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With No Live Sports, ESPN Turns to Disney Sports Movies


The 2019-2020 NBA season was suspended on March 11, after Utah Jazz start Rody Gobert tested positive for coronavirus. Every major sport followed in the next few days. Today, pretty much all pro sports are suspended and in quarantine just like the rest of us. Other than professional wrestling — which is obviously staged — there’s basically no major athletic competition anywhere in America. And since major athletic competitions are kind of what ESPN airs 24/7, they’re being hit particularly hard by their absence.

ESPN has already made a deal with WWE to air old WrestleManias in primetime, and now they’ve announced they’re also shoring up their schedule with a selection of sports films from the channel’s owners, The Walt Disney Company. The first two movies — the baseball flick The Rookie and the basketball drama Glory Road — premiere on ESPN tomorrow, March 27 and next Friday, April 3 respectively.

Additional titles announced so far include Kurt Russell’s Miracle about the famous U.S. hockey team, Invincible, starring Mark Wahlberg as Philadelphia Eagles player Vince Papale, The Greatest Game Ever Played, a golf biopic starring Shia LaBeouf, and Secretariat, about the famous horse turned secretary (I’ve never seen the film, this is just my best guess based on the title).

This is a true lemonade-out-of-lemons situation, so no one’s faulting their picks. But I’d love to see them dip deeper into the Disney back catalog. How about a The Computer Wore Tennis Shoes marathon? It does have the word “tennis” in the title.

Gallery — The Worst Disney Sidekicks Ever:

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