Posts for sportsnet

“Daily News Live” Will No Longer Be “Daily News Live”

Kyle Scott - March 4, 2013

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The NBC-ization of Comcast SportsNet continues.

In a press release this morning, the network announced that long-running Daily News Live, which has been a mainstay at 5 p.m. on weekdays since 1997, will become Philly Sports Talk on April 8.

From the press release that includes the sub-head “Philly Sports Talk will Tap into Resources from NBC’s Family of Companies”:

Comcast SportsNet, Philadelphia’s source for comprehensive local sports coverage, announces the launch of “Philly Sports Talk.”  This new sports news and entertainment program will debut on Monday, April 8 at 5 p.m. and will air weekdays on Comcast SportsNet.

Hosted by Michael Barkann, “Philly Sports Talk” will engage and inform the viewers on the trending topics in Philadelphia sports and from around the globe. Philadelphia Daily News writers will continue to contribute to the program but additional guests including local and national media members, coaches, players, radio personalities and others from the sports and entertainment industry will appear on the program.  Comcast SportsNet will also tap into the NBCUniversal portfolio with guests from NBC’s family of companies. 

 

The Talk thing is used in virtually every facet of NBC Sports– all of the brand’s national sports blogs are titled _____ Talk, CSN folks have been using the Twitter hashtag #____talk for about a year now, and then, of course, there is Pro Football Talk Live on NBC Sports. The change to DNL just further cements the synergy (I bet the folks at Comcast Global Super Power World Owners love terms like synergy) between NBC Sports and its regional affiliates. [Truthfully, this has mostly happened already.]

From a practical standpoint, it’s probably not a bad thing that CSN is divorcing itself (a little bit, at least) from a dying newspaper and any place that employs Marcus Hayes on a full-time basis. And while it’s sometimes painful to see guys like Hayes, Dick Jerardi and Marcus Kram shout at kids on their lawns and regale Barkann with tales of yesteryear, I’ve always liked DNL. It’s infinitely more watchable than SportsNite, with just enough structure to be serious, but not enough to kill a lively conversation. I would imagine that the changes for Philly Sports Talk will be mostly cosmetic and that the show will remain largely the same… except for maybe the infusion of more wide-ranging guests from the NBC Global Empire and perhaps topics near and dear to the hearts of NBC Sports NBC Comcast Bilderberg Skull and Bones advertisers. We’ll find out on April 8.

UPDATE: Oh this is fun. Perhaps not accidentally, the Daily News jumped the announcement last night. Molly Eichel wrote that, previously, 13 writers were contracted to be on the show each week. That number will shrink to just five on Philly Sports Talk.

Who Was The New Female Anchor on CSN Last Night? (A Pictorial)

Kyle Scott - March 2, 2012

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That’d be Texas cutie Sharla McBride, y'all.

When reader CN commented this morning that he was looking for coverage of CSN’s new anchor, Sharla McBride, I was a bit disappointed that I didn’t know what he was talking about. My thing, my New Female Sportscaster thing – not unlike Peter Griffin’s thing which tells him when someone touches the thermostat - didn’t go off. It broke. Let me down in a moment of need. Didn’t alert me when freelancer Sharla McBride took to the CSN airwaves (cable lines) last night for Sportsnite.

Thankfully, CN was there to sniff her out… and all you creepers on Twitter:

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To the Google machine!

Details on McBride, the Scranton area reporter who is getting a few fill-in spot starts this week at CSN: [via her Facebook fan page]

Sharla was born and raised in Austin, TX, and has loved sports all of her life. She attended the University of Georgia, and studied Sports Broadcasting, while majoring in International Affairs and Foreign Policies. While attending UGA, Sharla interned with the sports department at FOX 5 in Atlanta, GA, and then went on to briefly work there as an Associate Sports Producer. After graduation, Sharla worked as a Sports Reporter for KTXS-TV, the ABC affiliate in Abilene, TX. After working there for a short time, Sharla was hired as a Sports Anchor and Reporter at WNEP-TV, the ABC affiliate in Scranton-Wilkes Barre, PA. 

Sharla also freelances with CSN Philly reporting for the show "Harness Week" which airs every Saturday.

Sharla LOVES her job and feels lucky to have such a strong passion for her career!

Sharla bleeds red and black, rooting for her Georgia Bulldogs at every chance she gets! She also has a pet English Bulldog named Herschel Walker!

 

I’m a little disappointed that she doesn’t like long walks on the beach, but the fact that she named her dog Herschel Walker more than makes up for it.

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McBride is on Twitter (@SharlaMcBride) and says that she will be on again tonight at 6 and 10:

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Now, a pictorial of McBride… you know, so you recognize her when you see her on your picture box.

As always, sexy southern sportscaster pictorials are best viewed while listening to Kellie Pickler’s Red High Heels. [click play]

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Report: Eagles Asked CSN to Remove Gonzo From Eagles Coverage

Kyle Scott - September 21, 2011

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Where's Gonzo? [Photo: Philly Chit Chat]

Journalism took a nut shot today. Allegedly.

According to a report by Dan Gross (who – by the way – is just hitting home runs this summer), the Eagles asked Comcast SportsNet to remove John Gonzalez from all team coverage. As Gross points out, Gonzo hasn’t said a word about the team on the website or Twitter.

Odd.

Anyone who is familiar with Gonzo’s work, both his columns and former radio show on 97.5, knows that he liked to talk about the Eagles… and Andy Reid… a lot. Most of the time not in glowing terms.

Gross reached out to CSN for comment, and was told the following by the network’s spokeswoman, Maureen Quilter: [Philly.com]

“Comcast SportsNet and CSNPhilly.com have plenty of Eagles coverage with Ray Didinger and Reuben Frank on the digital side and Derrick Gunn on the TV side . . .. If we need John to write about the Eagles he will.

We talk with all the teams, including the Eagles, all the time. And as a good business practice, we don't share those conversations with the public."

 

Eagles spokesman Rob Zeigler said the team made no such request about Gonzo.

If the Eagles did indeed make that request, it is a very ballsy move on their part. They’re not fans of that whole freedom of speech thing, and this would be an all new low.

What’s worse, however, is if CSN honored that request. CSN already provides mostly sunny-side up coverage of local teams (example: Comcast owns the Flyers, too) and they are granted extraordinary access to the Eagles (I mean, how else would we get to see Shady McCoy giving D-Gunn celebratory butt slaps?). Catering to the one team that they don’t have any ownership ties or broadcasting rights with? Well, that’s not good.  

Of course, this wouldn’t be a surprising request from the Eagles. Their skin isn’t exactly thick. Last season, they denied one local – often critical – radio personality a credential, telling him “he wasn’t a beat reporter.” Well, neither are half of the people in the press box. But most of them usually say nice things about the team… or at least don't have the freedom to bash them in a public setting, the way, say, a columnist would.

I’ll update this story if there is anything new to pass along.

Donovan McNabb is Now a College Basketball Analyst

Ryan Gillon - March 15, 2011

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If he stuck with basketball in college, you would have never known that he exists

Donovan McNabb doesn't know where he's playing football next season, or if he'll be playing football next season. But I can tell you what he'll be doing this weekend.

McNabb will be covering the first two rounds of the NCAA Men's Basketball Tournament for Comcast Sportsnet Mid-Atlantic. He will appear throughout the weekend to give his thoughts and analysis on all that is college basketball.

And after all, he should. He did play college basketball for two years at Syracuse, averaging 7.5 minutes and 2.8 points per game. (He did shoot 46.4%, though… that's not bad). It's no secret that McNabb wants to be a part of the media after his NFL career is over, so I can't blame him for taking the opportunity.

Sadly, word has it that a group of 30 employees in the lunch room at CSN Mid-Atlantic booed viciously when McNabb was announced as an analyst for this weekend…

…yes, I completely made that up.

Dan Steinberg of the DC Sports Bog also had a couple of kneeslappers to boot:

If you wanted to make jokes, you could either say that the final two minutes of analysis will be provided by Rex Grossman, or that producers better have a barf bag at the ready, or that less than 24 hours after announcing they had signed McNabb, CSN will likely bench him in favor of Rick “Doc” Walker. Or something like that.

 

All jokes aside, kudos to McNabb for keeping busy. Many NFL players should find something to do, as well. This lockout might have staying power.

Flyers Hit Nine Year High on CSN Last Night

Kyle Scott - February 16, 2011

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Source: PhildelphiaFlyers.com

This town is Flyered-up.

Last night's Flyers-Lightning game was the most watched Flyers game on Comcast Sportsnet since October 22, 2002 vs. Buffalo. The game received a 3.7 household rating, meaning 112,000 homes were tuned into the game. That number peaked 152,000 at 10:15 P.M., just in time to see the Flyers win in a shootout.

This doesn't even approach the 500,000 homes that were tuned into the Phillies last September, but it shows that we're ready for a playoff run. The Flyers rating in February on CSN, 2.8, is a 40% increase over last February. That's what a Stanley Cup run and the number one ranking in the NHL will do for you.

New Daily News Live Set

Kyle Scott - January 24, 2011

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Great, no desk. All this means is more shots of Dick Jerardi's crotch.

Spectrum Demolition Live Feed

Kyle Scott - November 23, 2010

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Photo via (@spikerocks)

Watch the Spectrum demolition LIVE, after the jump.  If you can't watch or view video at work,  we'll have a full recap following the event.

Missed it?  Watch the "highlights" here.

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Don’t Expect The Phillies to Have Their Own TV Network Any Time Soon

Kyle Scott - September 19, 2010

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Great article on Philly.com today about the one difference that still reamins between the Phillies and teams like the Yankees, Red Sox, and Mets: a TV station.

The biggest money-maker for those teams is not ticket or merchandise sales, it's advertising revenue from their own TV networks.  As you know, the Phillies broadcast most of their games on CSN (their 45 on regular broadcast TV, like My PHL 17, is well above league average).  The Phillies used to own a small share of Comcast SportsNet, but after a few years they realized they were better at running a baseball team than they were at running a television network.  That means the Phillies still earn ad revenue (safe and secure with New York Life) from their broadcasts, but not nearly as much as some of their rivals to the north.

In 2009, the Yankees and Mets earned $417 million and $339 million from their YES and SNY networks, respectively.  That was more than all of their other income sources combined.  The Phillies, who won't divulge an exact number, didn't approach those numbers.

Baseball is the only sport with no salary cap.  That means the more you make, the more you can spend (of course, teams to have to pay a "luxury tax" to the poorer teams).  This is the reason the Phillies have a self-imposed soft cap on their 2010 payroll- around $140 million.  The Phillies only earn $123 million in ticket sales.  While that number may sound like a lot, it puts in perspective just how much other teams earn from owning their own networks.

The problems with the Phillies starting their own network are many.  Given the popularity of Comcast in Philadelphia, the Phillies would have to reach an agreement with them to televise their games. That could turn into a pissing match of epic proportions.  Further, the team would need to provide content 24/7.  CSN already does this in Philly.  The team doesn't think there is enough room for another, similar network.

"Comcast is so big in Philly," said Buck. "We'd need to program our own station 24 hours a day, seven days a week. Phillies games themselves would be one part of it, but then you'd need to be in the business of being a TV station.

So, don't expect to be watching games on "PSN" any time soon.  But, as the article details, if the Phillies keeping winning, the money will keep rolling in.