Report: 12 Hours of Free, Daily Sports Talk Shows Coming to Amazon Streaming Services
Amazon is set to continue its investment into the world of sports streaming, but this time it’s not by securing multi-million dollar live broadcast rights. According to the New York Post, Amazon will be launching seven daily sports-talk shows that will air from 8 a.m. to 8 p.m. The shows will all be free to watch via Prime Video as well as Amazon’s other various audio and video platforms including Amazon Music and Freevee.
Amazon has taken something of a different approach with its new lineup of sports programming. Rather than get a big-name host or pre-existing show, Prime Video is developing its new series in-house, alongside “Jeopardy!” executive producer Michael Davies in conjunction with Sony’s Embassy Row.
“We talked to Michael a lot about this,” Amazon’s vice president of Global Sports Video Marie Donoghue told The Post. “We think there is an opportunity for new emerging voices and a positive, uplifting take on sports. We are dipping our toe. We’re testing and learning, but we are very excited about it.”
Prime Video’s 12 daily hours of sports talk will start with “Bonjour Sports Talk,” which will come on at 8 a.m. ET. That show will repeat from 10 a.m. until 12 noon, when it will be followed by the “Cari Champion Show” until 2 p.m. Next comes “Sports Talk Game Breakers,” hosted by Eitan Levine and Drexton Clemons for two hours; followed by an hour each for Master Tesfatsion’s “From the Desk of Master T” and Rennae Stubbs’ “The Power Hour.”
At 6 p.m., “The Greatest Hour of All-Time (GHOAT)” will highlight one hour from the entirety of the day’s programming. From 7-8 p.m. ET, “The Backup Plan” with Hana Ostapchuk and Jason Spells will feature highlights from the earlier shows and talk sports and pop culture. Each of the new shows will eventually be made available on-demand via Prime Video.
Amazon is not the first service to bring sports talk to its streaming airwaves. In addition to ESPN+’s variety of sports talk shows, earlier this fall, Roku Channel added broadcasting veteran Rich Eisen's daily show to its free streaming service. NBCUniversal’s streaming service Peacock also hosts a wide variety of sports talk programming, including “The Dan Patrick Show,” “PFT Live,” and “Men in Blazers.”
The streamer also added multiple hours of fantasy football content every week as fantasy pioneer Matthew Berry has joined the NBC family.
Amazon’s shows will not initially feature highlights from any of the major sports leagues. This is likely at least partially due to the intricate and expensive process of securing the rights from those leagues to show highlights, but Donoghue also notes that Amazon wants to showcase the talent that the streamer has brought on board.
“We want to push the talent and the producers to take this approach and have more deeper and interesting conversations,” she said. “Nothing is set in stone so we will iterate and adapt, but that’s how we want to go out.”
The move is an intriguing step for Amazon. Prime Video became the exclusive home of “Thursday Night Football” this fall, and it has been a huge success for the company ratings-wise. Amazon has also reportedly been in negotiations for the broadcast rights to the Pac-12 conference football and basketball slates. The company clearly sees live sports — and the programming surrounding them — as a key asset to its future streaming success.
Launching 12 hours of sports talk programming each day is a bit of a gamble for Amazon, since sports-talk listeners are accustomed to listening on the radio or watching ESPN or FS1 for their daily news and debate shows. But, if Amazon is able to provide a different approach to daily sports talk, they will have the opportunity to prove that a streaming platform has the infrastructure and subscriber base necessary to keep up with their cable sports competitors.
Amazon Prime Video is a subscription video streaming service that includes on-demand access to 10,000+ movies, TV shows, and Amazon Originals & Prime Exclusives like Jack Ryan, Star Trek: Picard, The Marvelous Mrs. Maisel, Homecoming, Outlander, and more.
The service also includes library access to shows like The Office, This Is Us, Lost, Grey’s Anatomy, and more. Amazon Prime Video has added live sports including NFL’s Thursday Night Football, PGA Tour LIVE, ATP & WTA Tour action, and select Premier League games.