Friday September 22, 2023
The Best Employers in Sports Survey is Now Open!

SlamBall Is Finally Back. But Can It Stick?

  • SlamBall returned to action in Las Vegas this weekend on ESPN platforms.
  • It remains to be seen the the hybrid sport can sustain a consistent following.
David Becker/Getty Images for SlamBall
Front Office Sports Today

Could Promotion-Relegation work in College Football?

The proposal aims to create an exciting media product while reducing travel for non-football sports.
Listen Now
September 21, 2023 | Podcast
Copy Link
Link Copied
Link Copied

SlamBall has officially made its much-awaited return to the sports landscape.

A tripleheader of 20-minute games kicked off the action on ESPN Friday night — followed by several more matchups that night and throughout the weekend on ESPN+. SlamBall is indeed receiving a rights fee from ESPN as part of the two-year media rights contract.

The relatively small crowds at Cox Pavilion in Las Vegas appeared mostly subdued as the basketball/football combo sport came back to life after a 20-year hiatus. The venue that hosted the weekend’s games normally has a capacity of about 2,500 for UNLV women’s basketball games.

Former NBA player Nate Robinson was among ESPN’s announcing team that tried to make sense of the hybrid competition for viewers at home. Ratings have not been released and it’s unclear how much of an impact SlamBall made in its return. Recaps and reviews of the weekend’s action are limited online, and no SlamBall content seemed to be making any dramatic effects on social media. 

SlamBall is scheduled to play more games each of the next four weekends. ESPN2 will show three games each weekend, and ESPN+ will carry the remainder until the playoffs return to the main ESPN channel in mid-August.

The league has raised $11 million in funding to get back in action with support from major inventors like Michael Rubin and David Blitzer.

Copy Link
Link Copied
Link Copied

What to Read


Andlauer Completes Record $950M Senators Acquisition

Long-awaited pact follows three months of due diligence, league review

FIFA, Kroenke Clash Over SoFi Stadium's World Cup Revenue Sharing

SoFi Stadium's hosting of World Cup matches may be in jeopardy.

TKO Makes First Big Move After WWE-UFC Merger

Investors drop TKO shares by 15% following SmackDown rights deal
LIV Golf flag pin

Saudi Prince Dismisses Sportswashing Claims Post Newcastle, LIV Golf

Saudi Arabia’s Crown Prince Mohammed bin Salman is bullish on sports.
podcast thumbnail mobile
Front Office Sports Today

Could Promotion-Relegation work in College Football?


Featured Today

Teams without secured venue situations could be left out of a potential XFL-USFL merger.

XFL-USFL Merger Could Drop Teams, Change League Name

Teams without secured venues could be cut from a XFL-USFL merger.
September 21, 2023

Rupert Murdoch's Exit Leaves Lasting Fox Sports Legacy

Rupert Murdoch steps down as chairman of Fox Corp. and News Corp.
Could ESPN lose events such as the NBA Finals if it sold ABC.
September 21, 2023

Selling ABC Poses Billion-Dollar Dilemma for Disney and ESPN's Future

Losing ABC would create complications as ESPN enters NBA rights negotiations.
Boise State Broncos running back Ashton Jeanty (2) runs the ball against the North Dakota Fighting Hawks during the first half at Albertsons Stadium.
September 20, 2023

The First Official Proposal for Promotion-Relegation In College Football

Realignment is forcing Group of 5 schools to rethink their structure.


Powered By

Careers in Sports

Looking for a new job? Check out these featured listings and search for openings all over the world.
Chicago Cubs
New York
Tri Star Sports and Entertainment Group, Inc.
USA - Multiple Locations

U.S. Cricket Ambitions Get Big-Time Boost

ICC to stage major tournament in New York, Dallas, and Miami
September 19, 2023

Saudi Pro League Has Long Way To Go Despite Spending Spree

The league's revenue still trails far behind its European counterparts.
September 19, 2023

Latest NFL-NFLPA Drama Spotlights Fake Injury Accusations

The NFL has alleged that the NFLPA told running backs to fake injuries.
The Rock’s XFL and the Fox-owned USFL are expected to combine into one spring football league.
September 19, 2023

XFL, USFL Reportedly Expected to Merge Before 2024 Season

Disney and Fox reportedly will likely split the combined league's broadcasts.
Commissioner Jessica Berman expects the NWSL to reach 16 teams in 2026 with two expansion clubs.
September 18, 2023

NWSL Reportedly Taps Boston For Expansion Team Beginning in 2026

New club set to begin play in 2026
September 18, 2023

NFL Prioritizes Minority Representation Amid Ownership Changes

The league does not have a majority team owner who is Black.
Chelsea player Guro Reiten completes pass during game
September 18, 2023

How WSL Plans to Become First $1B Women's Soccer League

England's top women's competition has ambitious goals.
September 18, 2023

MLB Expansion Potentially Draws Closer With Rays Ballpark Deal

Rays' stadium deal looks to solve long-running problem for MLB