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Philadelphia Inquirer Hopes To Expand Sports Video Content

“Things took a while to get rolling, but the Inquirer believes in live video and is executing it in a way that doesn’t burn out their staff.”

Russ Heltman

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Courtesy: The Philadelphia Inquirer

The Philadelphia Inquirer is pivoting harder into video content during the 2021 Philadelphia Eagles season. Digiday spoke with the paper about how they are revitalizing and monetizing live video.

The Inquirer brought back live video this season in the form of Gameday Central. The live streaming show is recorded in front of Lincoln Financial Field with Eagles beat reporter EJ Smith and columnist David Murphy. The two break down the ins and outs of the Eagles opponent that week on top of what fans can expect from birds.

So far, the project is a success. Things took a while to get rolling, but the Inquirer believes in live video and is executing it in a way that doesn’t burn out their staff.

“Our future vision for this is that we can do this for all of our sports,” Michael Huang, the Inquirer’s managing editor of sports, told Digiday. “For all of our pro teams, I fully intend on having a robust, gameday central activity.”

Huang came over from ESPN and has been integral in the Inquirer’s push to fund and produce more than just written content consumers usually go to them for.

“You have to have more than text-based content,” Huang added. “We have to establish products, both based on all of our content and creating [new] content, that goes across multiple platforms.”

Inquirer director of special projects and editorial events Evan Benn told Digiday that the paper’s hosted close to 200 virtual live events since the world changed due to the COVID-19 pandemic.

The initial Gameday Central stream amassed around 2,400 views and has since grown enough to warrant sponsorship. Comcast Xfinity is currently the stream’s title sponsor. Hyper-localized broadcasts like these could be here to stay as media entities all over the country to meet consumers on their turf.

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Michael Kay: Vin Scully Was ‘A Gift From The Gods’

“No one can come close to his talent and his ability to communicate so easily with his audience.”

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As sports media figures continue to mourn the passing of Vin Scully, Yankees television play-by-play announcer Michael Kay penned a special op-ed to Scully in The New York Post.

Kay noted the sheer length of Scully’s career — pointing out he announced games for Jackie Robinson and Gil Hodges just as he did for Clayton Kershaw — and how his style “transcended generations”.

“If you listen to how some called a game in the 50s, you can question if they would even be hired by today’s execs or, more importantly, accepted by today’s audience,” Kay said. “Scully was just as good and relevant in 2016 as he was in 1950. There is an incredible genius to that accomplishment.”

The two baseball broadcasters both graduated from Fordham University, which Kay said bonded them after they were introduced to one another in 1999 by Scully’s friend Keith Olbermann.

Kay also echoed a sentiment shared by many the day following Scully’s passing: that he was the greatest sports broadcaster of all time.

“In an era of hot takes where debate shows argue about the greatest this and the greatest that, there is no debate that Scully is simply the greatest sports broadcaster who ever lived,” Kay definitively said. “No one can come close to his talent and his ability to communicate so easily with his audience.”

He later added Scully’s ability “was a gift from the Gods. A lovely, soft, easy voice and a disarming manner that made him sound like a friend and not an authority figure giving you the score.”

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NFL Network’s Kyle Brandt Will Host Podcast With Omaha Productions

Among other duties, Brandt will be hosting a podcast distributed by ESPN called Kyle Brandt’s Basement.

Jordan Bondurant

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You’ll soon be able to hear NFL Network’s Kyle Brandt on your favorite podcast platform.

Brandt, who co-hosts Good Morning Football, signed on with Peyton Manning’s Omaha Productions according to Adam Schefter.

Among other duties, Brandt will be hosting a podcast distributed by ESPN called Kyle Brandt’s Basement.

“I’m thrilled about this show, and I’ll be shot out of a cannon every single day,” said Brandt. “It’s in my own basement and I’ve got games, toys and takes. I can promise one thing: it will not be boring.”

Caesars Sportsbook will be supply all betting lines for Brandt’s show. Caesars will also present Brandt’s weekly gambling segment Caesars Picks: This Time It’s Personal where Brandt will risk his own personal items around his basement when picking games based on Caesars Sportsbook spreads.

Brandt’s show joins a lineup of six other podcasts originally announced back in June.

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DirecTV Strikes Deal with Amazon to Carry Thursday Night Football in Bars and Restaurants

. Owners were being faced with the choice of having to upgrade their video systems to handle streaming video. Some are not currently equipped to do so.

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DirecTV Amazon

This season, Thursday Night Football moves over to Amazon’s streaming service for the first time. That might be good for consumers at home, but that left a drastic issue still with bars and restaurants carrying the games.

John Ourand of Sports Business Journal reports that Amazon has agreed to allow DirecTV co carry its games to bars and restaurants. Owners were being faced with the choice of having to upgrade their video systems to handle streaming video. Some are not currently equipped to do so. Some establishments that have upgraded their equipment recently have run into issues syncing the video to go to different televisions from the stream.

DirecTV is also entering its last season with NFL Sunday Ticket.

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