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Ian Eagle, Mike Been Explain Why They Still Call Local Games

“Breen grew up a Knicks fan, so he enjoys calling games at Madison Square Garden.”

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When you think about Mike Breen and Ian Eagle outside of the New York Tri-State area, you know them as NBA broadcasters for ESPN/ABC and TNT respectively. However, the people in the Tri-State have a connection to them as broadcasters for their local NBA teams, the Knicks (Breen on MSG) and the Nets (Eagle on YES). 

On the latest episode of the Sports Media With Richard Deitsch podcast, Deitsch asked them why they still call games for teams instead of being solely national.

“I feel a kinship with the organization, the production team,” replied Eagle. “That’s what keeps you going. In addition, I’d love to see the Nets win a championship and feel like you are part of that in some way…. There is this sense of commonality and sense of teamwork and feeling good for people that you have got to know.” 

Breen grew up a Knicks fan, so he enjoys calling games at Madison Square Garden. He mentioned that he calls a local and national game the same way and that the MSG broadcast actually helps him with his games for ESPN/ABC. Regular work with the Knicks means more exposure to the league as a whole.

While some broadcasters could view each other as competition, both Breen and Eagle feel that all of the NBA broadcasters have a great friendship and they end up rooting for each other to do well.

“I just know with Kevin Harlan, Brian Anderson, Dave Pasch, Mark Jones, Ryan Ruocco, Spero Dedes, whoever is doing this at the national level, I root for all of them. I want them all to do well. There’s enough to go around in this business,” said Eagle. 

“For some reason, our generation has become this close-knit bunch where we are always texting each other, trying to arrange dinners together,” Breen added. “Ian calls a game and I am texting him telling him that was a fantastic call. We go back-and-forth with everybody. I don’t know if the previous generation felt the same way, but there’s enough great jobs to go around that we are all living a dream…It’s like this amazing brotherhood. It’s one of my favorite things about the business.”

While it feels like many people try to compete in different businesses to try to reach the top of their profession, it is refreshing to hear that NBA broadcasters are rooting for each other. Breen and Eagle could always choose to go solely national, but the local connection they like with calling the Knicks and Nets puts them on another level with those fanbases. 

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Meadowlark Media Partnering With Skydance Sports On Documentaries

Up first will be a documentary series titled Good Neighbors, which chronicles the soccer rivalry between the United States and Mexican men’s national teams.

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Since launching Meadowlark Media with Dan Le Batard, former ESPN president John Skipper has said that he wants the start-up sports media company to make a big push with video content, citing an opportunity in the sports documentary space.

On Thursday, Meadowlark announced a new partnership with Skydance Sports, a division of Skydance Media, to produce unscripted sports content. The production companies will collaborate on two upcoming projects.

Up first will be a documentary series titled Good Neighbors, which chronicles the soccer rivalry between the United States and Mexican men’s national teams. The series is currently in production and plans to debut before the 2022 FIFA World Cup.

The second project from Meadowlark and Skydance will be a documentary on women’s basketball star Diana Taurisi, billed as “the definitive and authorized chronicle of [her] remarkable life and career.”

Last November, Meadowlark hired Deirdre Fenton as the company’s executive director of unscripted content. Fenton previously produced documentaries at ESPN and DAZN, with O.J.: Made in America and The Last Dance among her credits.

Skipper and Fenton will work alongside Skydance Sports executives Jon Weinbach and Jesse Sisgold in producing the upcoming documentary projects.

“Deirdre and I are excited for the tremendous opportunity to work with Jesse and Jon, who share our vision of using sports storytelling to explore and explicate larger cultural and societal issues,” Skipper said in the official announcement. “Our two first documentaries are a wonderful way to launch this partnership.”

It isn’t yet known with which streaming outlets or networks these projects will land. Meadowlark has a first-look deal with Apple TV+, but that is likely an exclusive agreement unrelated to the new partnership with Skydance Sports.

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HBO Releases ‘Terry Bradshaw: Going Deep’ Trailer: “It’s Been An Amazing Life”

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HBO has released a trailer and poster image for its Terry Bradshaw: Going Deep documentary, just over one week after the project was announced.

In collaboration with NFL Films, Going Deep is a combination of footage from a stage show that Bradshaw performed in Branson, Missouri (with singing, music, stories, and monologues), archival clips from the quarterback’s football career, and a new interview with the Fox NFL studio analyst.

Check out the trailer below:

Bradshaw taking the stage to tell personal stories and singing country-style music, with a band playing behind him, should help this HBO Sports special stand apart from a more conventional documentary with football-related interviews and clips. For example, Bradshaw’s A Football Life episode for NFL Network in 2019 or the 2003 installment of ESPN’s SportsCentury series.

Directed by longtime NFL Films documentarian Keith Cossrow, Going Deep appears to be Bradshaw telling his own life story and sharing personal anecedotes, rather than a filmmaker cutting together footage to tell his or her own version of the story. Though longtime NFL Films documentarian Keith Cossrow directed this film, not Bradshaw himself.

“As you can imagine, God knows I’ve had a lot of therapy,” Bradshaw jokes with the Branson audience, as shown in the trailer.

Terry Bradshaw: Going Deep premieres Tuesday, Feb. 1 at 9 p.m. ET on HBO and will be available for streaming on HBO Max.

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Lindsey Vonn To Be NBC Primetime Correspondent For Winter Olympics

“My first memories of Olympics were from NBC broadcasts, so I am very excited to be working with a team that has been there for so many amazing Olympic moments.”

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Lindsey Vonn will be the newest former Olympian to join NBC to cover the upcoming Beijing Winter Olympics.

Vonn is one of the most well-known names in winter sports and one of the most accomplished. She has won 82 World Cup races, four overall World Cup championships, is one of six women to have won World Cup races in all five disciplines, and she took part in four Olympics, winning three medals. 

Vonn has worked for NBC before, once during the 2014 Sochi Olympics as a correspondent while she recovered from injury. This role, however, provides Vonn the opportunity as a “primetime correspondent” in Beijing. It seems that by title alone, this position carries a little more weight.

Executive Producer and President, Molly Solomon, had this to say about the addition of Vonn:

“As one of the greatest Olympic skiers of all time and a superstar who has transcended her sport, we’re thrilled to have Lindsey join our team,” said Molly Solomon, Executive Producer & President, NBC Olympics Production. “Lindsey will provide a perspective unique to an athlete known for excellence, intensity and determination on the world’s biggest and most competitive stage.”

Vonn seems grateful and enthusiastic about the opportunity.

“I am excited to share my perspective along with my insight on what athletes might be feeling during high pressure moments,” Vonn said. “My first memories of Olympics were from NBC broadcasts, so I am very excited to be working with a team that has been there for so many amazing Olympic moments.”

Since she retired, Vonn has made the move into sports media a priority. Other than her correspondent work, she is also a co-director and executive producer of the upcoming Peacock documentary Picabo, on revolutionary American downhill racer Picabo Street which will premiere Friday.

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