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Author Topic: ***EA Signs exclusive deal with ESPN*** :'[  (Read 2995 times)
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Dimmona
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« on: January 17, 2005, 08:14:48 PM »

EA CAN EAT A GIANT BAG OF HELL

Goodbye sweet ESPN football, how I loved thee...
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« Reply #1 on: January 17, 2005, 08:25:17 PM »

wow.  the juggernaut continues...
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Fellow
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« Reply #2 on: January 17, 2005, 08:26:56 PM »

Man, I don't even like football, and this whole thing rubs me the wrong way.
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FlyingElvis
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« Reply #3 on: January 17, 2005, 08:30:11 PM »

How the hell did Sega screw up and not lock up ESPN themselves for long term?
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« Reply #4 on: January 17, 2005, 08:43:11 PM »

Nail meet coffin. Although I prefer Madden and look forward to the additions, I do agree that competition and choice is a much better scenario.  This is terrible news overall for console sports.
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naednek
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« Reply #5 on: January 17, 2005, 08:52:54 PM »

Wow!,  That's what happens when you piss of giants biggrin
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« Reply #6 on: January 17, 2005, 08:55:17 PM »

Im sitting here wondering if ESPN hadnt taken such a huge chunk of Madden business this year, WOULD THIS HAVE HAPPENED? I read some crazy numbers that ESPN really hurt the Madden Series this year..

So it seems like Rage eh?
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« Reply #7 on: January 17, 2005, 09:19:11 PM »

the way the article paints, it, it was ESPN who ditched Sega, and went with EA.  I'd do that too, after knowing, they have the NFL rights.

All EA needs to do is hire the SEga crew, just for graphics, and keep the programming to the Madden crew.  Ultimate Perfect Football
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gellar
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« Reply #8 on: January 17, 2005, 09:42:17 PM »

Holy sweet jesus.

Sega didn't have a long term deal with ESPN?  Their sole and only brand?  MORONS.

EA has just proven that it's about... oh, say 1000000000000x smarter than Sega.

gellar
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« Reply #9 on: January 17, 2005, 09:45:53 PM »

And the beat goes on!

I just hope Madden isn't the same pile of crap it was this year!
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« Reply #10 on: January 17, 2005, 10:13:31 PM »

Thanks to my #gg homie Chris Grenard for this little image:

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Dimmona
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« Reply #11 on: January 17, 2005, 10:19:30 PM »

The only way out of this is for the next headline to read "EA acquires Visual Concepts".
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« Reply #12 on: January 17, 2005, 10:46:43 PM »

Although this could be good news... ESPN Football is now still a possibility.  Madden football may just go away!

However that doesnt change the fact that EA is a giant ballooning black hole sucking in everything else.
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Dimmona
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« Reply #13 on: January 17, 2005, 11:39:15 PM »

Quote from: "gellar"

EA has just proven that it's about... oh, say 1000000000000x smarter than Sega.


Its not 1000000000000x than Sega, it's 1000000000000x richer.
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« Reply #14 on: January 17, 2005, 11:40:47 PM »

Quote from: "Dimmona"
Quote from: "gellar"

EA has just proven that it's about... oh, say 1000000000000x smarter than Sega.


Its not 1000000000000x than Sega, it's 1000000000000x richer.


You mean to tell me Sega couldn't coerce ESPN to sign an exclusive deal prior to this?  Or that the deal was for just 2 years?  Either way, it was dumb.  Thinking the trademark was safe when EA is right there with teh big wallet is horrendously stupid.

gellar
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Jumangi
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« Reply #15 on: January 18, 2005, 12:09:15 AM »

Don't know if its stupid. Does Sega have a reason to continue with ESPN after EA got the NFL. A pro football game with ESPN in the title but with everything else made up doesn't make much sense to me from a marketing standpoint. And with EA maybe going after the NBA and such again the ESPN licsense doesn't have much meaning for them if they loose all of the official deals with the major leagues.
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gellar
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« Reply #16 on: January 18, 2005, 12:27:19 AM »

Quote from: "Jumangi"
Don't know if its stupid. Does Sega have a reason to continue with ESPN after EA got the NFL. A pro football game with ESPN in the title but with everything else made up doesn't make much sense to me from a marketing standpoint. And with EA maybe going after the NBA and such again the ESPN licsense doesn't have much meaning for them if they loose all of the official deals with the major leagues.


My reading of that article is that now EA owns the right for ESPN EVERYTHING, which is what baffles me about the move.  I agree with you that if it was just football, Sega could've easily let it drop.  But with the other sports... it's just insanely stupid.

gellar
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« Reply #17 on: January 18, 2005, 12:39:56 AM »

from ESPN.com

http://sports.espn.go.com/espn/sportsbusiness/news/story?id=1969067

Quote
On Monday, ESPN and EA announced a 15-year integrated marketing agreement that will allow for all of EA's sports franchises to have access to the network's programming and personalities.
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Dimmona
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« Reply #18 on: January 18, 2005, 01:18:20 AM »

Quote from: "gellar"
Quote from: "Dimmona"
Quote from: "gellar"

EA has just proven that it's about... oh, say 1000000000000x smarter than Sega.


Its not 1000000000000x than Sega, it's 1000000000000x richer.


You mean to tell me Sega couldn't coerce ESPN to sign an exclusive deal prior to this?  Or that the deal was for just 2 years?  Either way, it was dumb.  Thinking the trademark was safe when EA is right there with teh big wallet is horrendously stupid.

gellar


Looking back at the press releases, there is no specific term mentioned outside of a 'multi-year deal' with Sega (which obviously meant it was 2 years).  Who knows if Sega had an opprotunity 2 years ago to lock up ESPN for longer, but don't think that Sega didn't at least make some sort of play to re-up once it expired.

Still, much like the exclusive NFL deal (and impending NBA, NHL, and MLBA agreements), it was a great business move for EA.  And a horrible move for gamers.
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« Reply #19 on: January 18, 2005, 01:40:58 AM »

Quote from: "Dimmona"
Quote from: "gellar"

EA has just proven that it's about... oh, say 1000000000000x smarter than Sega.

Its not 1000000000000x than Sega, it's 1000000000000x richer.

I think the smarter part, along with the richer part both were in effect here.

I know I am of the minority around here that has no problem with EA or what they do business-wise or via their gaming empire.

EA has acted like a professional hitman lately:

1. Snare up the NFL/NFLPA license for 5 years (the NFL/NFLPA asked for bids in this case)

2. Purchase 20% of Ubisoft shares, who then thinks of it as a hostile takeover (whether it truly is or not is all up to opinion)

3. Snare up the AFL license for 4 years

4. Attempt to purchase DICE and re-offer without the 50% ownership need (January 20th cutoff date...EA also reserves the right to buy more shares)...if you doubt Battlefield 2 is a goldmine, just wait

5. Make a deal with ESPN for 15 years.

Now all of this could go a bunch of different ways.  Maybe EA is acting out because Take Two/Sega took too much of the pie or maybe it is just taking advantage of opportunities as they present themselves.  Then again, there is another thought that came up last week...Rupert Murdock could be seriously looking to buy EA.

EA may be trying to bloat it's current $19 billion market capitalization in order to block Murdock from trying to take over with all of these deals.  Diversifying their "portfolio" by buying 20% into Ubisoft and making agreements with the NFL/NFLPA, AFL and ESPN makes it that much harder for Murdock to attack.  Although in the newsstory EA is only used by name (as a high-profile and expensive route), Activision is also named...but maybe EA is starting to feel the heat a bit.  Who really knows...

Anyway, this could only be the beginning for EA this year...more deals may be coming, who really knows.
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« Reply #20 on: January 18, 2005, 01:53:49 AM »

Not really surprised by the move. I could never understand why ESPN had a show with EA's name in it while they were working with Sega.
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« Reply #21 on: January 18, 2005, 02:11:40 AM »

Anyone remember EASN?  ESPN took care of that after about 2 years...heh.  Now they're in bed together...how times change.
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« Reply #22 on: January 18, 2005, 02:52:19 PM »

Quote from: "gellar"
Holy sweet jesus.

Sega didn't have a long term deal with ESPN?  Their sole and only brand?  MORONS.

EA has just proven that it's about... oh, say 1000000000000x smarter than Sega.

gellar


They're the BIG FISH. It has nothing to do with smarts, it has to do with pull. Sega was also bidding on the NFL exclusivity.

The fact that Sega was able to dent the hull of the EA Behemoth shows they were smart. They gambled and if EA hadn't landed the exclusivity contract now, do you think they'd be nearly as profitable this time next year? What's the only way EA can stop their (arguably better) upstart competitor? Take away their ability to compete. Break their knees, sign exclusive contracts, whatever. If Sega had won the NFL contract (which was VERY unlikely) they would have had the same advantage.

This ESPN contract is fallout from that; ESPN wants a piece of the bigger pie and they're getting it served to them.

This is playing out like a bad 80's John Hughes film.. you know, where the worthwhile underdog has the shit kicked out of him by the richer jock/bully (and his friends). Except I'm thinking this (per)version has no retribution in store for the bully.

<sigh>

EA has destroyed some amazing developer studios. It eats them whole,  and leaves an empty husk in a pile of dung. Bullfrog, Origin, you will be missed. Sega ESPN, we hardly knew ye.

[edited for grammar, missed a few words ]
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« Reply #23 on: January 18, 2005, 03:56:44 PM »

Breaking news...

EA signs an exclusive deal to acquire everything and everyone.  An EA spokesweasel said "We own all you noobs."
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« Reply #24 on: January 18, 2005, 06:30:43 PM »

Quote from: "gellar"
Quote from: "Dimmona"
Quote from: "gellar"

EA has just proven that it's about... oh, say 1000000000000x smarter than Sega.


Its not 1000000000000x than Sega, it's 1000000000000x richer.


You mean to tell me Sega couldn't coerce ESPN to sign an exclusive deal prior to this?  Or that the deal was for just 2 years?  Either way, it was dumb.  Thinking the trademark was safe when EA is right there with teh big wallet is horrendously stupid.

gellar

I'd imagine the deal was longer than two years.  However, it's standard in those types of contracts that both sides have opt-out clauses at various points in the term of the contract.  The article makes it sound like ESPN exercised their opt-out after EA's exclusive NFL deal.  I don't think there's any indication of stupidity on Take 2/Sega's part.  They (logically?) assumed that EA couldn't justify spending $300-500 million to get the exclusive license.  Whoops.
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« Reply #25 on: January 18, 2005, 07:09:37 PM »

Man this blows. I loved the ESPN game this year and comparing it to NCAA 2005 (Since I dont have Madden)-there was really no contest. I mourn the loss of ESPN football and worry that madden will really stagnate with no competition.
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Jumangi
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« Reply #26 on: January 18, 2005, 08:10:40 PM »

Quote from: "Purge"


They're the BIG FISH. It has nothing to do with smarts, it has to do with pull. Sega was also bidding on the NFL exclusivity.

The fact that Sega was able to dent the hull of the EA Behemoth shows they were smart. They gambled and if EA hadn't landed the exclusivity contract now, do you think they'd be nearly as profitable this time next year? What's the only way EA can stop their (arguably better) upstart competitor? Take away their ability to compete. Break their knees, sign exclusive contracts, whatever. If Sega had won the NFL contract (which was VERY unlikely) they would have had the same advantage.


While the new pricing did cut into EA's sales they had to make a drastic price cut to do it. Would it have made along term effect is anybody's guess. Now we won't know.
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« Reply #27 on: January 18, 2005, 08:30:23 PM »

Next up - EA announces it has acquired exclusive rights to swords.

Doh.
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gellar
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« Reply #28 on: January 18, 2005, 10:05:52 PM »

Quote from: "Hrothgar"
Quote from: "gellar"
Quote from: "Dimmona"
Quote from: "gellar"

EA has just proven that it's about... oh, say 1000000000000x smarter than Sega.


Its not 1000000000000x than Sega, it's 1000000000000x richer.


You mean to tell me Sega couldn't coerce ESPN to sign an exclusive deal prior to this?  Or that the deal was for just 2 years?  Either way, it was dumb.  Thinking the trademark was safe when EA is right there with teh big wallet is horrendously stupid.

gellar

I'd imagine the deal was longer than two years.  However, it's standard in those types of contracts that both sides have opt-out clauses at various points in the term of the contract.  The article makes it sound like ESPN exercised their opt-out after EA's exclusive NFL deal.  I don't think there's any indication of stupidity on Take 2/Sega's part.  They (logically?) assumed that EA couldn't justify spending $300-500 million to get the exclusive license.  Whoops.


I just don't like how they hitched their name to and built on a brand that they didn't have locked up.  All of the price cuts, all of the name recognition that they gained this year are gone for not because ESPN bailed on them.  It was just a poor business strategy.

gellar
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« Reply #29 on: January 19, 2005, 05:18:56 PM »

Quote from: "Jumangi"
Quote from: "Purge"


While the new pricing did cut into EA's sales they had to make a drastic price cut to do it. Would it have made along term effect is anybody's guess. Now we won't know.


ESPN NFL 2K5 was voted ( by IGN* editors and readers alike) as sports game of the year. Sega/take2 had announced the price cut for 1 year to gain market exposure and to give gamers an affordable choice. Madden's price was dropped to match, and ESPN was still making headway.

Lets face it, every year the games barely change with exception to changes within the league itself. I'd like to see these games come out with a 2k5, and in 2k6 they release a $10 game disk with a roster update. 2k7 should then be a full game with hardware changes. It makes the product MUCH more attractive, IMHO.

Won't be happening now. <sigh>

*not that I'm a big of IGN; I just noticed the article today.
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« Reply #30 on: January 19, 2005, 05:46:34 PM »

Wouldn't disagree with that. Never understood myself people who would pay $50 every year for minor changes. I think $20 is fair for the inbetween new console generations versions of the games with a full $50 price when its updated for those new consoles. With EA having the lock though we will never see that.
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« Reply #31 on: January 19, 2005, 05:55:00 PM »

Just one question:

What does this mean for ESPN NHL 2K6 & beyond?

I imagine they could improve on NHL 2K5, minus the ESPN stuff.  I just hope EA doesn't purchase the rights to the NHL and NHLPA because their hockey games suck big time.

Well, that is also assuming that the NHL still exists.

On a side note.  Here is my solution to the NHL labor dispute problems:

Disband the Rangers & Flyers.  Good for nothing teams! :wink:
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