In addition to what posted at the DailyNews.com/sports website, we have these worth getting out there heading into the weekend:
= As long as you’re up for the Rams-Giants game Sunday morning, here’s the ESPN blurb on what’s coming up for “Outside The Lines” (6 a.m., ESPN with repeats throughout the day):
(The show) will focus on the last three years, the worst in Los Angeles Lakers history, with last season’s 17 wins an all-time low. The once-dominant franchise of late owner Jerry Buss, who won 10 NBA titles, now embarks on the post-Kobe Bryant era with its fourth head coach since Phil Jackson stepped away in 2011. Reporter Steve Delsohn’s examination of the decline of the Lakers and the turmoil at the top includes an in-depth interview with team president Jeanie Buss.
ESPN will have the interview posted on its site Thursday.
== An update on Vin Scully’s 2017 scheduled appearances in the Distinguished Speaker Series: The Redondo Beach Performing Arts Center (appearing March 22) is sold out, the Pasadena Ambassador Auditorium (March 20) has less than 15 seats left, the Thousand Oaks Civic Arts Plaza (March 21) has less than 100 left and Beverly Hills Saban Theatre (March 19) stop has plenty to go.
The way ticket sales works: One must buy the whole series per site — they include, in this round, appearances that include Steve Martin, Diana Nyad and astronaut Scott Kelly. Some who buy the series and can’t attend all six events will post tickets for sale on the site. If you’re only interest is in the Scully appearances, check the site for ticket consignment — either resales, or request to buy just one event. Entire series tickets range from $660 to $340.
Win For Harry just doesn’t have the same … I don’t know … classiness. pic.twitter.com/C7UBDPpZcb
— Tom Hoffarth (@tomhoffarth) October 17, 2016
== And this, on Fox’s Joe Buck, before the Dodgers-Cubs series.
== A Washington, D.C., native, Rudy Gersten, shares a story about the anniversary of the 1988 Kirk Gibson World Series home run — and a connection to the ball itself.
== How NFL teams “skirt” the highlight video policy by using inanimate objects.
== Apparently, be careful of what NFL apps you upload on your phone. Could they be spying on you?
== More hypothesizing on why the NFL TV ratings are dipping, by the Associated Press, New York Newsday, the Minneapolis Star-Tribune, and, to some extent, ESPN.com, which is going with a story that its own eSports coverage is siphoning away viewers.
Commissioner Roger Goodell even addressed it at the owners meeting on Wednesday: “I don’t think there is a single reason for it. We look at all those factors. Everyone has theories. … we also know that two prime-time games that saw our most dramatic decrease went straight up against two very significant debates. Another one of our prime-time games was on Thursday night on NFL Network, as opposed to a network broadcast, which will always get a lower rating. There are a lot of factors to be considered. We don’t make excuses. We try to look at what’s causing it and make changes.
“We don’t think we’ve lost viewers. When you look at ratings, you have to look a little deeper than that. It’s viewers, but also how long they’re engaging for. A lot of times, people will leave a game for whatever reason.”
Anything to do with the National Anthem protests?
“We don’t think that’s a factor and neither do our network partners.”
== Al Michaels and Bob Costas also talk about it on “Any Given Wednesday with Bill Simmons”:
Replays of Wednesday night’s “Any Given Wednesday with Bill Simmons” are on HBO on Thursday (9:45 p.m.), Friday (6:15 a.m. and 8:30 p.m.) and Sunday (6:30 a.m.) as well as on HBO2 on Saturday (7:45 a.m.), Sunday (11:20 p.m.) and Monday (10 p.m.)
TheBigLead.com needed about 1,700 words plus photos, graphics and pull-out charts to declare that the show is at a tipping point.
== Don’t recall Michaels, Mike Tirico, Frank Gifford or Howard Cosell ever being this direct on a “Monday Night Football” telecast when it came to NFL ratings or the quality of the officiating. And Sean McDonough was right: That Week 6 “MNF” telecast featuring an Arizona blowout over the N.Y. Jets had a 6.3 overnight – down 34 percent from a year ago, and the lowest overnight rating for a “MNF” telecast in the sixth week ever.
== Recall that the Sept. 30 college football season opener between USC and Alabama in Arlington, Tex., drew 7.9 million viewers. But a month and a half into the season, it’s only the sixth-most watched college game of the ABC/ESPN season.
== The next episode of HBO’s “Real Sports” goes … like this:
— Andrea Kremer (@Andrea_Kremer) October 19, 2016
The investigation, in the 235th episode that airs Tuesday at 10 p.m., looks at how 72-year-old Bikram Choudhury and his hot yoga craze has affected those who train to teach it. A story that belongs on “Real Sports”? Why not.
Also included in the episode is a profile of Peter Norman, the Australian sprinter who happened to be on the podium at the 1968 Olympics with Tommie Smith and John Carlos and how that protest affected his life (reported on by David Scott) and how Muslin refugees from Somalia landed in Lewiston, Maine and became soccer heroes.
== Highlights from the Pac-12 Network this weekend, in addition to the men’s basketball media day, Friday at 10 a.m. (Mike Yam, Kevin O’Neill, Don MacLean):
= USC women’s soccer vs. Washington State, Thursday at 2 p.m., Neil Sika and Temryss Lane (Pac-12 L.A.)
= UCLA women’s soccer vs. Washington, Thursday at 5 p.m., Christian Miles and Tracey Bailey (Pac-12 L.A.)
= UCLA men’s soccer vs. Cal, Thursday at 8 p.m., Christian Miles and Cobi Jones (Pac-12 L.A.)
= USC women’s volleyball vs. Cal, Friday at 6 p.m., Kevin Barnett and Al Scates (Pac-12 L.A.)
= UCLA women’s volleyball vs. Stanford, Friday at 8 p.m., Anne Marie Anderson and Kelli Tennant (Pac-12 Net and Pac-12 L.A.)
= UCLA men’s water polo at Cal, Saturday at 3:30 p.m., Kevin Danna and Adam Krikorian (Pac-12 L.A.)
= UCLA men’s soccer vs. Stanford, Sunday at 5 p.m., Christian Miles and Cobi Jones (Pac-12 Net and Pac-12 L.A.)
== The Sports Business Daily notes that the Pac-12 Networks picked up about four million homes after the Dish Network moved the channel from a sports tier to a broader tier nationally. The channel remains plagued somewhat by not having DirecTV on board.
== No idea why FS1 would have any interest in hiring Chris Broussard away from ESPN, but it happened.
— Matt Barrero (@MattBarrero) October 15, 2016
== Wayne Gretzky (not to be confused with the person above during the Kings’ home opening ceremony last Friday night) signs his new book, “99: Stories of the Game,” at 7 p.m. Tuesday at the Barnes and Noble at the Grove in L.A. As Gretzky explained during a recent appearance on “Late Night with Stephen Colbert,” the book is out during the 99th season of the NHL’s existence, and these are “more or less” 99 stories about things in the game that are important to him.
== The Kings’ Bob Miller popped in on public radio before last week’s season opener to answer five burning questions.
== Only one more week left in the Skirball Cultural Center display of “Chasing Dreams: Baseball and Becoming American,” which ends Oct. 30. More info: www.skirball.org.
== Leigh Diffey, David Hobbs, Will Buxton and Steve Machett are on the NBC team for the Formula One United States Grand Prix from Austin, Tex. (Sunday, noon, Channel 4, with the pre-race show at 11 a.m. and a replay on NBCSN at 4 p.m.) Practice coverage starts Friday at 8 a.m. and noon on NBCSN, with qualifying Saturday on NBCSN at 9:30 a.m.
== FS1 begins Sunday’s soccer telecasts with the U.S. women’s national team friendly against Switzerland at 10 a.m. FS1’s Rob Stone, Alexi Lalas and Tony DiCicco will do a studio show all day from StubHub Center that includes the Galaxy-Dallas game at 1 p.m.
Down the road, Fox will have the MLS Cup on Dec. 10 at 4:30 p.m., the first time since 2008 that the championship game will be live on an English-language network TV station.
== Meanwhile, NBCSN’s Premier League game of the week takes Chelsea and Manchester United at 8 a.m., with Arlo White, Lee Dixon and Graeme Le Saux on site.
== NBC’s Terry Gannon, Johnny Weir, Tara Lipinski and Andrea Joyce will call the ladies’ free skate (Saturday 1:30 p.m., Channel 4) and men’s free-stake (Sunday, 9:30 a.m., Channel 4) live from the ISU Grand Prix Skate America event in Chicago. The field includes Ashley Wagner, Gracie Gold, Adam Rippon and Jason Brown. This is the first of six events in the 2016 ISU Grand Prix series leading to the Dec. 11 final in France.
== And finally: We’ve yet to reach a world where ESPN Ocho exists. But this will have to do, via the ESPN PR machine: ESPN3 will present the 2016 Sky Zone Ultimate Dodgeball Championship on Wednesday, Oct. 19, at 6 p.m. A selection of the final eight matches will be available as teams competed for a chance to win up to $50,000 in cash, the largest prize in the sport of dodgeball. Sky Zone’s Ultimate Dodgeball Championship is an annual, action-packed tournament series that features teams from around the globe competing in the ultimate test of strength, skill and agility. Winning teams from more than 50 Local Qualifiers advanced out of a pool of 500 teams from over 30 states and three nations.
Yes, we’re telling you about this after the fact. You’ve successfully dodged it. You’re welcome.