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Apple May Have Eye On Sports With VR Acquisition

“NexVR provides content to VR headsets and already has a deal in place with the NBA.”

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Apple became a player in the content game and the streaming wars with the introduction of Apple+ last year. It has been no secret that in addition to scripted shows, the company would like to have control of live sports rights as well. It’s been previously reported that the company has already reached out to the PAC-12 about acquiring the conference’s primary media rights when current deals with ESPN and FOX expire in 2024.

What would Apple even do with sports rights? Well, according to Pat Evans of Front Office Sports, its recent acquisition of NextVR may provide some answers.

NextVR provides content to VR headsets and already has a deal in place with the NBA. If Apple was really thinking ahead to 2024 and wanting to make sure that it had a new, progressive plan for the PAC-12 or any other potential sports partner, the ability to present games in virtual reality would be quite a point of differentiation from traditional networks.

The closing price of the deal was not reported, although last month 9to5Mac reported that Apple had offered $100 million for NextVR. That is just a fraction of what the company has to build its sports empire. Evans reports that Apple could be willing to throw around as much as $250 billion over the next several years to become a player in the world of sports.

Apple has reportedly been very clear with the PAC-12 that it is not looking for a separate streaming rights deal. The company wants Apple+ to be the primary television rights holder for the league. With the acquisition of NextVR it is worth wondering if that might change or if Apple might be willing to do separate VR deals with pro leagues.

Sports Online

Big Cat: Consistency Has Been Key to Rise of Pardon My Take

“Having that consistency always being there for people I think makes you part of their routine and makes it anything than I could ever have imagined.”

Ricky Keeler

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With most people having a podcast in this day and age, it is very difficult to stand out when there are so many options for listeners to choose from. One of the keys to finding success is being reliable and having your audience know that you will be around consistently. Dan “Big Cat” Katz, one of the hosts of Pardon My Take, views consistency as a major key to the success of the Barstool Sports show.

Katz was a guest on The Old Man and the Three podcast with J.J. Redick and Tommy Alter and he mentioned that Pardon My Take never takes a break and always wants content out there for their listeners.

“Just being consistent with what you put out there is something that seems very easy but gets lost by a lot of people. Every single day you are going to wake up, you are going to see me produce this, this, and this. Started as blogging, moved to podcasting. PFT and I — outside of the holidays — we don’t miss shows. There’s never a show where ‘Hey, we aren’t feeling it’. No, no, we do the shows. Even when we go on vacation, what can we bank that we can put out while we are on vacation?

“Having that consistency always being there for people I think makes you part of their routine and makes it anything than I could ever have imagined.”

While Katz understands that not every episode or every interview is going to be the greatest, he told the guys that the key is putting everything you got into every episode.

“There’s shows that aren’t the best, there are interviews that aren’t the best. It all ebbs and flows. You can’t be the funniest, most insightful podcast every single time. But, just being consistent and saying here’s what we got, we are going to put our effort into it, we are going to enjoy what we do and it has helped us get where we are today.

“You have to be a part of people’s lives. Knowing that people view you as a friend even though you don’t know them. I take that very seriously and never try to take advantage of the fact that people are investing their time in listening to me talk. Making sure you are putting in the effort and always showing up for them.” 

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Sports Online

Stephen A. Smith: TV Personalities Afraid Of Being Wrong ‘Are Boring as Hell’

“In our business there’s a lot of people who truly, truly believe the definition of entertainment is showing people what you know. That’s not true.”

Jordan Bondurant

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Stephen A. Smith knows he can’t be right all the time, even when he’s debating someone on First Take.

Smith was a guest on the Barstool Sports podcast Pardon My Take this week, and host Dan “Big Cat” Katz asked him what his thought process is like when he does turn out to be wrong.

The topic of Stephen A. being wrong with six straight NBA Finals predictions came up, and Smith said you just have to embrace being imperfect.

“The beauty is in being wrong. It’s showing that you’re fallible – you’re flawed – you’re human just like everybody else,” he said. “Do you know many people are boring as hell on television because they are literally so rigid because they’re scared of being wrong? Tell me one person in the history of sports who’s been right every time. There is no one.”

Smith later said that not having an attitude of always being right, combined with just being as knowledgeable as possible, goes a long way in how you connect with your audience.

“In our business there’s a lot of people who truly, truly believe the definition of entertainment is showing people what you know. That’s not true,” he said. “How you communicate with them is what entertains them. Sure you have to know what you’re talking about for the most part. Doesn’t mean you’re flawless and you’re not gonna make mistakes. But for the most part you gotta know what you’re talking about.”

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Sports Online

Bussin’ With The Boys Headed to Radio Row

“They tried to keep us out. They tried to keep the boys down, but you’ve got to know better when you start to play with us.”

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After a little public pressure, the NFL has decided that at least one Barstool show is welcome to be a part of Radio Row in Arizona for Super Bowl week. After initially being denied credentials, Will Compton, Taylor Lewan, and their Bussin’ With the Boys podcast have been given everything they need to be a part of media gathering the week before Super Bowl LVII.

Compton made the announcement on Twitter earlier this week.

“Fortunately, the right people got on the phone,” he told Bussin’ With the Boys fans. “I don’t know if somebody nudged Roger in the hallway and was like ‘Hey man, I’m telling you we don’t want to go down this path. We took year ten from him. Let’s not be taking away his media credential.’”

J.P. Hovey, the show’s producer, will be a guest next month on The Producers Podcast here on BSM. He told host Brady Farkas that he never doubted how this would end.

“They tried to keep us out. They tried to keep the boys down, but you’ve got to know better when you start to play with us.”

Hovey said that the end result was more than just a product of the dedication of Barstool fans. In his video, Compton credited all of the media outlets that covered the story that two players were told that were not welcome on Radio Row.

“We got the passes. We got the access,” Hovey said. “Roger Goodell, thanks for trying, but you know, it was never in the cards for him.”

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