Prior to the 2014 Reebok CrossFit Games this summer, we brought you the news that ESPN and CrossFit, Inc. agreed to a multi-year extension of their existing contract that ensures that the sports broadcasting giant remains the exclusive rights holder to televise the CrossFit Games. This year ESPN will broadcast more live events from the Games than ever before, and the fun has been continuing over the last two weeks!
On October 8th, all twelve events from the women’s competition were shown on ESPN and simultaneously streamed to WatchESPN.com from 8-11 p.m., and the same schedule for the men will be shown on October 15th—today.
It’s no surprise to us that as the affiliate community and the Games have grown, the amount of media attention directed to CrossFit has risen alongside it. What’s interesting (and great!) about these six one-hour episodes from the Games is that they will be shown at a primetime-viewing hour on ESPN. And in case you didn’t know, a lot of people watch that channel. ESPN did broadcast portions of the CrossFit Games live this summer, though the majority of those events were shown on ESPN3. But this fall, we (and a ton more people across the country and online) will get to see the full glory of the men and women’s competition on “the worldwide leader in sports’” at prime time in the middle of the week!
Much has already been written about CrossFit’s emergence into the mainstream media, and ESPN has obviously done their research, checked the viewership ratings from this year’s Games (as well as year’s past) and realized that it’s a good (and valuable) idea to televise the Games. Moving forward, might we expect to see the full, live competition broadcast on ESPN’s primary channel in the summer?