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Sports

LeBron James’ Return to Cleveland Rocks Social

The king returning to Cleveland rocked social media this afternoon.

After an exclusive Sports Illustrated story written by LeBron James went up announcing his return to the Cleveland Cavaliers next season, James posted on Instagram.

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How Grabyo is bringing real-time highlights to Wimbledon’s broadcast

Screen Shot 2014-06-10 at 11.33.09 PMWimbledon, which begins on June 23rd is one of the most popular sporting events of the year. Tennis games in particular are hard to capture on social media in real-time because everything moves so quickly, especially on the TV screen. Grabyo, a real-time video company, “is today announcing a major deal with The All England Lawn Tennis Club (AELTC) to bring near-live highlights from Wimbledon to a global digital audience of billions.” Furthermore, “the partnership will see the AELTC share real-time video highlights to tennis fans on Facebook, Twitter, Google+ and YouTube, in order to engage social media users and drive tune-in for broadcasters around the world.”  Read more

How Golf Channel’s ‘Arnie’ Became a Social and Ratings Success

arnie_304In April, Golf Channel’s three-night event about the life of Arnold Palmer, ‘Arnie,’ became the most watched original production in the network’s history. Between April 13 and April 15, 1.75 million unique viewers tuned in – no small feat for a niche sports channel.

#Arnie trended on Twitter during all three premieres, and as part of Golf Channel’s social strategy, they created a social hub for fans to submit stories and photos about Palmer; the microsite is sponsored by Callaway Golf. The hub collects Facebook, Twitter and Instagram posts that use the hashtag #Arnie.

Based on both the ratings and social success of the three-part series, Golf Channel last week announced that they will be producing a fourth Arnold Palmer special. According to ‘The Hollywood Reporter,’ the next installment will be based mainly on fan submissions  (similar to last year’s Bruce Springsteen documentary ‘Springsteen & I’) – accepted via GolfChannel.com and snail mail. Read more

Peel World Cup Survey: TV Might Still be King, but Mobile and Social Catching Up

peel1Peel, the app that serves as a universal remote control, is out with interesting findings from a World Cup survey they conducted.

Polling over 1,000 people on their viewing habits, Peel discovered:

-54% who plan to watch the World Cup (starts June 12 in Brazil) will watch more games than four years ago, with a desire to consume more of the games via mobile and social media.

-81% of smartphone owners expect to be using a second screen device to interact with friends and families about the WC.

-Just 33% said they’ll exclusively watch the games on TV. On the other end, only 10% will watch solely on their smartphones.

-53% of second screen users will use Facebook and SMS texting to interact with other World Cup fans.

-There’s a generational divide: 33% over 35 say they’ll use Twitter to talk about the games; just 12% over 55 said they’d do the same thing.

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Fusion’s Mobile-Responsive Micro-Site Covering World Cup From All Angles

Fusion BrazilIn just over two weeks, the World Cup begins in Brazil, and cable news network Fusion has built a second-screen platform to cover everything happening on and off the field.

Soccer.Fusion.Net is Fusion’s micro-site that “creates and curates a tapestry of content from the social web that includes reactions from fans and key influencers watching from inside the stadiums, parties in Brazil and beyond,” the network says. Digital and mobile users will be able to view live match blogs, real-time standings and stats, and watch videos and features from both “unusual celebrities” and soccer writers. Fans can also download custom team wallpapers of their favorite countries squad.

“The World Cup will be the ultimate multiplatform event so for 30 days the World Cup party will be non-stop on Fusion — on television, on mobile, on social,” Fusion CEO Isaac Lee said.

Chief Digital Officer Daniel Eilemberg tells Lost Remote: “We know that there will be thousands of smartphones capturing the action inside the stadiums and at the parties in Brazil and beyond — we want to harness the power of that content and deliver it to our audience in a compelling, accessible way.”

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Montreal Canadiens, Jimmy Fallon Make Playoff Bet on Twitter

Tonight_Show_Starring_Jimmy_Fallon_IntertitleWith the Eastern Conference Finals underway, The New York Rangers and Montreal Canadiens are battling for more than just a shot at the Stanley Cup Finals.

On Friday, the Montreal Canadiens tweeted at Jimmy Fallon and proposed a bet: if the Canadiens beat the Rangers, Fallon must wear a Canadiens jersey during one of his monologues. If the Rangers win, Jimmy Fallon’s face will serve as the Canadiens’ Twitter avatar.

During the ensuing back-and-forth Fallon showed some hesitancy before counter-proposing with what is now the official bet (confirmed during his monologue on Friday night’s show): in addition to what the Canadiens first proposed, if the Rangers win, the Canadiens’ Twitter account must tweet out 10 pictures of their mascot walking around Montreal with a Rangers jersey on.

After the Canadiens accepted Fallon’s counter, the Rangers tweeted: “We got you @jimmyfallon! #NYRPlayoffs.”

Here’s the exchange via Storify, also published on the Canadiens’ website:

ESPN and EA Partner on ‘Madden NFL 15′ Cover Vote Promotion

Screen Shot 2014-05-10 at 11.03.33 AMAt the NFL Draft last Thursday night, ESPN and EA announced the return of the ‘Madden NFL’ cover vote. ESPN and EA have narrowed the field down to a ‘Sweet 16’ of NFL rising talent, and fans will be able to choose which player graces the cover of ‘Madden NFL 15,’ which will be released on August 26.

ESPN will leverage its TV, digital, and social assets to promote the competition. Fans can vote once per day at ESPN.com/maddenvote, and take to @ESPNNFL on Twitter and the NFL on ESPN Facebook page to debate the picks using the hashtag #MaddenCover. Every Thursday for the next four weeks, the winners of each round will be announced on ESPN’s ‘NFL Live,’ and players still alive in the bracket will make appearances on ESPN programming to campaign for themselves.

“Every year, ESPN and EA SPORTS continue to go bigger with the Madden NFL Cover Vote,  and there’s no better way to kick off the vote for Madden NFL 15 than having last year’s winner and NFL legend Barry Sanders announcing it on stage at the NFL Draft,” said Raphael Poplock, vice president of games and partnerships for ESPN.  “We are building on our momentum over the last three Madden NFL Cover Votes to deliver an engaging experience that puts the cover in the hands of the fans, which have resulted in some of ESPN’s most successful social activations to date.”

The winner will be announced from LA LIVE Plaza during the 6 p.m. hour of SportsCenter on Friday, June 6. Read more

iPowow and Golf Channel Partner on Social Solution for 2014 Players Championship

ipowow_lostremoteiPowow, a leading participation TV platform that lends itself particularly well to sports clients, is teaming up with NBC Sports Group’s Golf Channel to provide a real-time second screen experience to viewers for this year’s Players Championship.

This year’s tournament began yesterday and continues through Sunday, and Golf Channel began utilizing iPowow’s solution in its ‘Golf Central’ and ‘Live From’ coverage since Monday, May 5. The network’s on-air crew will be posing questions to fans during its on-air coverage, and then directing fans to GolfChannel.com/vote to vote on the answers. The answers will be tracked and displayed on-air in real-time.

“We are excited to be working with Golf Channel ,” says iPowow’s CCO, Gavin Douglas. “They are tuned in to what their viewers are passionate about, and by adopting iPowow, their viewers will gain a true voice to be able to participate in the commentary during Golf Channel’s live programming.” Read more

Kevin Durant’s ‘You’re the Real MVP’ Speech Stirs Social

Sports is one of TV’s biggest social offerings, with big games and events often ranking at the top of social analytics’ ratings. Yesterday, during Oklahoma City Thunder forward Kevin Durant‘s NBA MVP acceptance speech, the star gave a heart-wrenching thanks to his teammates…and his mother.

“You’re the real MVP,” a sobbing Durant said toward the end of his speech about his mother as he spoke about her sacrifices for him growing up. His mother, Wanda Pratt, was sobbing right back toward her son as he thanked her for shaping him into the man he is today.

And social exploded.

Durant winning the league MVP wasn’t the only honor he received yesterday.

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The NBA Community Reacts on Social to Donald Sterling’s Lifetime Ban

121210092244-nba-logo-wordmark-275-wide.story-topThe NBA community – its players, former players, and fans – tuned in today to watch Commissioner Adam Silver’s press conference on the actions that the league would take against Los Angles Clippers owner Donald Sterling. An audio recording of Sterling telling his girlfriend that he did not want her bringing black people to games was first posted to TMZ late last week.

After the tape was released, LeBron James and Michael Jordan took hard stands against Sterling, and Clippers players have since been placed in a difficult position as they try to remain focused on a first-round playoff matchup with the Golden State Warriors. On Sunday, the Clippers turned their warmup gear inside out in protest, and the Miami Heat followed their lead before last night’s game against the Charlotte Bobcats.

With demonstrative protests from players a certainty should Silver’s response had not been forceful enough, Silver announced that he was issuing Sterling a lifetime ban. Silver followed this by saying that that he had the full support of other owners to force a sale of the team. Read more

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