Cartoon Network to Bring Teen Titans Alternate Broadcast to NBA All-Star Slam Dunk Contest
The NBA All-Star game is coming, and the league is demonstrating it knows how to put on an exhibition contest. The game will be preceded by a weekend full of special events, including the NBA’s annual slam-dunk competition on TNT on Saturday, Feb. 18 at 8 p.m. ET.
This year, that competition will get a special analysis from some of the most popular animated characters at Warner Bros. Discovery. In a new special set to air Sunday, Feb. 19 at 5:45 p.m. on Cartoon Network, characters from “Teen Titans Go!” will break down highlights from the contest, offer hilarious commentary, and show outlandish animated replays.
The special will also feature a dream team of animated all-stars with Scooby-Doo and Velma serving as the night’s sideline reporters and, despite Robin’s wishes, seasoned contest judges Batman, Superman, Wonder Woman, and Aquaman will return this year to re-score the event’s most impressive dunks. WBD attempted a similar experiment last year and apparently was pleased enough with the results to try it again.
“Last year’s collaboration with Warner Bros. Discovery Sports and the NBA proved superheroes and basketball make the perfect team so expect this time to be bigger, bolder, and of course, filled to the rim with the best slam dunks,” said Deena Beach, head of marketing, Cartoon Network, Boomerang, and Adult Swim. “We will deliver an uninterrupted viewing experience, yet again, for our audience and everyone’s favorite Teen Titans.”
In addition to the “Cartoon Network Special Edition: NBA All-Star Slam Dunk Contest,” Cartoon Network, Warner Bros. Discovery Sports, and the NBA are partnering to bring young fans monthly “Cartoon Network Titans of Dunk” shorts featuring “Teen Titans Go!” characters showcasing some of the best dunk highlights from across the NBA. Sadly, there are no plans to make any of this content available on WBD’s streaming service HBO Max.
WBD is not the only media company to introduce popular animated characters into live sports offerings in order to attract younger viewers. Disney is gearing up to offer a live, animated simulcast of an NHL game on ESPN linear channels, as well as via its streaming services Disney+ and ESPN+ in March.
Offering kid-friendly content is key for media companies and streamers, as parents are faced with more and more choices for keeping their kids entertained. Netflix recently expanded the functionality of its “Mystery Box” feature, which helps parents and children discover new content appropriate for young viewers.
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