Each year, the Cynopsis Sports Media Awards celebrates the sports industry's biggest players and best work, with finalists and winners recognized across the sports world for its innovation and contributions.
Finalists for Cynopsis' 9th annual Sports Media Awards have been announced, including ESPN's #oneteam Campaign for Awareness Campaign for a Social Good Initiative. Winners will be announced on Wednesday, April 21 at 3 p.m. ET during a virtual show.
The world came to a halt due to the COVID-19 pandemic, and the world of sports was no exception. For a business that lives and breathes live action, we had to find a new normal, but our commitment to serve sports fans never wavered. At ESPN, we know that sports has a powerful ability to spark national conversations, and it was time to use our platforms to inform viewers about the virus, while also coming together - as one team - to help each other in a time of unprecedented need.
The best of sports - resilience, teamwork and unity - was needed more than ever, and ESPN worked with our colleagues, communities, sports leagues, advertisers and others to launch the #oneteam campaign to spread messages of safety, hope and inspiration through our platforms.
ESPN deployed its first #oneteam PSA in late March, and an array of talent including Stephen A. Smith, Doris Burke, Mike Greenberg and Maria Taylor all shared messages of doing our part, checking in on each other, helping the most vulnerable and supporting our frontline heroes that are keeping us safe. A second #oneteam PSA was launched in mid-April, with talent like Kevin Negandhi, Sarah Spain, Michael Wilbon and Linda Cohn reminding fans that sports will return, but it was time for everyone to do their part by keeping their distance and protecting the most vulnerable together - while apart.
In addition to the PSAs, ESPN launched a #oneteam Challenge with DoSomething.org that virtually engaged with young people, who were seeking opportunities to safely help their communities. The six-week challenge was filled with sports themes, encouraging youth to create masks, promote handwashing, make signs of encouragement for essential works and become more civically engaged within their communities. ESPN's talent, including Tony Reali, Jay Harris and Jen Lada, as well as professional athletes, also took part in the challenges.
ESPN also created the #oneteam Speaker Series with NBA Insider Adrian Wojnarowski, who interviewed sports stars and asked questions from Boys and Girls Clubs of America members from across the country, with topics including their career paths, staying in shape, self-improvement and the coronavirus pandemic. Guests included Erik Spoelstra, Maria Taylor, Trae Young, Chiney Ogwumike and Donovan Mitchell.