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SportsCenter Is Dead! Long Live Unnamed Highlight Show On Versus!

VERSUS-LOGO

If the motto above “The Competition Is On” didn’t mean something before, it certainly does now. Oh, it’s on – it’s on like Donkey Kong.

A word to ESPN: you might as well put SportsCenter out to pasture because the media behemoth that is Versus is about to take a run at your quint little nightly highlights show. And when all the dust settles and the carnage is assessed, the head honchos over at ESPN will quiver and shake every time they hear the name – uh, well, the show doesn’t have a name yet – but when it does, tWWL will rue the day it elected to take Versus and its yet unnamed nightly highlight show lightly.

According to a report in the Sports Business Journal, Versus, the network that brings you half-assed, semi-competent coverage of NHL hockey, rodeos, Sports Jobs with Junior Seau and what would be the crown jewel of any cable channel’s nightly lineup, Sports Soup, has announced plans to debut an hour-long “news and entertainment” show that will air opposite the 6:00 p.m. eastern edition of SportsCenter on Mondays through Fridays.

Versus President Jamie Davis likened the planned show to a “good morning show” that gets viewers “ready for the day.” Davis: “[W]e want this show to get viewers ready for the sporting night ahead.”

Uh-oh. I certainly wouldn’t question the intelligence and integrity of the top dog of a media conglomerate that for some reason thinks it is a good idea to keep Keith Jones employed, but the fact that the yet-to-be-named show will air at 6:00 p.m. and Davis chooses to liken it a “good morning show” gives me cause for concern.

Nevertheless, I’m sure Versus will work the kinks out and put on an entertaining, informative show that will give SportsCenter a run for its money. After all, we are talking about a network that relinquished the rights to the ratings juggernaut that is SlamBall to the Cartoon Network two years ago. You see, SlamBall didn’t even last one season on the Cartoon Network. That’s the kind of business acumen that occurs on a daily basis at Versus, friends. Although on a side note, I blame the ultimate demise of SlamBall as a valuable commodity to the lack of an exclamation point – or at the very least a capital X – in its name. Then you would have known the sport meant business.

Versus To Launch Nightly Show [Sports Media Watch]