Pro Leagues Reach New Fans on TV Through Esports

  • NASCAR finds 1.7 million new fans through Pro Invitational Series on Fox. About 75% of eMLS Tournament Special viewers had not watched a real MLS game in 2020.
  • With esports verticals established, pro leagues also relied on star power to draw eyeballs.

Updated with additional NBA2K League viewership metrics. A recurring response to the absence of live sports by leagues during the coronavirus pandemic has seen organizations team up with media partners to put esports on television. While early discussions for the likes of NASCAR, MLS, and the NBA centered around how to fill programming holes with established esports verticals, what ensued was a crossover effect: esports leagues and professional sports themselves were introduced to new audiences quarantined at home. The eNASCAR […]

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It’s Time to Take TikTok Measurement Seriously

  • TikTok is now an essential part of an organization's digital strategy
  • Conviva drastically cuts time needed to gather TikTok data analytics

(Conviva is a proud partner of Front Office Sports) TikTok has grown up fairly quickly. It went from a fringe social network used by tweens to a must-have for every professional sports team and organization. As of now, more than 75% of the sports teams in the NFL, NBA, MLB, NHL, and MLS have accounts and are already putting up serious numbers.  Now, as the platform hits 2 billion downloads, it’s clear that things are beginning to change. What was […]

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Rio Tinto Stadium

Start Up in Place

  • This article was first published in the FOS Daily Newsletter. Subscribe here.
  • The NWSL is closing in on a finalized plan to return, while the MLS, NBA and NHL move closer as well.

As leagues develop plans to return to play, many are counting on a centralized location to ensure the safety of players and staff. The National Women’s Soccer League has chosen Salt Lake City as its preferred spot for a month-long tournament set to start June 27 before returning to a regular schedule this year. All nine of the league’s owners have voted in favor of the proposal, which would see games played at facilities operated by the Utah Royals FC […]

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Univision Celebrates Return of Live Sports With Bundesliga Weekend

  • Spanish-language network ramps up digital programming before and after games ahead of the league’s return.
  • Bundesliga’s comeback has landed the network three new sponsors.

Germany’s Bundesliga season returns on May 16, bringing live professional sports back to U.S. network partners Fox and Univision for the first time in two months. Univision is marking the league’s comeback by ramping up pre and-post-game programming and digital coverage for its Hispanic audience, according to Eric Conrad, Univision’s executive vice president of sports programming and acquisitions. In addition to studio shows, Univision this week will air both executive and player interviews featuring Bayern Munich’s Alphonso Davies and RB […]

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Orlando City

MLS Hitting The Sunshine State

  • This article was first published in the FOS Daily Newsletter. Subscribe here.
  • Orlando could host all 26 MLS teams for up to two months.

Major League Soccer may take up Gov. DeSantis’s invitation and head to Orlando to resume its season. Under a proposal from the league, all 26 MLS teams would travel to and begin training in the city by June 1, with games beginning on June 22. Four or five weeks of closed-doors games and a tournament would follow, mostly played at the ESPN Wide World of Sports Complex. Roughly 1,000 players, coaches, and staff would be housed at one of the […]

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Awaiting MLS Debut, Sacramento Republic Looks To Fans At Home

  • Before it joins MLS in 2022, Sacramento Republic FC is using the coronavirus pandemic to both discover new fans and maintain its existing ones.
  • From its “Let’s Talk Soccer” initiative to “Indomitable Hands,” the club is using both its digital and personal touch to connect with Sacramento locals.

A current member of the USL Championship, Sacramento Republic FC had its eyes on 2022, when it was set to become the 29th team in Major League Soccer. But now that the coronavirus pandemic has made 2022 feel eons away, team president Benjamin Gumpert is focusing on what he and his staff can do to fulfill Sacramento Republic’s ultimate mission: to make its community a better place. “By doing this, this isn’t top-down by any means,” Gumpert said. “This is […]

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MLS Launches New Training Portal To Reach Players At Home

  • MLS's new training platform is launching with content from all 26 clubs in the league.
  • There are more than 450 videos featuring skills that can be used indoors or outdoors, only needing a ball and a bit of space.

MLS is rolling out a new digital training platform that aims to help youth and recreational players of all ages and abilities that are staying at home improve at soccer. The platform, which is called “Train With MLS,” is launching on April 16 with an initial library of hundreds of videos organized in categories such as ball mastery, dribbling, and fitness. The skills are grouped into fundamental, intermediate, and advanced skill levels and all of the content has been reviewed, […]

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Athletes Still Getting Paid Despite Stoppage Clauses and CBA Uncertainty

  • The NBA is the only major professional sports league with force majeure language in its CBA, providing an outline for how salaries will be reduced in the event it is enacted.
  • The NHL and MLB have language in their standard player contracts for salary and season requirements in the event of unforeseeable emergencies. The NFL does not.

Most aspects of professional sports, including player salaries, are riddled with the same elements of uncertainty plaguing the world right now. Professional baseball and basketball players could lose large portions of their salaries if games from this current season are eventually canceled, according to the terms of their collective bargaining agreements. Football players could also be impacted if the fall season doesn’t happen as currently scheduled, as could those who make up the rosters of MLS clubs. “The big question […]

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MLS, Fox Sports Teaming Up For New Esports Series

  • New effort from MLS and Fox Sports will see professional soccer players and professional FIFA players team up.
  • MLS's eMLS esports initiative is now in its third season.

MLS will bring its eMLS esports initiative to linear television to not only engage fans during the league’s hiatus but also to further support coronavirus-related relief efforts. The five-episode series will be known as the eMLS Tournament Special, and air on FS1 on Sundays. It will see MLS players team up with the eMLS player from their club, facing off with other clubs from across the league. MLS Works, the league’s social responsibility platform, and FOX Sports will make donations […]

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Trump Urges NFL to Start on Time in Meeting With Sports Leaders

  • President Donald Trump held a conference call with twelve leaders of major American sports leagues on Saturday.
  • President also suggested sports leaders lobby together for reinstatement of entertainment expense tax break, which would allow for deductions of tickets and concessions.

President Donald Trump held a conference call with leaders of twelve American sports leagues on Saturday and said he was optimistic the NFL could start its season on time and that fans could be back into stadiums and arenas by August or September. “I want fans back whenever we’re ready- as soon as we can. I can’t tell you a date, but I think it’s going to be sooner rather than later,” Trump said from the White House during a […]

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