowl on pay-per-view could command a $200 price tag. That certainly would be in line with Skipper’s reasoning that such a move could take place, which would be to “to replace the money someday.”

When will that day come? It won’t be for more than a decade. In its new round of TV contracts, signed last year, the NFL announced Super Bowl TV partners through 2034.

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Alex Rodriguez: You Used To Be Able To Hang Out With Reporters And Know It Was Off the Record

“I would say that back then it was a little bit more of a camaraderie.”

Jordan Bondurant

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The way that MLB players interact with reporters has evolved and changed significantly over the years in Alex Rodriguez’s eyes.

In a media availability Tuesday ahead of the season premiere of the KayRod Cast, ESPN’s alternate feed of select games slated for Sunday Night Baseball featuring Rodriguez and Yankees play-by-play man Michael Kay, A-Rod was asked for his biggest surprises as the media coverage has transitioned over the years.

“I would say that back then it was a little bit more of a camaraderie,” Rodriguez said. “You could actually go to a bar and have drinks with reporters, believe it or not, and talk about, you know — and everything was pretty much off the record.”

In today’s game, Rodriguez said you won’t find it being the case where reporters and players are friends away from their respective jobs.

“That ship has left, right? I think it’s just a lot more Twitter, get out there first. Fact check later, but shoot first,” he said. “As a result, I think it’s made players and everybody a little bit more aware.”

“I think in a long-worded answer, I think relationships that go back many years, I think, win in the long run, that trust,” A-Rod added.

The second season of the KayRod Cast starts on Sunday at 7 p.m. featuring the defending N.L. champion Philadelphia Phillies and the Texas Rangers.

Kay and Rodriguez will be live from ESPN’s Seaport District Studios in New York City. There are eight total editions of the KayRod Cast scheduled for the 2023 season.

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Elite 8 Sees Ratings Drop

“Much of the pandemonium, given the number of upsets in this year’s tournament, unsurprisingly impacted viewership as things advanced.”

Jordan Bondurant

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With the last two number one seeds bowing out of the 2023 NCAA tournament by the end of the Sweet 16, viewership for the Elite 8 expectedly dropped.

Over 11 million tuned in for the Miami/Texas regional final on CBS. Viewership for the two versus four seed matchup was down 17% compared to the Elite 8 game in the same window last year (UNC/Saint Peter’s). The broadcast was also the lowest rated and least-watched Elite 8 game in that window in seven years.

San Diego State/Creighton in the early game on Sunday drew 8.34 million viewers, which was down 12% year over year.

Almost 8 million watched UConn cruise past Gonzaga on TBS late Saturday night, while Florida Atlantic’s historic upset over Kansas State had a little more than 7 million watch. The Owls’ win over the Wildcats was only down 1% when looking at the numbers from the same window in 2022 (Villanova/Houston).

Much of the pandemonium, given the number of upsets in this year’s tournament, unsurprisingly impacted viewership as things advanced.

But the Final Four and the national championship are often the three most-watched college basketball games of the year, so there should be no shortage of eyeballs glued to Houston this weekend.

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Hawk Harrelson: ‘I Didn’t Retire, I Got Retired’

“I got fired is what it all boils down to.”

Jordan Bondurant

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Former Chicago White Sox broadcaster Hawk Harrelson opened up about his departure from the team in 2018. In an appearance Tuesday on the Foul Territory podcast, Harrelson said his whole farewell that season was forced.

“I didn’t retire,” Harrelson said talking to former White Sox catcher AJ Pierzynski and co-host Scott Braun. “I got retired.”

“I got fired is what it all boils down to,” he added.

Harrelson, who was the 2020 Ford C. Frick Award winner given by the Baseball Hall of Fame, said he stand behind the claim that he was shown the door.

“I’m sure that they will deny that. But it’s what led up to that and everything else, that’s interesting,” Harrelson said.

The White Sox hired Jason Benetti in 2016 as Harrelson’s fill-in. Benetti continues to call games on NBC Sports Chicago full-time.

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