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Bisciotti draws clear line in sand responding to ESPN report

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Bisciotti draws clear line in sand responding to ESPN report

Posted on 23 September 2014 by Luke Jones

If you listened to Steve Bisciotti’s words and read the Ravens’ lengthy response to the ESPN report accusing the organization of “purposeful misdirection” in its handling of the Ray Rice investigation, you were unlikely to feel dramatically different than you had entering Monday afternoon.

Short of documented proof of the organization securing a copy of the inside-elevator tape before the morning of Sept. 8, the saga has morphed into a case of “he said, she said” among the Ravens, the NFL, and Rice’s camp with the 100-percent truth somewhere in that abyss. Deciphering semantics, truths, half-truths, and outright lies from all involved parties hasn’t been easy for anyone trying to consume the story over the last seven months.

Most are going to believe what they want to believe by now.

But Bisciotti drew a clear line in the sand against the reporting of ESPN’s Don Van Natta and Kevin Van Valkenburg, emphatically claiming the story came from Rice’s attorney, agent, and friends invested in his appeal for NFL reinstatement. It’s a bold statement that will only encourage more digging from the media outlet — not to mention others — and could prove to be a fatal strategy should more be uncovered.

Taking nothing away from the journalistic work, the piece does present — at least in part — Rice’s side of the story, even with sources the reporters say are outside his camp. And, of course, Rice’s perspective needed to be presented, just like the Ravens and NFL commissioner Roger Goodell have offered their accounts.

Unlike a fumbling and robotic Goodell speaking in New York last Friday, Bisciotti spoke with conviction — whether you believe him or not — and appeared human, at times charming and forthcoming when encouraging further questioning toward the end of his 48-minute press conference but also defiant and even dismissive of questions already answered in a release handed out to media just moments before the session began. The decision to issue the written response so close to the start of the press conference reeked of attempting to throw the media off-track and wasn’t a good look from a public relations standpoint.

The truth is Monday’s open forum with Bisciotti should have taken place two weeks ago in lieu of a few interviews with individual outlets in the days following Rice’s release. A press conference with the team’s owner should have happened long before the damning allegations were presented in the ESPN report last Friday.

“I’m sorry that we didn’t push harder to get that tape,” said Bisciotti, reiterating the same position he gave two weeks ago. “It seems to me, in hindsight, that we certainly had the leverage to say to Ray and his lawyer that we can’t have him play on our team until we see that last bit of evidence. That’s what we’re dealing with now.”

Whether subscribing fully to ESPN’s report of an egregious coverup or believing the Ravens’ account that essentially highlights the difference in perception between an open hand and a punch — should that have mattered anyway? — and makes the organization look incompetent at best, my mind keeps coming back to what Bisciotti said to The Sun the week of Rice’s release:

We kind of heard what we wanted to hear and imagined what we wanted to imagine because we loved Ray.

Even if the Ravens can successfully dispute the severity of some of the accusations presented in ESPN’s report, nothing said by Bisciotti, team president Dick Cass, general manager Ozzie Newsome, or head coach John Harbaugh has adequately refuted a position of — at best — willful ignorance throughout the ordeal. Bisciotti’s claim that he “wasn’t concerned or interested enough” to secure the video isn’t believable unless the Ravens truly wanted to remain in the dark beyond what was already written in the police report, what was seen in the first video released by TMZ, and what the accounts provided by Rice and head of security Darren Sanders said.

It was only after the second video came to light that the organization changed its tune. But Bisciotti’s words on Monday seemed to confirm it was all about public fallout and had little to do with their own horror of what happened in the elevator being worse than they claimed to have originally thought.

“If we had gotten the tape early on in the spring, and Roger had seen it, then I think that it would have been a precedent-setting, multi-game, maybe eight-game suspension, or maybe indefinite,” Bisciotti said. “I think it would have been something significant, and then that would have been taken out of our hands as a team, and we would have waited for Ray’s reinstatement, and maybe we wouldn’t have had to make a decision right then and there to cut him if he had been suspended indefinitely.

“But I believe that he would have a better chance of being forgiven [after] eight games or a whole year after that tape came out. If that tape came out in March or April, I don’t think people would have been aghast. I think that it would have raised the ire of the people, and I think Roger would have responded accordingly. And I think it would have been a one-time shot, and I think it would have been significant, but Ray would have been in the same position of, ‘Do we try and appeal it?’”

In the big picture, what’s done is done and while there are more chapters to come in this story, there’s no disputing the extensive — perhaps, irreparable — damage that the Ravens have done to their own reputation. Bisciotti says no one in the organization will lose their job in the fallout, but that’s only if there is no concrete evidence that implicates him or any other members of the Ravens’ brass in an alleged coverup.

The owner’s strong stance Monday put his organization further under the microscope for scrutiny and investigation than the Ravens had already been.

Telling the truth or not is one thing, but Bisciotti and the Ravens need to be positive a smoking gun isn’t waiting to be uncovered to bring them down.

“If all I can do is try and correct our wrongs and do what we think is right, that decision to cut Ray was that,” Bisciotti said. “I can’t please those people that think we didn’t do enough.”

For the sake of the Ravens, Bisciotti better know he did the right thing on Monday and didn’t simply escalate a battle that he ultimately won’t win.

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Ravens issue statement in response to ESPN.com report

Posted on 19 September 2014 by Luke Jones

The Ravens issued the following statement in response to the ESPN.com report about their handling of the Ray Rice investigation released on Friday:

The ESPN.com “Outside the Lines” article contains numerous errors, inaccuracies, false assumptions and, perhaps, misunderstandings. The Ravens will address all of these next week in Baltimore after our trip to Cleveland for Sunday’s game against the Browns.

You can read an abridged version of the ESPN.com report HERE and the entire article HERE.

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Top 10 Baseball Distractions

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Top 10 Baseball Distractions

Posted on 19 August 2014 by Glenn Clark

Honorable Mention: WNBA Playoffs-Washington Mystics vs. Indiana Fever (Game 1 Thursday 7pm from Indianapolis live on ESPN2 Game 2 Saturday 5pm from Verizon Center live on ESPN2 Game 3 Monday TBD from Indy live on NBA TV); MLL Championship Game: Denver Outlaws vs. Rochester Rattlers (Saturday 7pm from Kennesaw, GA live on CBS Sports Network)

10. Oddball Comedy & Curiosity Festival feat. Amy Schumer, Chris Hardwick, Bill Burr, Dave Attell, Jeff Ross, Hannibal Burress (Thursday 5pm Jiffy Lube Live); LaVell Crawford (Thursday-Sunday Baltimore Comedy Factory); Maryland State Fair (Friday-Monday Timonium Fairgrounds); Maryland Renaissance Festival (Saturday & Sunday Rennfest Fairgrounds); When The Game Stands Tall” and “Sin City: A Dame to Kill For” out in theaters (Friday)

Let’s see how Towson’s own Amy Schumer handled the #IceBucketChallenge.

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=oUenC9orEy0

Sometimes when I’m at the State Fair I stop by strangers and offer to share my turkey legs with them.

9. Rod Stewart & Santana (Tuesday 7:30pm Verizon Center); Motley Crue (Friday 7pm Jiffy Lube Live), Miranda Lambert/Justin Moore (Saturday 7pm Jiffy Lube Live); Lyle Lovett & His Large Band (Friday 8pm Wolf Trap); Johnnyswim (Wednesday 8pm Rams Head Live), Yonder Mountain String Band (Friday 8pm Rams Head Live); Eli Young Band (Sunday 8pm Rams Head Center Stage); George Clinton & Parliament Funkadelic (Sunday 7pm 9:30 Club); Sturgill Simpson (Tuesday 7:30pm Birchmere); French Montana (Friday 9pm Echostage); 38 Special (Friday 6:30pm Maryland State Fair); Jackson Browne (Saturday 8pm Hippodrome Theatre at the France-Merrick Performing Arts Center); Brad Paisley “Moonshine In The Trunk”, Smokey Robinson “Smokey and Friends”, Avenged Sevenfold “Waking the Fallen: Resurrected”, Wiz Khalifa “Blacc Hollywood” and Benjamin Booker “Benjamin Booker” available (Tuesday)

There can NEVER be enough Hot Rod in T10BD.

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=m2CQ0FvAZuw

Johnnyswim is amazingfantasticwonderfuloutstandingbeautifulawesomeincrediblewhereI’llbewithAllenMcCallumWednesdaynight.

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=Yhg-kycwLnE

This is Smokey Robinson doing “Tracks of My Tears” with Elton John. I share because I care.

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=5A0lK8IdiRA

You’ve been hearing Benjamin Booker as a rejoiner on “The Reality Check” recently. For good reason.

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=u8VyRO2iqeg

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Maryland to host Wisconsin for ESPN “Super Tuesday” matchup

Posted on 13 August 2014 by WNST Staff

Big Ten & SEC Men’s Hoops Doubleheader Highlight ESPN Super Tuesday

16 Games Feature At Least One Preseason-Ranked Team

 

ESPN’s 2015 Super Tuesday schedule – showcasing a game from the Big Ten and SEC each Tuesday – will matchup top teams in the nation beginning January 6. The doubleheader will feature a game at 7 p.m. ET and 9 p.m., with the conference contests switching between the timeslots on varying weeks, concluding the nine-week series on March 3.

 

Sixteen games featured have at least one team ranked in the ESPN.com men’s preseason top 25 poll. Highlights:

The potential of two top-25 Big Ten matchups featuring No. 25 Iowa at No. 4 Wisconsin on January 20 and a battle between 2014 Elite Eight participants and in-state rivals No. 18 Michigan State at No. 24 Michigan on February 17.

  • ·        Wisconsin, which earned a 2014 Final Four berth, is featured on the schedule four times including road games at Nebraska on February 10 and at first-year Big Ten member Maryland on February 24, as well as at home versus Indiana onFebruary 3.
  • ·
  • ·        Michigan also plays at Ohio State on January 13 and at home against Nebraska on January 27.
  • ·
  • ·        Iowa also appears in the Super Tuesday finale at Indiana on March 3.
  • ·        Ohio State freshman D’Angelo Russell leads the list for the ESPN 100 Top Shooting Guards.

Overall, ESPN networks will offer a full slate of games from both conferences during the 2014-15 season. Full conference schedules will be announced at a later date. ESPN’s 2013-14 season was the most-viewed and highest-rated regular season ever.

 

All Super Tuesday telecasts will also be available through WatchESPN, accessible online at WatchESPN.com, on smartphones and tablets via the WatchESPN app, and streamed on televisions through Amazon Fire TV, Apple TV, Chromecast, Roku, Xbox 360 or Xbox One to fans who receive their video subscription from an affiliated provider.

 

ESPN’s Super Tuesday Schedule (all games on ESPN; subject to change)

Date Time (ET) Game
January 6 7 p.m. Arkansas at Georgia
9 p.m. Ohio State at Minnesota
January 13 7 p.m. No. 24 Michigan at Ohio State
9 p.m. Missouri at No. 1 Kentucky
January 20 7 p.m. LSU at No. 9 Florida
9 p.m. No. 25 Iowa at No. 4 Wisconsin
January 27 7 p.m. Nebraska at No. 24 Michigan
9 p.m. No. 9 Florida at Alabama
February 3 7 p.m. Indiana at No. 4 Wisconsin
9 p.m. No. 9 Florida at Vanderbilt
February 10 7 p.m. No. 1 Kentucky at LSU
9 p.m. No. 4 Wisconsin at Nebraska
February 17 7 p.m. No. 1 Kentucky at Tennessee
9 p.m. No. 18 Michigan State at No. 24 Michigan
February 24 7 p.m. No. 4 Wisconsin at Maryland
9 p.m. No. 9 Florida at Missouri
March 3 7 p.m. No. 25 Iowa at Indiana
9 p.m. No. 1 Kentucky at Georgia

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Top 10 Baseball Distractions

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Top 10 Baseball Distractions

Posted on 14 July 2014 by Glenn Clark

Honorable Mention: WNBA: Washington Mystics @ Phoenix Mercury (Tuesday 10pm from Phoenix live on ESPN2), Washington Mystics @ Los Angeles Sparks (Thursday 10:30pm from Los Angeles live on WNBA Live Access); WNBA All-Star Game (Saturday 3:30pm from Phoenix live on ESPN); MLS: Chivas USA @ DC United (Sunday 8pm from RFK Stadium live on Comcast SportsNet/Univision); Mixed Martial Arts: UFC Fight Night-Donald “Cowboy” Cerrone vs. Jim Miller (Wednesday 9pm from Atlantic City live on Fox Sports 1), UFC Fight Night Conor McGregor vs. Diego Brandao (Saturday 3pm from Dublin live on UFC Fight Pass)

10. Artscape (Friday-Sunday Mount Royal); Flip Orley (Thursday-Sunday DC Improv); The Purge: Anarchy“, “Planes: Fire and Rescue” and “Sex Tape” out in theaters (Friday); Rio 2” available on Blu-Ray/DVD (Tuesday)

Artscape is so much better when Robert McClintock is involved. For example,

I’ll bet “Sex Tape” is horrible, but it doesn’t change how much this appears to be a nice scene.

9. Sharon Jones & The Dap-Kings/Kelly Bell Band (Friday 7:30pm Artscape), Ozomatli/Galactic (Saturday 5:30pm Artscape), Anthony Hamilton (Sunday 6:30pm Artscape); New Edition (Saturday 8pm Baltimore Arena Sunday 8pm Verizon Center); Queens of the Stone Age/St. Vincent (Thursday 5:30pm Merriweather Post Pavilion), Fall Out Boy/Paramore/New Politics (Friday 5:30pm Merriweather Post Pavilion), O.A.R./Phillip Phillips (Saturday 5pm Merriweather Post Pavilion), Queen + Adam Lambert (Sunday 6:30pm Merriweather Post Pavilion); Bad Company/Lynyrd Skynyrd (Saturday 7pm Jiffy Lube Live); The Fray (Wednesday 7pm Wolf Trap), Straight No Chaser (Thursday 8pm Wolf Trap), Huey Lewis & The News (Sunday 8pm Wolf Trap), Lionel Richie/CeeLo Green (Monday 8pm Wolf Trap); Better Than Ezra (Friday 8pm Power Plant Live); The Bacon Brothers (Friday & Saturday 6:30pm & 9:30pm Rams Head on Stage); Bret Michaels (Thursday 8pm Rams Head Center Stage), Dennis DeYoung (Sunday 8pm Rams Head Center Stage); Lyfe Jennings (Friday 8pm Howard Theatre), De La Soul (Saturday 8pm Howard Theatre); Puss N Boots (Thursday 7pm 9:30 Club); Edwin McCain (Friday 7:30pm Birchmere); B.B. King (Thursday 8pm Warner Theatre); Ben Folds (Thursday 7:30pm Meyerhoff Symphony Hall); Veruca Salt (Monday 8pm Black Cat); John Hiatt/Robert Cray Band (Sunday 8pm Strathmore); Rise Against “The Black Market”, Jason Mraz “Yes!”, Bleachers “Strange Desire” and “Weird Al” Yankovic “Mandatory Fun” available (Tuesday)

Sharon Jones is a DAMN fine Artscape headliner. Maybe the best since Robert Randolph.

Ozomatli is also quite good at the music stuff.

The guy with two hands up? He’ll be at O.A.R. Saturday night.

And when it comes to guys who have the same first and last names (or close enough), I’ll take Phillip Phillips over Cam Cameron.

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Baltimore again among top rated viewing markets for Brazil/Germany match

Posted on 09 July 2014 by WNST Staff

Highest-Rated Non-U.S. World Cup Match Ever on ESPN/ESPN2

ESPN’s telecast of Tuesday’s Brazil vs. Germany FIFA World Cup semifinal match – a 7-1 German victory and Brazil’s first loss in a competitive home match in 63 games (since 1975) – ranks as the highest-rated and most-viewed World Cup semifinal match ever on any U.S. network, according to Nielsen. Brazil-Germany averaged a 4.2 US household rating and 6,643,000 viewers, based on fast nationals. ESPN’s television coverage peaked in the final half hour of the match (5:30–6 p.m. ET) with a 4.6 rating and 7.5 million viewers.

The previous best World Cup semifinal was a 3.4 rating (5,850,000 viewers) for Germany-Italy on ESPN during World Cup 2006 in Germany. Yesterday’s match also represents increases of 56 percent (2.7 rating) and 58 percent (4,204,000 viewers) over the comparable Uruguay-Netherlands semifinal four years ago in South Africa.

Excluding U.S. team matches, Brazil-Germany is the highest-rated World Cup match ever on ESPN/ESPN2, surpassing the 4.0 rating for Mexico-Netherlands (6,571,000 viewers) from the Round of 16 (June 29).

Top 10 markets for Brazil-Germany: New York (7.5), Hartford/New Haven (6.4), Washington, DC (5.8), San Francisco (5.8), Miami/Ft. Lauderdale (5.6), Boston (5.5), West Palm Beach (5.5), Los Angeles (5.0), Baltimore (4.9) and Richmond/Petersburg (4.8)

To date, the highest-rated markets on the ESPN networks are: Washington, DC (4.6), New York (4.3), San Francisco (4.1), Los Angeles (3.7), San Diego (3.7), Hartford/New Haven (3.6), Orlando (3.5), Miami/Ft. Lauderdale (3.5), Richmond/Petersburg (3.4) and West Palm Beach (3.3)

Significant TV Viewership Increases Over 2010 and 2006

Through 61 matches of the 2014 FIFA World Cup, ESPN, ESPN2 and ABC are averaging 4,233,000 viewers and a 2.6 US household rating per match. The 2014 audience marks increases of 43 percent (vs. 2,967,000 in 2010) and 107 percent (2,042,000 in 2006) in viewers, and 37 percent (vs. 1.9 in 2010) and 86 percent (1.4 in 2006) in ratings. (Note: Ratings and viewership numbers are based on the specific match windows, not including pre-match studio coverage.)

ESPN Digital establishes new highs for World Cup semifinal match

2.1 million unique viewers watched the Brazil vs. Germany semifinal on WatchESPN for a total of nearly 90 million minutes, the highest numbers ever for a non-U.S. team soccer match, providing a 10 percent lift to ESPN’s English-language television viewership.

ESPNFC.com had 9.8 million video starts, up more than 2,000 percent over the comparable day for World Cup 2010 and the best ever mark for that platform. Also, ESPN’s SportsCenter app had 3.6 million unique users, a 484 percent gain from the comparable day in 2010.

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ESPN Van Valkenburg thinks LeBron’s best chance for a title is to leave Miami

Posted on 09 July 2014 by WNST Audio

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Baltimore among highest rated markets for Netherlands/Costa Rica

Posted on 06 July 2014 by WNST Staff

·         1.1 million Unique Viewers on WatchESPN

ESPN’s presentation of Saturday’s Netherlands vs. Costa Rica match, a 0-0 tie in which Netherlands advanced after extra time in a shootout at Arena Fonte Nova in Salvador, was seen by an average audience of 5,791,000 viewers based on a 3.4 fast national rating, according to Nielsen, making it the second most-watched FIFA World Cup quarterfinal match on ESPN, ESPN2 or ABC. The television audience fell behind only Friday’s Brazil vs. Colombia, seen by 6,349,000 viewers based on a 3.6 fast national rating.

 

On WatchESPN, the match reached 1.1 million unique viewers and 60.4 million total minutes, and Argentina vs. Belgium reached 756,000 unique viewers and generated 31.9 million total minutes.

Top-10 markets for Netherlands-Costa Rica: San Francisco (6.6), Washington, DC (6.4), Miami-Ft. Lauderdale (6.2), San Diego (5.8), Baltimore (5.6), Las Vegas (5.6), Los Angeles (5.4), New York (5.4), Tampa Bay-St. Petersburg (4.6) and Hartford-New Haven (4.5).

Argentina vs. Belgium:

The earlier match on Saturday (Argentina vs. Belgium on ABC) delivered an average audience of 5,183,000 viewers based on a 3.2 rating. Top 10 markets: Miami-Ft. Lauderdale (5.5), Los Angeles (5.4), Washington, DC (5.3), San Francisco (5.2), San Diego (5.1), New York (4.8), Atlanta (4.7), Albuquerque-Santa Fe (4.5), Columbus, Ohio (4.3) and Richmond-Petersburg (4.3).

Quarterfinal Average Audience:

In all, two of the four 2014 FIFA World Cup quarterfinal matches rank among the top five matches in the round by audience across ESPN, ESPN2 and ABC. Brazil 2014 quarterfinal matches averaged 5,582,000 viewers, reflecting increases of 29 percent vs. 2010 (4,337,000) and 68 percent compared to 2006 (3,318,000). The 3.3 US household ratings average for 2014 are up 18 percent vs. 2010 (2.8 US HH rating) and 43 percent over 2006 (2.3 US HH rating).

Most-watched World Cup Quarterfinal Matches on ESPN, ESPN2 and ABC:

Date Matchup Viewers Network
July 4, 2014 Colombia vs. Brazil 6,349,000 ESPN
July 5, 2014 Netherlands vs. Costa Rica 5,791,000 ESPN
July 3, 2010 Argentina vs. Germany 5,714,000 ABC
July 10, 1994 Romania vs. Sweden 5,666,000 ABC
July 9, 1994 Brazil vs. Netherlands 5,580,000 ABC

Significant Television Viewership Increases Over 2010 and 2006

Through 60 matches of the 2014 FIFA World Cup, ESPN, ESPN2 and ABC are averaging 4,190,000 viewers based on a 2.6 US household rating per match. The 2014 audience reflect increases of 42 percent and 114 percent (vs. 2,947,000 in 2010 and 1,961,000 in 2006) in viewers, and 37 percent and 86 percent in ratings (vs. 1.9 in 2010 and 1.4 in 2006)  (Note: Ratings and viewership numbers are based on the specific match windows, not including pre-match studio coverage)

The highest-rated markets for World Cup matches on ESPN, ESPN2 and ABC: Washington DC (4.6), New York (4.3), San Francisco (4.1), Los Angeles (3.7) and San Diego (3.7), Hartford/New Haven (3.6), Orlando (3.5), Miami/Ft. Lauderdale (3.5), Richmond (3.4) and West Palm Beach (3.3).

 

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WatchESPN, ESPN.com and ESPNFC.com Growth Over 2010

  • Through 59 matches, WatchESPN is reached on average 835,000 unique viewers and generated 37.3 million total minutes per match, reflecting increases of 168 percent and 167 percent respectively from 2010
  • ESPN.com and ESPNFC.com are averaging 13 million and 4.4 million avg daily unique visitors to-date through the World Cup, up 38% and 43%, respectively, compared to 2010
  • ESPNFC.com is averaging 5.4 million video starts per day, up 877 percent from 2010.
  • In addition, SportsCenter App is averaging 3.6 million unique visitors per day, an increase of 402 percent from 2010.

Semifinals Kick Off

ESPN’s coverage of the 2014 FIFA World Cup will continue with the semifinals on Tuesday, July 8, with Brazil vs. Germany (3:30 p.m. ET, ESPN) and Wednesday, July 9, with Netherlands vs. Argentina (3:30 p.m., ESPN). Each semifinal match will be available on ESPN3, WatchESPN or WATCH ABC, and ESPN Radio.

Semifinals on ESPN:

Date Time (ET) Network Matchup Site
Tue 7/8 3:30 p.m. ESPN Brazil vs. Germany

TV: Ian Darke and Steve McManaman

Radio: JP Dellacamera and Tommy Smyth

Belo Horizonte
Wed 7/9 3:30 p.m. ESPN Netherlands vs. Argentina

TV: Jon Champion and Stewart Robson

Radio: Dellacamera and Smyth

Sao Paulo

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Baltimore again among highest rated markets for USA/Belgium

Posted on 02 July 2014 by WNST Staff

ESPN’s telecast of Tuesday’s USA vs. Belgium FIFA World Cup match – a 2-1 U.S. loss in extra time – averaged a network record 9.6 overnight rating, making it the highest overnight rating for a World Cup match on ESPN or ESPN2, according to Nielsen. ESPN’s television coverage peaked from 5:45 – 6 p.m. ET with a 14.1 rating while WatchESPN peaked at 1,500,000 concurrent viewers.

ESPN’s coverage posted a five percent increase over a Saturday afternoon telecast of the United States’ loss to Ghana in the 2010 World Cup Round of 16 (a 9.1 rating on ABC). When including ABC, Tuesday’s telecast ranks behind the 1994 final and USA vs. Brazil round of 16 matches for largest metered market rating.

Including yesterday’s record audience, ESPN has posted its six highest metered market ratings for the men’s World Cup during the 2014 event.

The top-10 metered markets: New York (15.0), Hartford/New Haven (13.2), Washington, D.C., (12.8), Richmond (12.3), Boston (12.2), West Palm Beach (12.0), Baltimore (11.4), Cincinnati (11.4), San Diego (11.0), Columbus (10.8), Norfolk (10.8) and Orlando (10.8)

To date, the highest-rated markets on ESPN, ESPN2 and ABC are: Washington DC (4.5), New York (4.2), San Francisco (3.9), Los Angeles (3.6), San Diego (3.5), Orlando (3.5), Hartford/New Haven (3.5), Miami/Fort Lauderdale (3.4), West Palm Beach (3.4), Richmond (3.3) and Boston (3.3).

Fast national ratings and viewership numbers are expected to be available this afternoon.

Quarterfinals Kick Off
ESPN’s month-long coverage of the 2014 FIFA World Cup will continue with the quarterfinals, beginning Friday, July 4, with France vs. Germany (11:30 a.m. ET, ESPN2) and Brazil vs. Colombia (3:30 p.m., ESPN), followed by two matches on Saturday, July 5: Argentina vs. Belgium (11:30 a.m., ABC) and Netherlands vs. Costa Rica, 3:30 p.m., ESPN). Each quarterfinal match will also be available on ESPN3, WatchESPN or WATCH ABC, and ESPN Radio.

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Top 10 Baseball Distractions

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Top 10 Baseball Distractions

Posted on 30 June 2014 by Glenn Clark

Honorable Mention: WNBA-Indiana Fever @ Washington Mystics (Wednesday 7pm from Verizon Center live on Comcast SportsNet/NBA TV); Golf: PGA Tour Greenbrier Classic (Thursday & Friday 3pm live on Golf Channel Saturday & Sunday 1pm live on Golf Channel 3pm live on CBS. All golf from White Sulphur Springs, WV); MLL: Chesapeake Bayhawks @ Ohio Machine (Friday 4pm from Columbus live on CBS Sports Network)

10. Ports America Chesapeake 4th of July Celebration (Friday 7pm Inner Harbor); 4th of July Parades (Friday various times Arbutus, Kingsville, Towson, Bel Air, Dundalk, Catonsville, Glyndon, etc.) Joan Rivers (Wednesday 7:30pm Sixth & I Historic Synagogue); Tammy” out in theaters (Wednesday)

When you watch “The Sandlot” Friday, please tag me in your photos. You WILL watch “The Sandlot” Friday.

9. Beyonce & Jay-Z (Monday 8pm M&T Bank Stadium); Goo Goo Dolls/Daughtry (Saturday 6:45pm Jiffy Lube Live); Crosby, Stills & Nash (Thursday 8pm Wolf Trap), Counting Crows/Toad The Wet Sprocket (Saturday 7pm Wolf Trap); Neko Case (Tuesday 8pm Rams Head Live); Ed Sheeran (Tuesday 5pm Power Plant Live); Juicy J (Thursday 10pm Echostage); A Capitol Fourth feat. Frankie Valli, Phillip Phillips, Patti LaBelle, Michael McDonald, Jordin Sparks (Friday 8pm from US Capitol live on PBS); Old Crow Medicine Show “Remedy” available (Tuesday)

I mean, Beyonce could perform…OR…they could just show the “Partition” video on the screens at the stadium…

Speaking of Mrs. Carter, Ed Sheeran does a pretty solid Mrs. Carter.

Remember how good the Goo Goo Dolls used to be?

Almost as good as the Counting Crows.

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