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How Does LeBron Affect Coverage of the Lakers in LA?

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A lot has been written about LeBron James signing with the Los Angeles Lakers. Today, Bryan Curtis of The Ringer is covering LeBron’s move to LA from the perspective of those covering LeBron’s move to LA.

Curtis spoke with reporters and sports writers all over the city to better understand how LeBron James will affect the coverage the Lakers receive. Among those that spoke to Curtis are Dave McMenamin of ESPN and Alli Clifton of SportsNet LA. Both relocated to LA when LeBron decided to leave Cleveland. For McMenamin it was a reassignment within ESPN. For Clifton, it was leaving a job in Cleveland for a new one on the West Coast.

The Athletic: Los Angeles and the LA Times are both investing in Lakers coverage. The Athletic will have four writers covering the Lakers alone. The Times will have as many as four reporters at each Laker game as well. It is a major change from the way the team has been covered recently according to Curtis’ column. “Tania Ganguli, the Times beat writer, said there were weekends when the print press corps consisted of her and two other beat writers.”

None of that takes into account the reporters that are there specifically to cover LeBron James. The Hollywood Reporter, Vanity Fair, and various entertainment news magazines have applied for credentials this season as well. They will be covering LeBron not only as a cultural phenomenon, but also as a new power player in the media and entertainment worlds.

One of the most interesting parts of the column is the reaction to LeBron from some of the more tenured members of the Los Angeles sports media. Petros Papadakis, for instance, wants to make sure he and his colleagues don’t lose sight of the fact that it is okay to criticize LeBron. “You’re going to have people who cover this with a sycophantish tone and people that won’t. I don’t want to be in the group of the former.”

Bill Plaschke is a little more defiant. His attitude seems to be one of “you haven’t done anything until you’ve done something in LA,” which opens up a whole new debate about the LA sports media. Who is making who relevant here? He told Curtis, “I thought the most revealing thing that happened was when he was asked, ‘What does he have to do to earn the respect of L.A.?’ and he said, ‘Yeah, I’m here.’ That doesn’t work here, especially with the Lakers.”

The whole piece is a long read, but it is insanely interesting. Check it out at The Ringer.

Sports Online

New York Sports Media Reacts To Mets’ Gigantic Max Scherzer Deal

Many notable names in New York Sports Radio have taken to social media to let the world know their feelings on the move by the Mets.

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The New York Mets have agreed with pitcher Max Scherzer on a three-year deal that is worth an obscene amount of money. The excitement around the team feels to be at a new high in the city of New York.

Many notable names in New York sports radio have taken to social media to let the world know their feelings on the move by the Mets.

There is no understating the significance of this move by the New York Mets. Max Scherzer is a three-time Cy Young winner and one of the most prolific pitchers in the sport for the last decade, winning 190 games over his 13-year career.

It is worth noting however that the Mets have had a notorious history of giving out bad contracts to veteran players, with players like Pedro Martinez, Bobby Bonilla, and Mo Vaughn just to name a few as examples.

This is just one of many big signings that the Mets have already made this offseason. They have already added Starling Marte, Eduardo Escobar, and Mark Canha to the team as well.

Max Scherzer will be making $130 million over the duration of the three-year contract. The $43.33 million average annual salary sets a record, surpassing the $36 million New York Yankees pitcher Gerrit Cole is averaging after signing a nine-year, $324 million contract in 2019.

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Sports Online

Dan Le Batard Trolls Skip Bayless After Cowboys Loss

“It is hard to understand why such a video exists. It isn’t hard to understand why it ended up on Le Batard’s Twitter feed.”

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When the Cowboys lose or when LeBron James wins, social media comes for sports media’s most notorious hater. After the Dallas Cowboys fell in overtime on Thanksgiving night, Dan Le Batard was among those with Skip Bayless squarely in their crosshairs.

Le Batard posted a video of Bayless dancing in an Ezekiel Elliot jersey with no comment.

It is hard to understand why such a video exists. It isn’t hard to understand why it ended up on Le Batard’s Twitter feed. No one loves poking fun at the industry or his colleagues more than Dan Le Batard and Skip Bayless is ripe for parody.

Whether or not Bayless takes it personally remains to be seen. There have been stories in the past of the FS1 host wanting those that make fun of him disciplined. We have even seen evidence of him being thin-skinned show up on television. Still, it is hard to imagine that he doesn’t know this comes with the territory of the place in sports media he has chosen to occupy.

The loss drops the Cowboys to 7-4, which is still good enough to keep Dallas in first place in the NFC East by a healthy margin. Skip Bayless may be a dyed-in-the-wool Cowboys fan, but surely a regular season loss didn’t ruin his holiday.

For Le Batard though, content will always be king and that video certainly is content.

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Sports Online

Judge Puts Stop To Sports Betting Agreement In Florida

“Dabney Friedrich, the judge in the case, ruled that the deal and the app violate the federal Indian Gaming Regulatory Act.”

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Never say never as the saying goes, but there have to be plenty of disappointed people and companies in Florida. Late Monday night, a federal judge dealt a major blow to the Seminole Compact, an agreement between the State and the Seminole Tribe, which allowed gamblers to place bets in Florida on games.

The Seminole Compact gave the tribe control over sports gambling in the state. In return, its leaders agreed to pay the state $2.6 billion for the monopoly. Through the use of a mobile app, bettors could make their wagers from anywhere in the state.

Dabney Friedrich, the judge in the case, ruled that the deal and the app violate the federal Indian Gaming Regulatory Act. It requires that any state-sanctioned gambling must take place on tribal land.

Servers receiving the bets are on Seminole tribal land, which the tribe argues satisfies the requirements of the IGRA. Friedrich dismissed that argument.

As of Tuesday, the Seminole Tribe had not shut down its app and was still taking bets. The tribe and its attorneys have filed an appeal, but it obviously has not been heard or ruled on yet. That puts any bets placed on the app between Tuesday and when it comes down on some seriously shaky legal ground.

It is likely that the Seminoles will have plenty of advocates. Local media groups had already enacted plans to take in gambling money, and certainly Florida Governor Ron DeSantis, who signed the Seminole Compact, supports it. Time will tell what an appeals court will decide and how the state will deal with the mobile app remaining in operation after Judge Friedrich’s initial ruling.

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