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Alex Flanagan: Misogyny Not New For Jason Whitlock

“After seeing Whitlock’s opinion of Nolan, Flanagan wrote a blog post detailing incidents where she was previously targeted by his misogyny.”

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This may not come as a surprise, but Jason Whitlock’s recent criticism of Katie Nolan is not the first time he called out a female sports media member. 

Whitlock’s recent feud with Nolan garnered the attention of longtime sportscaster Alex Flanagan, who has been an NFL Network host and reporter since 2006. 

The backstory behind Whitlock’s gratuitous jab at Nolan begins with ESPN’s Maria Taylor accidentally leaving Anthony Davis off her All-NBA ballot, Doug Gottlieb questioning why she’s able to vote on the award, and Taylor defending her credentials. Whitlock then wrote a column for Outkick claiming Taylor would not be successful as a sportscaster if not for her attractiveness, which included a similar declaration for Nolan as a professional beneficiary because of her looks.  

After seeing Whitlock’s opinion of Nolan, Flanagan wrote a blog post detailing incidents where she was previously targeted by his misogyny.

In the post, Flanagan provided background and insight into the difficulties of producing immediate postgame coverage, attempting to get on-field interviews as players and coaches are running off the field. And after she worked Marshawn Lynch’s famous “Beast Quake” game on Jan. 8, 2011, Flanagan recalled Whitlock’s attempts of discrediting her ability to report from the sideline based on appearance.

“Alex Flanagan has no clue what she just watched. NBC knows that. They pay a producer to explain to her. Producer should be fired. Period,” Whitlock tweeted after Flanagan finished working the Seahawks-Saints 2011 playoff matchup. 

“Fire Alex Flanagan’s sideline producer. Sideline Barbie didn’t ask Hasselbeck or Carroll about the whole team going downfield to block on “Hit & Run,” Whitlock added on social media. 

Flanagan said not only has she never been fed a question by a producer, but for much of her career, she did not even have a sideline producer. 

Flanagan offered the following response to Whitlock on that same day in 2011, “no problem if u don’t care 4 my ? But know I’m not ever fed them. Is it bc I’m a girl, u assume they come from my male counterpart?

P.s is the barbie comment a compliment? Because as my age, you take it as one.”

Whitlock responded – “U r attractive for any age and I like that u r a “real” and not offended by the Sideline Barbie comment.”

A year later, Whitlock offered a similar assessment of Flanagan’s sideline reporting and postgame questions. 

“Talk to me about why someone at NBC/NFL Network won’t help Alex Flanagan with postgame questions. I blame her producers. She needs help. Job is to look good,” Whitlock tweeted after Flanagan finished working a Wild Card game between the Bengals and Texans. 

This time, instead of only attempting a witty rebuttal on Twitter, Flanagan decided that after more than a year of criticism from Whitlock, she would invite him to join her on the sideline to see her responsibilities and suggest questions. Flanagan wrote in her blog post that she also invited Whitlock for a cup of coffee, but did not receive a response and similarly, he’s never introduced himself at one of the numerous events they collectively attended.  

“The only thing he proved in this latest anti-female tirade is that if he had the courage to know me or any of the women he so willingly devalues, it would kill his dangerous spoon-fed barbie narrative, and then what would he do for attention?” Flanagan wrote. 

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Poll Data Shows Tepid Response To Tom Brady Joining FOX

“A recent Harris Poll conducted on behalf of Front Office Sports showed that 1 in 3 Americans are more likely to watch a game with Brady on the microphone.”

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FOX Sports reportedly signed Tom Brady to a 10-year deal worth $375 million to make the seven-time Super Bowl champion the new lead analyst for its top NFL broadcast once his playing career is over.

A recent Harris Poll conducted on behalf of Front Office Sports showed that 1 in 3 Americans are more likely to watch a game with Brady on the microphone.

The poll said 2 in 5 NFL fans have a better opinion of FOX Sports following the deal, with 41% of NFL fans being at least somewhat more likely to watch a game with Brady as an analyst.

Data shows one-third of NFL fans think the deal Brady reportedly agreed to is worth about the same as its reported value.

That reaction could probably be described as “tepid”. That may be exactly what FOX expects and maybe all it wants.

Last week, Domonique Foxworth of ESPN suggested that the paycheck is less about what the network thinks Tom Brady means to viewers and more about showing the NFL that the network values its product.

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FOX Not Interested In Joining Streaming Sports Wars

“All this fight that’s going on, sort of gladiatorial kind of bloodshed, is really for that last position, right, in the three to four services that people will take?”

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The CEO of FOX doesn’t plan on forking over billions of dollars to be people’s last choice for paid streaming services.

Lachlan Murdoch said at a time when more than 80% of American homes already have some kind of paid streaming service, it’s not worthwhile to jump on that train.

Amazon, Netflix and Disney+ typically account for the average streaming presence in a household.

“All this fight that’s going on, sort of gladiatorial kind of bloodshed, is really for that last position, right, in the three to four services that people will take,” Murdoch said at a tech conference earlier this year. “And so the billions of dollars that’s being spent by multiple aspirants is all for that last position. And so we are extraordinarily — I want to say that — we’re happy to be sort of sitting on the sidelines.”

Murdoch told Benjamin Swinburne that when it comes to the NFL, FOX’s media rights are the same as CBS, NBC and ESPN. The main focus for the company remains on keeping games on TV.

“We don’t believe it helps us to put those rights under a streaming service or free on over-the-air. We think it’s very important that those rights remain exclusive to the broadcast environment,” Murdoch said.

FOX does stream games through its app, but it is only the games it is also carrying on its broadcast network or FS1.

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NBA Draft To Get Simulcast From ESPN & ABC

“This follows the simulcast model ESPN and ABC have employed for several years with the NFL Draft.”

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ESPN is set for the 2022 NBA Draft coming up on June 23 at 8 p.m. from the Barclays Center in Brooklyn. The network announced Wednesday the crews that will handle coverage on both ESPN and ABC.

ABC will broadcast the first round in primetime. Kevin Negandhi will host and will be joined by Stephen A. Smith, Chiney Ogwumike and Jalen Rose. Monica McNutt will be reporting and interviewing draftees.

This follows the simulcast model ESPN and ABC have employed for several years with the NFL Draft.

Malika Andrews will host both rounds for ESPN. Jay Bilas, Kendrick Perkins and Adrian Wojnarowski will share the set. Analysts Bobby Marks and Mike Schmitz will contribute.

“We’re thrilled that Malika Andrews will host this year’s ESPN presentation as she brings her well-documented, widespread skillset to our main set,” said David Roberts, head of NBA and Studio Production for ESPN. “The event will showcase the scope and depth of our NBA and college basketball talent roster with accomplished journalists and high-profile personalities across ESPN, ABC and ESPN Radio.”

ESPN will air a pre-draft red carpet show hosted by Cassidy Hubbarth from 5-6 p.m. Perkins and Richard Jefferson will also make appearances.

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