Some good news: ESPN is temporarily removing a lot (if not all) of that annoying sponsored content for DraftKings following a scandal that's moved members of Congress to question the legality of the daily fantasy sports industry.
"It is a standard procedure for us to pull these kind of sponsorships and integrations when we are covering significant news, to avoid any suggestion of influence on our coverage," ESPN said in a statement provided to The Hollywood Reporter. The network added that they're monitoring the situation "day-to-day."
There's really no need for ESPN to monitor anything here, because sports fans all over the United States are getting what we really wanted out of this entire scandal: LESS DRAFTKINGS COVERAGE! It took one of their own employees to screw it all up, but needless to say, that employee did real sports and fantasy sports fans everywhere a massive favor.
Since the start of the NFL season, ESPN's airwaves have become seemingly inundated with advertisements for DraftKings, as content promoting the site has been weaved into many of their offerings, including SportsCenter broadcasts, fantasy sports columns and podcasts. DraftKings been omnipresent in sports media, and that's annoyed many, many sports fans.
Boosted by a $300 million investment in July from Fox Sports, MLB, the NHL, MLS, Madison Square Garden and Patriots owner Bob Kraft, DraftKings has spent over $100 million on advertising this year, including $24 million during the week preceding the start of the 2015 NFL season, according to Legal Sports Report.
DraftKings and its competitor FanDuel, however, are currently embroiled in a scandal some are comparing to potential insider trading. On Monday, it was reported that a DraftKings employee with access to exclusive information won $350,000 on FanDuel, raising questions into how both companies were overseeing their operations. FanDuel, for its part, moved on Wednesday to review themselves internally.
Members of Congress have said to expect hearings looking into the legality of daily fantasy sports in the near future. New York Attorney General Eric Schneiderman also started his own inquiry into daily fantasy on Tuesday, according to The New York Times.
The daily fantasy sports industry is being rocked by allegations and legal inquiries, but through it all, the average fan will benefit almost immediately: Fewer DraftKings sponsored ads for all!
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