This is For The Win’s daily newsletter, The Morning Win. Did a friend recommend or forward this to you? If so, subscribe here. Have feedback? Leave your questions, comments and concerns through this brief reader survey! Now, here’s Mike Sykes.
Good morning, Winners! I hope you’re well. Thank you so much for reading this morning.
The media landscape just got a little bit weirder with the announcement that there’ll be some sports programming coming to HBO’s streaming platform, Max.
And, no, I don’t mean the sports programming we’re used to from HBO. This isn’t just Bryant Gumbel or Bomani Jones hitting us with gems on their various talk shows or documentaries about some of our favorite athletes.
Nah, y’all. I’m talking actual sports.
Starting in October, MAX will add live sports to its service under the Bleacher Report brand, according to Front Office Sports. The package is going to include live MLB, NHL, NBA, College Basketball and U.S. Soccer action. It’ll initially be free until February 2024 in its promotional period, but following that users will have to pay an additional $9.99 per month.
It’s not just one-off games, either. Max will be streaming some huge moments in the sports landscape. The MLB playoffs, March Madness, the NBA in-season tournament. This is pretty big stuff, man. And that’s so weird.
I don’t think there’s a soul out there who has ever asked to watch live sports on HBO. I’m not sure who wants that. Nobody is going to say no to it, though. The more sports for the consumer to consumer, the better. And it’s free — for now.
But that’s the concern, right? It’s free for now. But it won’t be free forever. And this isn’t just a cable option everyone has access to through their television provider. It’s something you have to pay an extra fee for.
Today, it’s fine. The games will still be simulcasted on other Warner Bros. Discovery channels. We’ll also still have access to other games on other channels, too, like ESPN.
But what about when those things go away? Because that might be coming.
There are already plenty of rumors out there about ESPN ditching cable completely and moving to a direct-to-consumer streaming service. The NFL has moved its Sunday Ticket package to YouTube TV. The MLB has a streaming deal with Peacock and Apple . I haven’t even mentioned Amazon, who already has rights to Thursday Night Football.
Watching live sports today is becoming more and more like a scavenger hunt. Our streaming overlords have slowly begun to conquer sports and, all of a sudden, I miss simple cable.
Wow. Never thought I’d say that.
We’re one step closer to the clash of the Superteams
The New York Liberty are moving forward to the WNBA semifinals after dispatching the Washington Mystics on Tuesday night.
It was a close and competitive game the Mystics had ample opportunity to find a way to win, but turnovers combined with the dominance in the paint of Jonquel Jones (19 points, 14 rebounds) put Washington away.
In this game we saw the sheer versatility of the Liberty. Sabrina Ionescu doesn’t have it tonight? Ok, cool. We’ll go to Jones in the paint. Courtney Vandersloot seems a bit off? Fine, let’s just run inverted pick-and-rolls with Breanna Stewart as the ball handler.
The Liberty creates so many mismatches that most teams can’t handle. This is why we want the Aces vs. Liberty series so badly. They counter each other so well. Not only just in talent, but also in scheme. I can’t wait to see if we actually get it. We’ll see if we have any upsets along the way.
New York find out who it plays in the semis on Wednesday night when the Connecticut Sun and Minnesota Lynx play a decisive Game 3. Should be fun.
Here’s where things stand:
- Dallas Wings @ Las Vegas Aces (Sunday, Sept. 24, 5 p.m. ET)
- Winner of Sun/Lynx @ New York Liberty (Sunday, Sept. 24. 1 p.m. ET)
RIP to the no-no
No-hitters in the MLB haven’t had a very good month. Actually, scratch that. They haven’t had a very good week-and-some-change.
In the last 10 days, four different team no-hitters have been broken up in the 9th inning or later, according to MLB.com’s Dylan Svoboda. I don’t know what’s wilder — the fact that four teams have nearly pulled off no-hitters in a 10-day span or the fact that all four have been broken up.
Here’s a wild stat, per Svoboda:
“The four no-hit bids have all happened over the past 10 days, which is the shortest span in at least the expansion era (1961), per the Elias Sports Bureau.
The 10-day span surpasses the previous 18-day record, which happened from Aug. 29 to Sept. 15 of this season and Apr. 23 to May 10 in 1989.”
The four games in question:
- The Brewers’ near 11-inning no-hitter against the Yankees on September 10.
- The Astros‘ near no-hitter against the A’s on September 13.
- Chase Anderson pitched 7 no-hit innings for the Rockies but was pulled in the 8th on September 15
- The same happened with Blake Snell and the Padres on September 19.
Look, I know. I know. Some of you don’t believe in team no-hitters. But, honestly, this just goes to show you how difficult a feat that is to pull off and no-hitters are already hard.
Best of luck to the next team that comes this close.
Quick hits: Week 4 watchability rankings for CFB … Is Swelce a thing? … and more
— Matt Scalici ranked the top 5 most watchable college football games for week 4. Of course, Colorado is there.
— *pssssstJason Kelce thinks Travis Kelce and Taylor Swift are dating. Pass it down. Charles Curtis has more.
— Robert Zeglinski just dropped his latest Super Bowl Contender Index and, Cowboys fans, you’ll love this one.
— Long Island QB Chris Howell has the weirdest throwing motion and I’m just so captivated by it. Cory Woodruff has more.
— Sean McVay tried — and failed — to explain away that weird field goal kick at the end of the Rams game to cover the spread. I now have more questions. Prince Grimes has you covered on the situation.
— Mitchell Northan has us Star Wars nerds covered with his weekly Ahsoka recap.
That’s all, folks! Thanks for rocking with us this morning. Have a fantastic Wednesday. Let’s chat again tomorrow.