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John Skipper: Apple Won’t Profit From Sunday Ticket, But Deal Is Still Worth It

“They’re trying to become one of the big content providers, and the surest thing you can have is the NFL.”

Jordan Bondurant

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It had been reported for months that Apple was a frontrunner to land NFL Sunday Ticket and a share of the NFL’s Media properties. Last week, Puck News broke the story that a deal is done, but that Apple has asked the NFL to keep the deal under wraps for now.

Former ESPN boss John Skipper was a guest with Dan Le Batard on Monday’s edition of South Beach Sessions. Skipper, who runs Meadowlark Media with Le Batard, said Apple is smart for targeting the service.

“I think that owning NFL’s Sunday Ticket is one of the few ways to assure they drive more subscriptions (to Apple TV+), and I think that’s what they’re trying to do here, right?” Skipper said. “They’re trying to become one of the big content providers, and the surest thing you can have is the NFL.”

Skipper said the last deal he worked on at ESPN with the league for the rights to Monday Night Football, the network paid just under $2 billion for 17-18 games. If Apple ends up paying north of that per season to take over Sunday Ticket, Skipper said the deal alone won’t be profitable.

“The reports are that they will pay $2.5 billion for Sunday Ticket and other NFL stuff,” he said. “Do they receive $2.5 billion worth of subscription fees? They probably do not.”

Skipper added that profitability isn’t necessarily what’s at the top of the list for Apple. He described live sports as “a loss leader” for several networks. The mega corporation essentially has a blank check to acquire rights to live sporting events. A deal with the NFL more about increasing brand awareness, stock prices and EBITDA.

Sports Online

NASCAR Driver Denny Hamlin Launching Podcast with Dale Earnhardt Jr & Dirty Mo Media

“New episodes will be published each Monday during the NASCAR season with previews and reviews of races, with the goal of inviting guests and interacting with fans playing a future role in the series.”

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Dale Earnhardt Jr.’s Dirty Mo Media has announced a podcast deal with NASCAR driver Denny Hamlin.

Hamlin will host Actions Detrimental with Denny Hamlin on a weekly basis during the NASCAR season. The Actions Detrimental branding is verbiage used by NASCAR for fines assessed to drivers for their disparaging comments about the sport. Known as one of NASCAR’s more outspoken drivers, Hamlin has been fined several times under the “actions detrimental to stock car racing” statutes.

New episodes will be published each Monday during the NASCAR season with previews and reviews of races, with the goal of inviting guests and interacting with fans playing a future role in the series.

Denny Hamlin jokingly thanked Dirty Mo Media for the “opportunity and the fat check” the company wrote for him to host the podcast in a Twitter announcement.

The 42-year-old Hamlin has won 48 races during his 18-year NASCAR Cup Series career. In addition to serving as a driver for Joe Gibbs Racing, he co-owns 23XI Racing with basketball legend Michael Jordan.

The podcast is the latest in an expansion of content produced by the Mooresville, North Carolina-based digital outlet. After beginning with The Dale Jr. Download, the company has grown to include other podcasts like Door, Bumper, Clear, and Speed Street, as well as video projects like The Next Level.

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Barstool Sports CEO: Golf Likely Next Step For Company’s Live Broadcasts

“I think we‘ll start with the biggest sports that we know and love.”

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Barstool Sports CEO Erika Nardini recently did a wide-ranging interview with AdAge.com about the future of the digital sports outlet’s television aspirations, and she said sports they’re familiar with will take priority.

“”We want sports that appeal to a broad audience. We’re kind of tickled to be able to broadcast things in the first place. So I think we‘ll start with the biggest sports that we know and love, whether it’s basketball and football,” Nardini said. “You could definitely see that extended to golf, that would probably be the next place that we’ll play.”

The questions about Barstool’s future aspirations come after the company’s successful first broadcast of the Barstool Sports Arizona Bowl. Barstool says the broadcast received nearly 1 million views, peaking at 130,000 concurrent viewers. The outlet also broadcasted the Barstool Sports Invitational that featured Akron, Mississippi State, Toledo, and UAB in November.

Nardini added that the company is interested live televised sports for a few reasons.

“We’re owned by a sports betting company and the more we think about building our sports platform, there’s obviously a huge opportunity for us to convey a whole bunch of offerings to our audience, but certainly betting will be one of them…I think that live sports on television is the last man standing where it’s all anyone tunes in for.”

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Sports Online

Fanatics to Open First Sportsbook Inside FedEx Field

“The location at the home of the Washington Commanders will make it the first sportsbook to open inside an NFL stadium.”

Jordan Bondurant

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Sports licensing giant Fanatics will soon be launching its long-anticipated sportsbook.

The company will open up a physical sportsbook location in Maryland at FedEx Field on January 20. Fanatics has also been granted a license to operate in Massachusetts, tethered to Plainridge Park Casino.

The location at the home of the Washington Commanders will make it the first sportsbook to open inside an NFL stadium. Bettors in the DMV will now be able to place wagers at all their local teams’ venues, as William Hill has an on-site location at Capital One Arena – home of the Capitals and Wizards – and BetMGM has a space at Nationals Park in D.C.

Despite having a physical location at FedEx Field, bettors in Maryland will not be able to place mobile wagers through a Fanatics Sportsbook app.

According to Front Office Sports, Fanatics hopes to have the sportsbook up and running in some fashion in all states where legal by September.

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