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DraftKings Podcast Partnership Offers ‘Freedom’ For Golic Jr.

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Mike Golic Jr. is on the move in more ways than one.

The sports-media personality left ESPN in February and partnered with DraftKings to host a daily podcast, The GoJo Show, and with that outlet change comes the freedom to relocate from Connecticut (along with what he told Sports Handle are about 160-170 pairs of sneakers that he owns) and enjoy West Coast living for a change. Going from traditional radio to podcasting provides Golic “freedom of movement lifestyle-wise, as a single 32-year-old that has lived in central Connecticut like a quarter of a century.”

The former Notre Dame offensive lineman has teamed up with one of his former Fighting Irish teammates, Brandon Newman, to co-host the podcast. As the show is backed by a mobile sportsbook, Golic and Newman talk about betting lines and pretty much anything else related to wagering on sports, and Golic insists there’s no need to wonder whether conversations about sports betting are organic or a mandatory part of the podcast.

“Have I started placing bets? Absolutely,” Golic said. “I have been for a while now. This is something that we were all doing in some way, shape, or form, that is now, easy, legal, right there for all of us in the palm of our hands.”

No topic is off limits

The daily podcast is not focused solely on sports and sports wagering talk. Golic and Newman are both opinionated and typically have plenty to say about a variety of topics — even extending to “trash TV” shows like The Bachelor and The Bachelorette. Basically, nothing is off limits.

Having this opportunity that offered freedom to chat about a wider variety of topics was part of the enticement to move from ESPN and take up an offer from a sportsbook looking to build its own sports-talk lineup. DraftKings acquired the rights to The Dan Le Batard Show with Stugotz for a reported $50 million last year.

“Moving over to DraftKings and the opportunity that they presented here, for me it was a combination of a lot of things,” Golic said. “A unique opportunity and in a space that I think for everyone, it was impossible to ignore, even when I was over at ESPN — seeing what sports gambling had started to become, seeing how it was starting to present itself on the content side of things where we had all lived.

“This is the next step from fantasy sports, to daily fantasy sports, to another way for people to connect to games in a way that it gives them skin in the game. It was that interest that was palpable.”

Like father, like son

The GoJo Show also re-connects Golic with some of his former ESPN colleagues — most notably, his pops, Mike Golic Sr., the former NFL defensive lineman who was a longtime co-host on ESPN’s Mike and Mike Show. The elder Golic also has a deal with DraftKings to co-host The Golic and Smetty Show with media personality Jessica Smetana. As they’re all under the DraftKings umbrella, Golic Jr. can have the likes of Golic Sr. and Le Batard’s Stugotz as guests on The GoJo Show.

Golic Jr. appreciates having the chance to work again with some of the individuals who helped him grow up in the business during six years spent at ESPN.

“[DraftKings] wanted to be in this space and they were serious about bringing and putting together a team of people,” Golic said. “When that opportunity presented itself I was flattered that they would think of me in that regard, but I also looked at it as a great chance for me creatively to challenge myself in a different way.”

In addition to being teammates at Notre Dame, Golic and Newman shared the same major — film and television — and were in many of the same classes over a three-year period. Before GoJo, Newman worked for other sports networks, such as NBC Sports, FS1, and Barstool Sports. Golic said he and Newman welcomed the opportunity to work together on this new venture.

The GoJo goal is to produce an entertaining, fun, and informative sports-talk podcast that will attract a loyal audience of sports fans who just may like to make a wager or two.

“You don’t have to be an expert to go in and do this,” Golic said. “You just have to be willing to be part of the action on this one. We’re here to do this the way that we do it. I’m not going to walk out there and and all of a sudden pretend I’m some baby shark and I know everything that is going on here. I’m going to tell you based on what I know, or on just what I feel in my gut.”

Media notebook

Bally Bet showcasing WNBA’s Mercury

Bally Bet and the WNBA’s Phoenix Mercury entered a groundbreaking partnership a year ago. The collaboration has now led to the launch of a digital content series, For the W, which features members of the Mercury.

The first episode in the series, title “The G.O.A.T.,” focuses on one of the game’s all-time greats, Diana Taurasi. It chronicles Taurasi getting ready for her 18th WNBA season after the Mercury lost to the Chicago Sky in the 2021 WNBA finals. Future episodes will feature the likes of Taurasi teammate Skylar Diggins-Smith and first-year Mercury coach Vanessa Nygaard.

NESN joins the sports betting show crowd

NESN is offering a pair of new daily sports gambling shows: NESN Lunch Line, airing at 1 p.m. ET, and NESN Ultimate Betting Show, airing at 5:30 p.m. Claudia Bellofatto, Travis Thomas, and Sammy P serve as NESN Ultimate Betting Show’s sports betting analysts.

NBA title predictions

FOX Bet Live’s Clay Travis and “Cousin Sal” Iacono have made their predictions for who will advance out of the NBA conference championship series as well as who will ultimately prevail as NBA champions.

Travis likes Steph Curry and the Golden State Warriors to get by Luka Doncic and the Dallas Mavericks in the Western Conference Championship, and he doesn’t see the Warriors’ success ending there. “They will take on the Celtics [in the NBA Finals] and close out in six [games].”

Cousin Sal sees things a little differently. He likes the Mavericks to move past the Warriors and Luka to lead Dallas to the second title in franchise history.



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