Watching Bill Walton analyze a college basketball game on ESPN reminds me of the Forest Gump quote: “Life is like a box of chocolates. You never know what you’re gonna get.” With Walton, you get a mix of basketball knowledge, entertainment, and everything in between.
Recently, Walton did an interview with Christopher Kamrani of The Athletic (subscription required). Walton revealed that after games in which he feels he did not have a good broadcast, he has a tough time sleeping.
“If I can only figure out what I’m doing as a ‘professional,’ I would feel a lot better about myself…This business is very much like being a player, but it’s very much like being a college student in that you study all the time and you have oral examinations on a very regular basis that you have to score near-perfect on if you want to keep going. But like when you’re a player, you make mistakes, which I did a lot tonight, and I won’t sleep tonight. “
Later in the article, Kamrani told Walton how people tend to view a game (usually the Pac-12) that he calls with Dave Pasch on Twitter. He guessed that “40 percent love him, 40 percent despise him, and 20 percent have no idea what the hell he’s talking about.”
“I try to do my best,” Walton responds. “I work very hard and try to make it an interesting, fun, entertaining show. When I fail, I try to make necessary and proper adjustments. I am who I am.”
One thing is for certain, listeners of a Walton broadcast get the real him for every game and that’s all a person should ask for. You may never know what he is going to say, but the unpredictability just might be the best part.
NFL Likely To Launch NFL+ Streaming Service This Summer
“A source tells Fischer that a $5 per month price has been discussed for NFL+.”
According to the Sports Business Journal, consumers could be downloading NFL+ by July. Now, just what NFL+ will be is still yet to be finalized.
Ben Fischer of Sports Business Journal reported in the site’s newsletter that live games will certainly be at the center of the league-owned streaming service. It is likely to only be available on phones and tablets with no option to stream to a larger monitor.
The viewing options would be limited. No out of market games would be available on the app. It is meant to replace the deals that recently expired with Yahoo and mobile phone carriers that recently expired.
The app could also include other content. Radio calls, team-created digital content, and league-owned podcasts are all options.
A source tells Fischer that a $5 per month price has been discussed for NFL+. The pricing structure can and likely will change before the app hits the market.
Stephen A. Smith To Charles Barkley: ‘I Worry Because You’re Big’
“You’ve always been big. But now you’re bigger.”
ESPN host Stephen A. Smith is concerned about his friend Charles Barkley.
Barkley, while in Dallas with TNT for Games 3 and 4 of the Western Conference Finals between the Mavericks and Golden State Warriors, Barkley hopped on a horse. The clip Stephen A. used in his ESPN+ show Stephen A’s World showed Barkley needing assistance by handlers to get off the horse.
Stephen A. was astounded.
“Ain’t no way Charles Barkley needs that much help getting off the horse,” Smith said. “But he did – he did!”
Smith then used the closing seconds to express his concern about Barkley’s size.
“I worry about you cause you’re a big boy,” he said. “You’ve always been big. But now you’re bigger.”
Barkley hasn’t had any publicized major health incidents stemming from his weight, but still Stephen A. was hopeful his friend might take some time and initiative to work on cutting a few pounds.
“Let’s address that, because I need you around,” Smith said. “I love you bro.”
NFL Considers Ending Pro Bowl Amidst Low Ratings
“Mark Maske of The Washington Post reports the future of the Pro Bowl was discussed on Tuesday during the owners’ meetings in Atlanta.”
The NFL is obsessed with TV ratings. It isn’t a surprise that the league may not be willing to tolerate the Pro Bowl underperforming for much longer.
In 2022, the NFL’s all-star game produced it’s lowest ratings in 16 years. Fewer that 7 million people tuned in to watch the game across ABC, ESPN and DisneyXD.
“The (Pro Bowl) game doesn’t work,” NFL Commissioner Roger Goodell said Tuesday after the owners’ meeting in Atlanta. “We need to find another way to celebrate the players.”
There are two proposed alternatives that have been reported. The Washington Post says the league is considering launching a seven-on-seven competition. It would not include tackling or full clocks. The other report comes from Ian Rapport of the NFL Network. He says the league is considering hosting a series of skills competitions over the course of what would be branded an all-star week. The NFL has partnered with DirecTV in the past to present similar events during Super Bowl Week.
No details have emerged or final decisions made. Mark Maske of The Washington Post reports the future of the Pro Bowl was discussed on Tuesday during the owners’ meetings in Atlanta.