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CHGO Digest: Sky high interest, goodbye NBC Sports Chicago, NHL draft lottery preview

Patrick Norton Avatar
May 6, 2024

Happy Monday, friends!

If we had The Summer of Mike Tauchman last year, get ready for The Summer of Kamilla Cardoso and Angel Reese to sweep through Chicago. Ratings for the WNBA could smash records in 2024 thanks to one of the most entertaining rookie classes of all time.

The Sky, including the first-round haul of Cardoso and Reese, made its preseason debut on Friday night in Minneapolis.

However, fans planning to stream the action on the WNBA’s streaming service were disappointed to learn that the league only intended to show Caitlin Clark’s debut with the Indiana Fever.

Insert Twitter user hero @heyheyitsalli — Chicago’s favorite Lynx fan. When fans could not watch through the league’s official service, @heyheyitsalli took to Twitter and live-streamed nearly the entire game from their spot in the stands.

The stream topped out just shy of 174K live viewers and is above 545K in total. The Sky dropped the exhibition, 92-81, but Angel Reese scored 13 and Cardoso added six.

And don’t worry: Most Sky games will be televised on a number of outlets this season including ABC, The U, Marquee and Amazon Prime.

— Patrick Norton

Blackhawks looking for more luck in draft lottery

While the 2024 NHL Draft class doesn’t boast a generational talent quite like Connor Bedard, the Blackhawks still have an opportunity to add a high-end player with an early pick. Where the Blackhawks select in the first round is to be determined on Tuesday night during the league’s draft lottery.

  • The Blackhawks have the second-best odds (13.5%) at landing the No. 1 overall pick. The only team with a higher probability is the league’s last-place finisher, San Jose Sharks at 25.5%.
  • Based on the lottery’s current configuration, the lowest the Blackhawks can slide is down to the No. 4 overall selection.
  • Macklin Celebrini is the expected No. 1 overall pick. Celebrini won the Hobey Baker Award at Boston College this season at 17 years old becoming the youngest to ever win the award. The young Canadian phenom also spent time in Geneva, Illinois with the USHL’s Chicago Steel during the 2022-23 season.
  • Should the Blackhawks win the lottery for the second straight year, it would be the franchise’s third first-overall pick: Connor Bedard in 2023 and Patrick Kane in 2007.

📖 READ | CHGO’s Mario Tirabassi breaks down 50 names Blackhawks fans should know heading into the 2024 NHL Draft.

The Franchise Collection available now!

👕 GET A FREE SHIRT! | Become a Diehard and get your choice of any of the three shirts above … or any shirt in our CHGO Locker!

Blackhawks, Bulls, White Sox moving TV providers

Four years since the Cubs departed NBC Sports Chicago to launch the team-owned Marquee Sports Network, it appears the Blackhawks, Bulls and White Sox are following suit. The Athletic’s Mark Lazerus and Scott Powers reported Saturday that the teams are partnering with Standard Media Group to launch a new regional sports network once their current deal with NBC Sports Chicago expires October 1.

  • The new deal marks the end of a 20-year run for the Blackhawks, Bulls, and White Sox on the network. Originally Comcast SportsNet Chicago, the network launched on October 1, 2004.
  • Standard Media Group is based in Nashville, Tennessee and its channels do not currently have carriage in the Chicagoland. The expectation is that a new network will be available over-the-air and on streaming providers. It is unknown if this will include a direct-to-consumer streaming product.
  • The original expectation was that the three teams would partner with Stadium, an online sports outlet owned by Jerry Reinsdorf which is currently headquartered at the United Center. Stadium is not affiliated with Standard Media Group.

🔎 GO DEEPER | Become a Diehard to access Jay Zawaski’s Blackhawks Beat on other changes that could be coming to the Blackhawks in 2024.

Join CHGO across the pond!

The Chicago Bears are going to London in 2024, and so is CHGO! Put down a deposit today with True Fan Travel to reserve your spot with us!

Roundup: Caleb visits Wrigley, Cubs almost 100 percent

  • Caleb Williams took in a Cubs win against the Milwaukee Brewers on Saturday from a luxury suite at Wrigley Field with a group of teammates including Cole Kmet and Keenan Allen. When Wrigley’s videoboard showed the new Bears quarterback, the ballpark erupted in cheers. QB1 responded with his new signature bear claw:
  • The Cubs start the week tied for first in the NL Central with the Brewers, but the good news doesn’t stop there: Cubs manager Craig Counsell said the team could get Cody Bellinger and Seiya Suzuki off of the IL this week. Justin Steele is already slated to make his first start since straining his hamstring on opening day on Monday.
  • The White Sox braved a three-hour rain delay on Saturday in St. Louis to earn a 6-5 victory in 10 innings. The Cardinals had the bases loaded down to their final out when the umpires decided the rain was too significant to continue playing. Tanner Banks took over for John Brebbia after the delay with an 0-1 count on Cardinals pinch-hitter Ivan Herrera. Banks struck out Herrera four pitches later on a questionable strike-three call to end the game.

TONIGHT | White Sox at Rays — 5:50 on NBC Sports Chicago | Cubs vs. Padres — 6:40 on Marquee Sports Network

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