Ian Rapoport: ‘I Am Not Reporting Anything That Isn’t From Damar Hamlin’s Family or Agent’
“I think people being careful and not saying something they don’t know for a hundred percent fact is a good thing in this situation.”
As Damar Hamlin continues to be treated in a Cincinnati hospital, many are desperate to get the latest information on his status.
The Bills tweeted an update just before 2 a.m. Tuesday stating Hamlin went into cardiac arrest on the field, that paramedics had to perform CPR and use an automated defibrillator to restore Hamlin’s heartbeat, and that he was being sedated and listed in critical condition.
Around 1:30 Tuesday afternoon, the team stated Hamlin was in the intensive care unit.
NFL insider Ian Rapoport told Pat McAfee that as many reporters work to find out the latest on Hamlin, an extreme level of sensitivity needed to be used given the circumstances.
“I feel like we at NFL Media and the network try to be extremely careful in these situations,” he said. “And I think people being careful and not saying something they don’t know for a hundred percent fact is a good thing in this situation.”
Jordon Rooney, who is Hamlin’s friend and marketing rep, had initially tweeted Tuesday night that Hamlin was in critical condition and that his vitals had normalized. Rooney appeared on The Pat McAfee Show Tuesday and clarified that his point in putting that information out there was to clear up speculation and end the spread of misinformation that may have been floating out there.
Rapoport said despite Rooney being at the hospital with Hamlin’s family, he’s not going to rush to put information out there unless it comes from concrete sources.
“I’ve heard things from people I trust, but unless I am getting it directly from his family or his agent who works with him and is with the family I just don’t know that it’s good to say anything,” Rapoport said. “Because I don’t know what it actually means and how it actually helps people.”
McAfee talked about initially tweeting speculating that Hamlin might have had a double concussion, a concussion from the hit with Tee Higgins of the Bengals and then another when he collapsed on the field and hit his head on the turf.
Pat said that obviously did not turn out to be the case, and he admitted he had the desire to clear up what he put out there but stopped himself.
“As it continues to unfold, I feel like I should give an update to this tweet because it’s not right,” he said. “But also I am not the person that should be talking about it.”
Jordan Bondurant is a features reporter for Barrett Sports Media. He’s a multimedia journalist and communicator who works at the Virginia State Corporation Commission in Richmond. Jordan also contributes occasional coverage of the Washington Capitals for the blog NoVa Caps. His prior media experiences include working for the Richmond Times-Dispatch, the Danville Register & Bee, Virginia Lawyers Weekly, WRIC-TV 8News and Audacy Richmond. He can be reached by email at firstname.lastname@example.org or follow him on Twitter @J__Bondurant.
Blue Wire Adding Podcasts Cut During SB Nation Downsizing
Blue Wire has announced it is adding three NBA podcasts that were cut during a downsizing by Vox Media that hit SB Nation earlier this year.
Lakers Lounge, hosted by Anthony Irwin, Green With Envy, hosted by Will Weir, Greg Maneikis, and Adam Taylor, and Pod Maverick with Kirk Henderson are all being revived with Blue Wire.
“We’ve built Blue Wire around being able to identify exceptional talent hitting the podcast free agency market,” said Blue Wire CEO Kevin Jones. “We were thrilled to act quickly and provide a new home for three standout local NBA podcasts.”
“I’ve known Kevin for years and we’ve often spoken about working together,” Irwin said. “I couldn’t possibly be more excited to add to all the great work Blue Wire has become known for as we finally see years of conversations become a fruitful partnership.”
The former SB Nation programs that follow the Los Angeles Lakers, Boston Celtics, and Dallas Mavericks, respectively, were able to negotiate the ownership of their podcasts with Vox, allowing them to bring their former feeds with them to Blue Wire.
The addition of the three podcasts adds to the company’s growing list of NBA shows. Currently, Blue Wire hosts Road Trippin’ with Richard Jefferson and Channing Frye, and No Chill with Gilbert Arenas, among others.
Rob Parker Bringing MLBBro.com Podcast To iHeartRadio
“I’m thrilled to be a part of this groundbreaking project – this sound has never been heard before in connection with Major League Baseball.”
Rob Parker loves Major League Baseball and he is expanding his reach in the sport. His site MLBBro.com is taking another step forward just weeks after announcing a partnership with the league to provide coverage of minority players from the past and present.
He will add a podcast to the brand’s portfolio. The MLBBro Show Podcast – The Mixtape will join the iHeartRadio podcast lineup. While Parker oversees the brand, the show will be led by MLBbro.com’s Vice President of Operations JR Gamble.
Gamble brings more than two decades of experience covering the league to the show. The first episode drops right after Opening Day on March 31.
“I’m thrilled to be a part of this groundbreaking project – this sound has never been heard before in connection with Major League Baseball,” said Parker, who has been a Baseball Writers’ Association of America (BBWAA) member since 1990.
“It’s baseball coverage with hot sauce, loud and proud and in living color. Get on board from day one!”
What Implications Would TikTok Ban Have on Sports Media & Business?
“Prominent Democrats have spoken out against banning TikTok in the United States, but the effort has bipartisan support.”
If TikTok is banned in the United States, a very realistic possibility, the ad market around sports and sports media stands to take a significant hit. Front Office Sports took a look at the companies that used the social video platform to advertise to sports audiences in 2022 and 2023.
Among the advertisers making major investments in TikTok was Degree, whose March Madness advertising campaign includes an ad that is exclusive to TikTok and stars Giannis Antetokounmpo. For the Super Bowl, T-Mobile supplemented its FOX ad buy with a TikTok campaign, while State Farm chose to skip the network broadcast of the game and spend all of its advertising with the digital platform.
It’s not only advertisers. Leagues and networks factor TikTok prominently into reaching younger audiences. The WWE, FIFA and the NBA all saw significant growth in their audiences on the app last year. On top of that, FOX and ESPN both have taken advertising money from TikTok in the past for postseason baseball and college football broadcasts respectively.
Prominent Democrats have spoken out against banning TikTok in the United States, but the effort has bipartisan support. The Biden administration and other lawmakers have voiced concern about the security threat the Chinese government’s involvement with the app poses to Americans and their personal data.
The appeal of TikTok for networks and advertisers is easy to see. Between 2021 and 2022, no social media platform showed more growth for engagement from sports fans. TikTok’s sports audience jumped 65% in that timeframe. Facebook saw 22% growth and for Twitter, it was just 8%.