• Loading stock data...
Sunday, April 21, 2024
  • -
    days
  • -
    hours
  • -
    minutes
  • -
    seconds

WBD Touts Charles Barkley-Gayle King CNN Show At Upfront

  • Warner Brothers makes bet on Inside the NBA star and CBS anchor to help sagging CNN ratings.
  • This week, WBD Sports had reported second layoff since November.
Charles Barkley
Cary Edmondson-USA TODAY Sports

NEW YORK – Stephen A. Smith and Skip Bayless showcase themselves as the most important personalities in sports media. But Charles Barkley actually is.

Warner Bros. Discovery was smart to lean into all things Sir Charles during its upfront presentation to advertisers on Wednesday.

The $43 billion media giant heavily touted the launch of Barkley’s CNN weekly show with “CBS Mornings” anchor Gayle King this fall.

Amid tumbling TV ratings, CNN needs a hit. 

The new prime weekly show – dubbed “King Charles” –  will allow Barkley to expand beyond sports and weigh in on other topics. 

Barkley, who will continue his award-winning run as star of TNT’s “Inside the NBA,” has said he will talk politics on his new show. But the show will not be political.

His TNT colleagues appeared on video to joke about names for the new show.

“Lady and the Tramp?” quipped host Ernie Johnson Jr. “Gail force…hot air?”

“Yeah, that’s nice. I like that,” agreed Shaquille O’Neal.

Luis Silberwasser, chairman and chief executive officer of Warner Bros. Discovery Sports, said he’s excited for “King Charles” debut later this year. 

“You can always expect the unexpected with those two,” he said.

The 60-year-old Barkley flirted with a move to renegade golf league LIV Sports. But last summer, he signed a new deal with TNT that should keep him on the network for the rest of his career.

Pat McAfee at Disney Upfront

Disney Leans Hard Into ESPN – And Sports – At Upfront

The Walt Disney Co. leaned hard into ESPN at its upfront.
May 17, 2023

In other sports programming news from the WBD upfront: 

  • Warner Bros. Discovery Sports is drawing its biggest TV audiences for NBA Playoffs in nine years, according to Silberwasser. That’s important with Warner Bros. Discovery Sports gearing up to defend its decades-long relationship with the NBA in billion-dollar media rights talks.
  • The NHL’s Stanley Cup Finals will air exclusively on TNT this June. It’s the first time outside of the NCAA “March Madness” tournament the former Turner Sports’ TNT/TBS cable TV channels have aired one of the major sports championships. 
  • TNT will add a second night of pro wrestling to its schedule with a new series called “AEW Collision.” The show will debut on June 17. The live two-hour program will air Saturday nights from 8-10 pm ET.

With the economy faltering, WBD Sports laid off dozens of employees this week, according to Business Insider.

It’s the second downsizing in recent months for WBD Sports. The division laid off roughly 10% of its workforce in November, according to Awful Announcing.

WBD Sports declined to comment on layoffs.

Linkedin
Whatsapp
Copy Link
Link Copied
Link Copied

What to Read

Stanley Cup-Keeper Miragh Bitove is Ready to Protect the Hardware

To safeguard what may be the most-recognizable trophy in all of sports, she’s never more than an arm’s length away from the precious metal.

Utah Fans Rush for Season Tickets (for a New NHL Team With No Name)

More than 20,000 season-ticket deposits have been made for the newly relocated NHL team.

Rockies Coach’s Team Plane Cockpit Visit Triggers Federal Investigation

A since-deleted video shows him sitting in the cockpit mid-flight.
Alex Rodriguez, Anthony Towns

Timberwolves’ Playoff Start Is Clouded by a Messy Ownership Dispute

No one knows who the Timberwolves’ owner will be in the future.
podcast thumbnail mobile
Front Office Sports Today

Why Ian Rapoport Lives for the NFL Draft’s Chaos

0:00
0:00

Featured Today

Everything You Need To Know About the Legal Attempts To Kill the ACC

Four lawsuits involving the conference, Clemson, and FSU could determine the future.
April 20, 2024

A Bare-Knuckle Fighter Won His Pro Debut. The Far Right Scored a Marketing Win

With Proud Boys sponsoring him, experts say extremist groups will use his success to elevate their ideologies and recruit new believers.
April 7, 2024

Women’s Basketball Finally Has a TV Deal to Match the Excitement. Now What?

A lucrative new media-rights contract could rectify problems of the past, but the future of March Madness media rights is anyone’s guess.
Mar 16, 2024; Washington, D.C., USA; North Carolina State Wolfpack forward DJ Burns Jr. (30) cuts the net after defeating the North Carolina Tar Heels for the ACC Conference Championship at Capital One Arena.
April 6, 2024

How Two College Seniors Helped DJ Burns Cash In on a Final Four Run

Two college seniors are facilitating deals for NC State’s big man.

Careers

Powered By

Careers in Sports

Looking for a new job? Check out these featured listings and search for openings all over the world.
Live Nation
Multiple - USA Careers
Adidas
Multiple - USA Careers
FanDuel
Multiple - USA Careers

No Subscription Totals? Netflix’s Decision Could Impact Sports Plans

The streaming giant says a focus on subscriber totals doesn’t reflect the full state of the company.
April 17, 2024

The Questions Are Mounting for ‘Spulu’ As Lawmakers Demand Answers

A pair of high-powered Congressmen are demanding answers about the forthcoming service.
April 18, 2024

Diamond Sports Group Is About to Survive Bankruptcy. Will It Matter?

The bankrupt company faces key questions relating to both programming and distribution.
Sponsored

Rapid Returns: How Technology Is Getting You Back to Your Seat

How Oracle’s POS technology is helping fans get back to their seats faster.
April 16, 2024

Chicago’s Sports Media About to Experience a Major Shake-Up

Three Chicago pro teams’ media rights could shift to Stadium as soon as this fall.
April 16, 2024

Caitlin Clark Drives Massive WNBA Draft Audience for ESPN

Clark’s coronation was the most-watched WNBA telecast in decades.
April 16, 2024

The Yankees’ Radio Voice Retires, Ending an Era of Longevity

The longtime Yankees radio announcer was an industry outlier in many respects.
April 15, 2024

Star-Studded NBA Play-In a Potential Ratings Boon for ESPN and TNT

The initial portion of the NBA postseason features three former MVPs.