Let’s go for your links today.
Starting with Richard Deitsch of Sports Illustrated, he explores whether the Women’s World Cup can find an audience and he also scolds Pierre McGuire.
Steve Weiberg of USA Today says a group of former college athletes is suing ESPN and CBS plus other networks for using their likenesses on commercials, promos and classic programming without their permission. This is going to be a very interesting case.
Sergio Non of USA Today says Spike’s replay of an old UFC event beat a new UFC card airing on Versus in the ratings on Sunday.
Wayne Friedman of MediaPost looks at the NFL seeking yet another TV package to help drive up revenue.
George Winslow of Broadcasting & Cable writes that NBA Digital saw record traffic for the Draft last week.
Mike Reynolds from Multichannel News says the Sportsman Channel continues to gain HD access on Comcast systems in the South.
Mike says a couple of presenting sponsors of ESPN’s self-aggrandizing ESPY Awards are back for another year.
Anthony Crupi at Adweek tells us that TNT still has a few spots open for the NASCAR Sprint Cup Race at Daytona this Saturday.
Louisa Ada Seltzer of Media Life says the Women’s World Cup is a top draw on TV this week.
Cam Martin of SportsNewser says Fang’s Bites fave Bethanie Mattek-Sands has issued a challenge to the Larry Brown Sports blog.
Kevin Arnovitz of ESPN’s True Hoop NBA blog network notes that the league’s techies and social media gurus are possibly looking at websites without the likenesses of any of its players in case a lockout becomes reality. Thanks to Marcus Vanderberg of SportsNewser for the link.
Dan Fogarty from SportsGrid notes that ESPN is stocking up on attractive blond female sportscasters.
CNBC’s Darren Rovell talks with DirecTV Football Cop C.J. Hunter a.k.a. Eli Manning.
Dave Seminara of the New York Times’ Straight Sets blog isn’t a big fan of having to shuffle around NBC and ESPN2 to find the Wimbledon match he wants to watch.
Newsday’s Neil Best looks at Tiki Barber’s attempted NFL comeback.
And Neil has more with Tiki in his blog.
The Washington Post’s Dan Steinberg in the DC Sports Bog has the results of a local magazine’s sports media poll.
Ed Sherman at Crain’s Chicago Business notes that former Cubs and Nationals manager Jim Riggleman will be a guest analyst for the Cubs-White Sox series on Comcast SportsNet.
The Idaho Press-Tribune notes that CBS Sports Network gets an important pickup in Big Sky country and for fans looking to watch Boise State football.
Brian Murphy of the Idaho Statesman says CBS Sports Network will be added to a digital tier which means customers will have to pay extra to see it.
Joe Flint of the Los Angeles Times says the NFL is going full speed ahead with a new TV package.
Tony Manfred of the Business Insider Sports Page says Comcast hopes to use a Thursday Night NFL Football package to challenge ESPN.
Jim Barthold of Fierce Cable talks about Comcast desperately wanting to pick up the NFL for Versus.
Barry Janoff of The Big Lead says when athletes tweet, they engage their fans.
The Canadian Sports Media Blog says the Pierre McGuire-to-NBC story is just about official.
Sports Media Watch notes that the USA-Mexico Gold Cup Final captured plenty of viewers on Univision.
SMW says the NBC Sports Group has yet to settle on a new name for Versus.
SMW has some announcing recommendations for MLB’s TV partners.
Joe Favorito says it’s time for the Yankees Old Timers Game to shuffle into a new era and bring in a “new generation” of old timers.
Awful Announcing’s Bob Bender is not a fan of ESPN’s coverage of the Women’s World Cup or of women’s soccer in general. And the USA played North Korea today, not China.
And I’ll end it there for today.
Time for the links on this Tuesday. Lots of good stuff to get to.
Matthew Futterman of the Wall Street Journal looks at MLB Commissioner Bud Selig rejecting the Los Angeles Dodgers’ deal with Fox which now throws Frank McCourt’s ownership of the team into jeopardy.
In Sports Business Journal, Broadcasting & Cable Editor-in-Chief Ben Grossman has some suggestions for Major League Soccer on how to grow the sport in the U.S.
From the ESPN Ombudsman, Kelly McBride of the Poynter Institute says Bill Simmons’ Grantland site shows potential, but needs to do more.
Sports Illustrated’s Richard Deitsch has his June Media Power List.
Richard also talks with the CEO of the polarizing Bleacher Report.
Had to catch up with those last three links from last week. I was so far behind after not doing linkage Friday, Saturday and Sunday.
Curtis Eichelberger of Bloomberg writes that NFL quarterback Chad Pennington is taking a year off and will work for Fox Sports when the league comes back from lockout.
Lesley Goldberg of the Hollywood Reporter writes that Comedy Central has canceled two sports-themed shows after just one season.
Marisa Guthrie of the Reporter notes that the U.S. Open’s final round ratings improved from Saturday’s numbers, but were still far below last year’s.
John Eggerton from Broadcasting & Cable has NBC being very apologetic about cutting “Under God” from the Pledge of Allegiance during Sunday’s coverage of the U.S. Open.
Mike Reynolds of Multichannel News says NBA’s digital platforms are all over this week’s NBA Draft.
Toni Fitzgerald from Media Life Magazine says Rory McIlroy has yet to prove he’s a ratings draw.
Brett McMurphy of CBS Sports.com says the Big East turned down a big payday from ESPN to risk checking the free agent market.
Sam Mamudi of Marketwatch.com notes that you may not know that Turner Sports has a rather large online presence in golf.
Alex Weprin of SportsNewser recaps Comcast CEO Brian Roberts’ comments on NBC’s successful Olympics bid.
At SportsGrid, Dave Levy writes that Grantland failed to live up to the hype.
Dave says Bill Simmons could have left ESPN to create Grantland somewhere else.
Dan Fogarty at SportsGrid says the Dan Patrick Show has an unusual proposal on how to end the NFL lockout.
CNBC’s Darren Rovell writes that flamboyant tennis fashionista Bethanie Mattek-Sands (who came to Fang’s Bites’ attention in 2007) has signed a new endorsement contract for an nontraditional tennis product.
Jay Busbee of Yahoo’s From the Marbles blog looks at Fox’s proposal to move some of its NASCAR races to cable in its next contract.
At the Daly Planet, John Daly has some thoughts on what this potential move means for the future of Speed.
Diane Mermigas of the Business Insider says innovation could help NBCUniversal pay for its $4.38 billion pricetag for the Olympics.
Olympic sports beat writer John Powers of the Boston Globe finally gets to write about NBC winning the rights to four Olympic Games.
Tom Rock of Newsday has some quotes of tonight’s HBO Real Sports profile of former New York Giants running back and NBC analyst Tiki Barber.
Richard Sandomir from the New York Times looks at MLB rejecting the Los Angeles Dodgers’ deal with Fox.
Pete Dougherty of the Albany Times Union notes that Rory McIlroy doesn’t move the TV ratings meter like Tiger Woods did.
Nate Mink writing for the Philadelphia Daily News recaps an ESPN taping of a program involving legendary coaches Joe Paterno of Penn State and Mike Krzyzewski of Duke.
Joseph Santoliquito of the Marple Newtown Patch has a profile of Comcast SportsNet Philadelphia anchor Ron Burke.
Greg Augman of the St. Petersburg Times notes that Jon Gruden is taping a session of his ESPN “QB Camp” series with former Ohio State quarterback Terrelle Pryor.
Ken Sugiura of the Atlanta Journal-Constitution has an interview with Georgia Tech’s Athletic Director on a few subjects including the impact of the ESPN/SEC contract on the school.
Mac Engel of the Fort Worth Star-Telegram notes that Golf Channel is giving David Feherty a platform for his humor.
The Milwaukee Journal Sentinel’s Bob Wolfley has Keith Olbermann not impressed with the tome on ESPN.
Justin Albers at the Chicago Sun-Times chronicles ESPN’s Baseball Tonight’s visit to the Windy City on Sunday.
Robert Feder of Time Out Chicago says the local ESPN Radio affiliate is about to move to new streetside studios.
Chad Purcell of the Omaha World-Journal goes behind-the-scenes with ESPN’s crew at the College World Series.
Bill Shaikin and David Wharton of the Los Angeles Times have a story on MLB rejecting the Fox offer to Dodgers’ owner Frank McCourt and putting the team into limbo.
The Spokane (WA) Spokesman-Review has a profile of Golf Channel’s Todd Lewis who used to work in the area.
Kenyon Wallace of the Toronto Star responds to ESPN the Magazine ranking the Canadian city as the worst in all of pro sports.
Cathal Kelly of the Star says there are cities worse off than Toronto.
The Canadian Sports Media Blog has its version of the NHL TV Awards.
Maury Brown of the Biz of Baseball writes that Frank McCourt is threatening legal action to hold onto the Dodgers.
Barry Petchesky of Deadspin has video of NESN’s Don Orsillo and Jerry Remy being amused by a Red Sox fan wearing a chicken hat. I found out later that she’s the sister of writer Joe Meloni who covers the Hockey East conference for College Hockey News.
And that’s where I’ll leave it for now. Lots of links today.
Today at the French Open, it’s going to be one of the more intriguing matchups. It may not be a close match as Maria Sharapova is expected to win, but it’s intriguing because of the fashion. You may remember back in September during the US Open where Bethanie Mattek was seen wearing some outrageous outfits including a leopard-skin outfit and then one which showed so much cleavage that a ballboy could not stop gazing at her.
The match is expected to be played at 2:15 p.m. ET weather permitting. It has been raining in Paris today and some matches may have been pushed back due to the weather.
But if you’re at work and need to see what I’m talking about, you can go to ESPN360 for live, streaming coverage or other backdoor sites.
For good measure, I give you the infamous cleavage shot.
UPDATE – Due to weather and darkness, the match between Maria and Bethanie was suspended with Sharapova ahead, 6-2, 2-3. The match will resume at 5 a.m. ET on the Tennis Channel and Tennis Channel.com.
I won’t be able to give you the Saturday links as usual this morning. I’m currently away and have had to leave the house early for a get-together. I’ll give you the links later today.
As I celebrate the one year anniversary of the re-launch of this blog, I think back to some of the bigger stories of the last 12 months.
I’ll count them down in reverse order:
11. Alycia Lane’s pictures being e-mailed to Rich Eisen and having them intercepted by his wife.
10. Bethanie Mattek showing her cleavage to a ball boy at the US Open and dressing as a French Nanny.
9. The Red Sox firing Jerry Trupiano from the radio booth and using the combination of Dave O’Brien and the inexperienced Glenn Geffner to replace him in 2007 leaving Red Sox fans in despair whenever Glenn was on the air.
8. Turner Sports successfully debuting TBS Hot Corner during the MLB playoffs, mixing live coverage on TV and on the internet.
7. The NBA reups with ESPN and TNT for another 8 seasons.
6. Dan Patrick leaves ESPN Radio and then goes missing …. errrrr…. I mean, signs a weak radio syndication deal and then joins Sports Illustrated.
5. Kelly Tilghman of the Golf Channel was suspended for making a racial slur earlier this year and subsequently apologized upon her return.
4. Debut of the Big Ten Network to a miniscule audience.
3. NFL Network vs. Cable.
2. Media buyouts leaving newspapers and TV stations with skeleton staffs.
1. The Buzz Bissinger vs. Will Leitch segment on Costas Now.
It has been a good 12 months. I’ve enjoyed doing the links and I’ll continue doing them as long as I’m able. And thanks to the people who have sent kind words over the last 12 months including Neil Best, Ken Schott, David Scott, Richard Deitsch, Joe Favorito, Bruce Allen, Bob Glauber, Chris Pursell, Beau Estes, Vince Wladika, Darren Rovell, Andy Gresh, Curt Chaplin, Christopher Byrne, Andrew Siciliano, John Ourand, Dave Weekley, John Crowe, Rick Lacroix, Amazing Race Asia Executive Producer Michael McKay and anyone who has sent comments anonymously both good and bad. I appreciate your patronage and I hope you continue to visit over the next 12 months and beyond. This has been lots of fun.
Time to give you some links on this Thursday. On WEEI, it was WBZ-TV’s Bob Lobel and Steve Burton filling in for Dennis & Callahan once again. Tomorrow is the day when D&C’s contracts expire.
On this opening night of the NFL season, Susan Bickelhaupt of the Boston Globe talks with CBS’ Dan Dierdorf and ESPN’s Ron Jaworski about the Patriots. Pete Dougherty of the Albany Times-Union writes about Jaworski joining Monday Night Football. Don Benevento of the Cherry Hill (NJ) Courier Post also has a story on Jaworski. In the Philadelphia Daily News, Mark Kram says Jaworski is ready for some Monday Night Football. Tom FitzGerald of the San Francisco Chronicle says NFL Network games will be hard to see in the Bay Area. Mike Burrows of the Denver Post looks at the building of a football nation, some of the events listed include TV watersheds. Also from the Denver Post, Anthony Cotton says football is king in the US, thanks partly to TV.
Chris Zelkovich of the Toronto Star talks about the opening of the NFL season and some of the changes in TV partners in Canada. And William Houston of the Toronto Globe and Mail talks with NBC’s John Madden about being ready for the season. Bill Harris of the Winnepeg Sun talks with NBC’s Al Michaels.
John Ryan of the San Jose Mercury News says the Raiders game against Detroit is close to being blacked out locally in the Bay Area.
Bob Wolfey of the Milwaukee Journal-Sentinel writes about ESPN’s Keyshawn Johnson, NBC’s John Madden and Bethanie Mattek’s wardrobe.
Andy Fixmer of the Bloomberg News service writes that due to higher rights fees for MLB, NFL and NASCAR and lower subscription fees from the cable companies means ESPN’s growth has slowed, and lowering Disney’s stock price.
The Worcester Telegram and Gazette’s Bill Doyle talks with NESN’s Don Orsillo who for some reason changed his policy about mentioning no-hitters on the air.
Dave Dye of the Detroit News says controversy over the Big Ten Network stands to get uglier. From very amateurish looking West Liberty (IA) Index, Susan Sedlacek writes that Liberty Communications has BTN while Mediacom customers still cannot watch it. Mike Prisuta of the Pittsburgh Tribune-Review says BTN is worth watching.
Richard Deitsch of Sports Illustrated has his media power rankings for August.
While ESPN announced last week it would reduce the scripted fare it had offered, news comes from the Television Critics Association Convention that the network is still considering doing a movie about the late Green Bay Packers coach Vince Lombardi.
Bob Molinaro of the Virginian-Pilot says even with a local TV station dumping its traditional sports report on its newscasts, other stations feel local sports still needs to be covered.
A lot more links than I expected for a Thursday, but the opening of the NFL season has helped. I’ll be back later.
After seeing Bethanie Mattek’s wardrobe for the first time in this year’s US Open, I have come to realize that the girl likes to wear outrageous outfits on the court. This year’s numbers were not the first to draw attention, but the fact that she advanced to the second round in the women’s singles and went to the quarters in the women’s doubles with Sania Mirza got her more publicity than in the past.
Thanks to Marija of the Women’s Tennis Blog, we discovered that Bethanie had plans for a French nanny outfit that was later shelved:
“New York is crazy. It’s always cool to do something here. It’s just keeping up with what the crowd likes. People are so vocal about it. Some love it or hate it. If they love or hate it, they’ll come see it. I think it helps tennis.”
American Bethanie Mattek on her latest ‘outrageous’ outfit, a leopardskin number.
“She can do what the hell she wants. It really doesn’t matter to me. I can do what I want for that matter.”
Mattek’s doubles partner Sania Mirza has her say.
“Very special. She was even more sexy than ever today.”
Chan Yung, who teamed up with Chuang Chia-Jung to beat Mirza and Mattek, proves it takes all sorts.
“I was going to have a French nanny kind of look. That one was put aside.”
Mattek proves that there are limits even to her fashion taste.
Quotes courtesy of BBC Sport.
Just for good measure, here are some of her outfits from her ten days at Flushing Meadow.
This year’s US Open has brought us many an attractive female tennis player. Unfortunately, Maria Sharapova, Ana Ivanovic and Daniela Hantuchova all were eliminated within the first week. Then there’s Bethanie Mattek of the US, whose wardrobe has gotten notices, but in this case, it’s not a good thing. Thanks to my friend, Linda, who pointed this out to me. The Women’s Tennis Blog wrote about Bethanie’s attire which included a hideous gold dress with headband (picture courtesy of Ms. Flux at Flickr).
Reading Bethanie’s bio on the WTA Tour website, one thing that sticks out is that she wears basketball shoes on the court? Short of not having a sponsor, I’m wondering if that’s on purpose.
According to her Wikipedia bio, Bethanie is certainly known for making fashion statements on the court:
- 2004 US Open – wore a leopard print outfit.
- 2005 US Open – fined for wearing a striped cowboy hat.
- 2006 Wimbledon – appeared in a ‘soccer theme’ complete with £10 football socks, chandelier earrings, a boob-tube worn over a strappy vest top, tiny running shorts and a headband.
- 2006 JPMorgan Chase Open – sported pink knee-high socks.
- 2006 US Open – she showed up this time in beige; a loosely draped top, with a crocheted waist and split sleeves that resembled a toga, teamed up with beige knee-high socks.
- 2007 US Open – wore another leopard print outfit.
She certainly likes to entertain.