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November 13, 2017

Heads up, sports fans — ESPN is debuting a Snapchat version of ‘SportsCenter’

by John_A

Although Snap has turned in rather lackluster performance as of late, what with a plummeting stock price and sluggish growth, there are still those who believe in the power of Snapchat. Chief among those appears to be ESPN, which recently launched a Snapchat-specific version of its flagship show, SportsCenter. In doing so, ESPN joins NBC News’ Stay Tuned and CNN’s The Update as the app’s daily shows.

Seeking to appeal to millennials, who make up the core of Snapchat’s user base, ESPN’s new program will run twice a day and will feature “more dressed-down, millennial hosts,” Variety reports. Each episode will be no more than five minutes long, capitalizing upon the bite-sized content format that has been popularized by the ephemeral nature of the app.

But despite the lack of length, Snapchat’s SportsCenter will pack in plenty of information, including the daily news and sports highlights.

Hosts for the first show will include Emmy-winner Katie Nolan, SportsCenter anchor Elle Duncan, ESPN NBA commentator Cassidy Hubbarth, ESPN Radio host Jason Fitz, and comedian Cy Amundson.

“SportsCenter on Snapchat provides a creative new format and platform for our flagship franchise to continue to evolve,” said Connor Schell, ESPN executive vice president of content, in a statement. “Katie, Elle, Cassidy, Jason, and Cy collectively bring a new style, energy, and substance that I believe will connect with Snapchat’s audience in a real way. I’m thrilled to bring this level of talent and personality to a new and innovative daily touchpoint for ESPN.”

Snapchat has had plans for content for months, having signed one of the largest TV deals in history over the summer with Time Warner shows. But in order to appeal to as broad a demographic as possible, the app is looking to program as much as possible. “SportsCenter is the crown jewel of ESPN, and I think it’s defined how generations experience sports and think about the culture of sports,” said Sean Mills, Snap’s head of content. “Now we have a new medium in mobile video — and there’s a huge opportunity for a SportsCenter made for mobile, for the next generation of sports fans.”




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