Is Manny Pacquiao the last boxing superstar? Once he retires and goes home to the Philippines to concentrate on his political career, it’s hard to believe the sport will ever regain much relevance.
Certainly, the latest sign of its struggles is Don King has turned to little-known WealthTV as an outlet to air a championship fight next month. That’s a cable network in 12 million homes, which seems to have received the most headlines when it opposed the Comcast/NBCUniversal merger.
It lost that fight.
As the UFC continues to knockout boxing and becomes a major presence on Fox networks, it’s time for “Insights & Insanity.”
--The latest ad from Stephen Colbert’s SuperPAC is reasonably funny, but takes on too easy a target: the folly of the NBA lockout. Americans for a Better Tomorrow, Tomorrow (ABTT) will hopefully begin cleverly pointing out more of the ludicrousness in Washington – and not with the hometown Wizards – in future spots.
The sardonic ad, which Colbert said aired in the “most coveted ad spot in the nation” on a local Dallas station newscast, uses a voiceoever reminiscent of the Hillary Clinton 3 a.m. ad, which notes the NBA work stoppage has brought “another sad day in America.”
It goes on to point out that with “unemployment at an all-time high, the players are demanding more millions,” then dials up a cheerful tone with “but, the NBA owners are on your side.”
“They’re working hard to save the season, so Americans don’t have to watch hockey.”
That may be the only reason some people miss the NBA.
--As the earnings season begins in the media industry, the expected pattern of companies saying we're cuatious about the economy, then reporting strong results began Tuesday with Omnicom.
In the U.S., Omnicom posted 5.8% organic growth in the third quarter, versus the same period a year ago. Global organic growth was up 7.2%.
It would not have been surprising had Omnicom said it even did well in Greece, but that was a trouble spot.
CEO John Wren said that “while we remain cautious about the economy, we are encouraged by our discussions with our clients. Marketers remain focused on investing in their brands and differentiating their products and services and are seeking agency partners that can provide innovative ideas that help them navigate through an increasingly complex marketing environment.”
--Much was made over the summer about the departure of ESPN college football writer and personality Bruce Feldman, who co-authored a book with a football coach, who happened to be suing ESPN. Feldman claimed ESPN was fully aware of his work and he tipped them off in advance that Texas Tech’s Mike Leach was going to file suit.
Feldman moved to CBS Sports, but will resurface in the ESPN fold next month as an executive producer on its “Roll Tide/War Eagle” documentary about the Alabama-Auburn rivalry.
--While Apple TV has struggled to gain traction in the U.S., it’s apparently finding a foothold in Spain. SNL Kagan reports it’s the most popular stand-alone box facilitating over-the-top TV there "by far." It costs about $164 there, Kagan notes. (It’s $98 on BestBuy.com.)
Kagan says Apple’s ability to offer downloads of a slew of “premium” U.S. and international films through its iTunes store (about 1,500 titles) has helped drive interest.
--There was an inexcusable mistake in a TVBlog last week pointed out by some readers: Sam Cooke and Cat Stevens both achieved success with the song “Another Saturday Night,” not Billy Joel. Confusion came with Joel’s “Captain Jack,” where lyrics begin with “Saturday night and you’re still hangin’ around, tired of living in your one-horse town …”