MSG Networks Ups Their Game, Adds New Complex Shows

When you think MSG Networks — MSG Network (MSG), MSG+ and MSG Go — you think sports.

The networks are home to 10 professional sports teams, including the New York Knicks, New York Rangers, New York Islanders, New York Giants, Buffalo Bills and New York Liberty.

It’s where viewers go to get their game on.

But by expanding a content partnership with Complex Network, it brings more of Complex’s digital shows, geared to 18-24 males, to cable TV. Complex Networks claims to generate over 810 million video views a month across its digital channels, such as Complex, First We Feast, Pigeons and Planes, and Sole Collector.



And MSG wants a piece of the action.

The new episodes will air as part of the network's “MSG Shorts” programming, following select Knicks, Rangers, Islanders and New Jersey Devils games this year.

There will be new episodes from six of Complex’s original series, including two of its flagship shows — “Sneaker Shopping” and “Hot Ones.” The series have already earned millions of views on and YouTube, per the company.

The new additions push music and lifestyle, all viewed within a singular millennial prism. The upcoming shows are:

“Sneaker Shopping” – Sneaker lover Joe La Puma interviews notable music, sports, TV and film people, but all "through the lens of sneaker culture." Guests will include Lil Yachty and Todd Gurley. (Pete Davidson was the debut guest.)

“Hot Ones” – Hosted by Sean Evans, celebrities answer questions and test their stamina eating hot wings. An upcoming show features Seth Rogen, Dominic Cooper and Ty Burrell from “Modern Family.”

“Sean in the Wild” – Sean Evans explores diverse culinary worlds.

“Complex Closets” – Joe La Puma visits homes of famous sports figures and musicians to see their high-end sneaker collections.

“Food Grails” – Miss Info, a music-radio personality, travels the U.S. to see how food defines a city.

“The Culture” — Brandon “Jinx” Jenkins talks with top creatives immersed in art, music and fashion and art.

“Jobs Unlisted” — Speedy Morman provides an in-depth look at cool pros you don’t usually find in a job search.

In June, Complex Networks signed a licensing deal with iflix — one of the largest subscription video-on-demand providers serving Africa, Asia and the Middle East — to license 10 video series from the media company. Six of those series will be localized for several markets across iflix territories, with new versions featuring local hosts and languages.

Complex stopped printing its magazine last year to go digital-only; it laid off about 10% of its staff to focus on producing more video content.

Complex Networks currently produces more than 30 daily and weekly series across its portfolio of brands. The series are available on YouTube, social channels and distributors like Verizon, Fuse and Facebook. It was formed from the acquisition of Complex Media Inc. and is a joint venture of Verizon and Hearst.



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