A lot has happened this week, check out the weekly rewind to see what you missed:
A lot of changes happening at the “World Wide Leader in Sports.” ESPN is making changes on both the digital and TV sides:
- Cari Champion is leaving First Take. Friday was Champion’s last day as host and moderator. The next time you’ll see her, it will be as an anchor for the morning edition of SportsCenter.
- It was also recently announced that writer Jason Whitlock will no longer be the head of his brainchild ESPN spinoff site on race and sports, The Undefeated. Whitlock returned to ESPN in 2013 to create the “Black Grantland” as it was unofficially dubbed. Things seemed to have gone awry when Whitlock’s vision and that of his employees didn’t quite match up. Two scathing pieces from Deadspin didn’t help the process I’m sure. Deets from the press release.
As we continue to move forward in the process of creating The Undefeated — a new ESPN site focusing on race and sports — we have collectively decided to make some structural adjustments that will maximize the skill sets and strengths of our team, leading to the best possible output for the site and for all of ESPN. To that end, Jason Whitlock will now be entirely focused on what he does best: creating distinctive and compelling content, which will live across various ESPN platforms. Jason’s thought-provoking perspective has always been a hallmark of his work and this will allow him to completely devote his time and energy to that. As a result, he will make significant contributions to multiple ESPN entities and programs. Since returning to ESPN, Jason has been instrumental in assembling the foundation of a strong editorial team, formulating the vision for the project and collaborating with our digital product team to develop the blueprint for the site.
- ESPN announced last month that they would be moving on from their relationship with Grantland and 30-for-30 creator Bill Simmons. Right now there are said to be several media companies in high pursuit of Simmons. At the top of the list per The Hollywood Reporter is HBO.
- The St Louis Cardinals have a hacking scandal on their hands. In what Cardinals chairman Bill DeWitt deemed as “rougish behavior” by a handful of individuals – whose identity at this time is still unknown – tapped into the Houston Astros personal player database
- Today’s theme seems to be workplace changes and dysfunction, so let’s continue on with that:
The New England Patriots cut ties with lineman Brandon Spikes recently. So Spikes decided that he wanted to cut ALL TIES with the storied franchise. Spikes but his 2011 AFC championship ring on Ebay. At last glance it was going for $19,499.
- Could you see Allen Iverson as a team executive? His former Sixers head coach Larry Brown can. He’s making the case that Philly should bring AI into the fold:
“I just wish there was some way that he could be involved,” said Brown, who coached Iverson and the 76ers from 1997 to 2003, making the NBA Finals in 2001. “Just teach him about the organization and let him figure it out, figure out how he can help. He can certainly judge talent. He certainly has people’s respect. Kids will listen to anything he said. He’s certainly bright as hell.”
- Are you an NBA fan who coveted a league pass subscription to see your out of market favorite teams play, but were turned off by the price? Good news, next season the NBA plans to offer single game streaming on team specific packages.
The single game offering will allow fans to select individual NBA LEAGUE PASS live games on a given day during the regular season. The individual team package, available for all 30 NBA teams, will give fans the option to follow one team through the regular season. …
These new offerings will be made available during the 2015-16 season by NBA Digital to broadband and mobile subscribers on iOS and Android devices. Details on where else these new offerings may be purchased, and information regarding 2015-16 pricing for all NBA LEAGUE PASS packages, will be announced in mid-July.
- Lastly, Kanye West has had two recent almost run-ins with his ex, Amber Rose. The first was last weekend at Drake’s house during an epic pool/ foam party that was attended by many of your favs including Pistons guard Brandon Jennings, Lakers Nick Young, rapper The Game, Blac Chyna, French Montana and others.