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April 26, 2012
Fall launch of 24-hour ESPN Deportes station and a new timeslot for Stephen A. Smith and Ryan Ruocco among upcoming changes
Beginning at 12:01 a.m. on April 30, 2012, ESPN Radio New York (1050 AM) will be heard on 98.7 FM as a result of an agreement between ESPN Audio and 98.7’s owner, Emmis Communications. ESPN New York 98.7 is New York’s first 24/7 sports talk station on the FM band.
For now, 98.7 FM and 1050 AM will simulcast content but plans are to turn 1050 AM into an ESPN Deportes New York Radio owned operation in conjunction with Hispanic Heritage month (Sept. 15 – Oct. 15).
The addition of 98.7 FM in metropolitan New York reinforces ESPN Audio’s strategy to pursue FM distribution for its content. Of ESPN’s 364 full-time affiliates, 137 are positioned on the FM band, representing a growth rate of 120% in the last two and a half years. FM stations make up 30% of ESPN’s total affiliate base (not all are full-time).
“Opportunities like this don’t come along too often and it’s tremendous that we were able to conclude a deal that will enhance our mission of serving sports fans in not just English but Spanish as well,” said Traug Keller, ESPN Senior Vice President/Production, Business Divisions. “Come Fall, Spanish-speaking New Yorkers will have their first 24/7 sports talk radio station.”
ESPN New York launched 11 years ago and will now feature a local weekday line-up that will remain mostly unchanged with Maxed Out in the Morning with Jared Max (4-6 a.m. ET), Mike Lupica (Noon-1 p.m.), Stephen A. Smith and Ryan Ruocco (1-3 p.m.) and The Michael Kay Show (3-6 p.m.). Patrick McEnroe will also have a Saturday show on the station from 10 a.m. to Noon, beginning May 5.
The Stephen A. Smith and Ryan Ruocco Show is a new offering and capitalizes on Stephen A.’s widespread popularity on ESPN New York platforms and as a regular opposite Skip Bayless on ESPN’s First Take (ESPN2, weekdays, 10 a.m.)
National shows, Mike & Mike in the Morning (6-10 a.m.) and The Herd with Colin Cowherd (10 a.m.-Noon), remain on ESPN New York and both continue to see increased listenership and penetration in the market. February’s ratings indicate ESPN New York has had five straight months with at least a 3.0 share, good for 12th place in the market with a 3.1, up 35% year to year.
“This move to the FM dial is in keeping with the industry trend of sports radio shifting (from AM) and offers an even broader reach for our content,” said Dave Roberts, ESPN Radio New York Vice President and General Manager. “By combining the FM reach with our wide variety of digital offerings from ESPN Audio, we are uniquely positioned to provide coverage of all of New York’s sports.”
NOTE: A teleconference for media with Traug Keller, Freddy Rolon (ESPN Deportes) and Dave Roberts will be held at 1 p.m. ET on Thursday, April 26. Dial in info:
Participants may call, 800-768-6544 or 785-830-7990 and reference Conference ID, 9480821
About ESPN New York
ESPN New York 1050 is the flagship station of ESPN Radio, providing sports talk, news and local and national play-by-play coverage. It’s the official radio home of three of the New York market’s most iconic teams: New York Knicks, New York Rangers and New York Jets game broadcasts in addition to national rights for the entire NBA season from tip through The Finals, Major League Baseball from Opening Day through the World Series, college football including the BCS title game, the USGA’s U.S. Open and the 2014 FIFA World Cup. ESPN New York is also streamed live at www.ESPNNewYork.com.
About ESPN Audio
ESPN Audio is comprised of the country’s largest sports radio network, featured event programming, ESPN Deportes, ESPNRadio.com and ESPN Podcasts.
ESPN Radio provides more than 9,000 hours of talk and event content annually to 24 million listeners a week on more than 700 stations, including owned stations in New York, Los Angeles, Chicago and Dallas, and more than 300 full-time affiliates. ESPN Radio offers the only all-sports Spanish radio network, ESPN Deportes, which has 45 affiliates with stations in nine of the top 10 Hispanic markets. ESPNRadio.com is the most listened to live stream of any terrestrial broadcaster in the world – reaching more than three million unique users per month (source: Omniture) and one million unique listeners per month (source: Ando Media). In addition, ESPN Podcasts are downloaded more than 358 million times per year from the ESPN PodCenter and iTunes. This includes The B.S. Report with Bill Simmons, which logged more than 92 million downloads in 2011.
Contact: David Scott at 860-766-2360 or [email protected]