“The Last Dance” was a huge hit for ESPN earlier this year, when the documentary caught a captive audience stuck at home. Now, the story of Michael Jordan and the Chicago Bulls will continue. This time in podcast form.
Audible — the audiobook and podcast service, which is owned by Amazon — is teaming up with the NBA to create “Beyond The Last Dance,” a 10-part podcast series that will go over new storylines from the Bulls dynasty.
The series, which debuts August 31, will be hosted by journalist JA Adande, who has covered the NBA and the Bulls for decades, and BJ Armstrong, who won three NBA championships with the team.
The 40-minute episodes will “feature new interviews with former players, coaches and journalists as they provide never-before-told stories about one of the most memorable teams in NBA history,” according to the NBA.
“As we continue to reimagine our content and storytelling about our teams, players and history, ‘Beyond The Last Dance’ serves as a stepping stone as we pursue new opportunities in podcasting,” David Denenberg, the NBA’s senior vice president of global media distribution & business affairs, said in a statement.
Mining more gold from “The Last Dance” is a smart move for the league and Audible since the docuseries was an unexpected savior for ESPN during coronavirus.
As the sports network scrambled to fill its airwaves with live sports being put on hold because of the virus, “The Last Dance” brought in record viewership. The buzz of the series didn’t wear off over its ten episodes, becoming the most-watched documentary ever on ESPN.
The series averaged 5.6 million viewers throughout its run and was the trending topic on Twitter for five straight Sundays, according to ESPN.
Audible is hoping to capture some of that attention. The service announced Monday that it will offer a half-priced ($7.95 a month) subscription tier that gives customers access to a growing library of podcasts and online radio shows hosted by celebrities. The tier does not include most of the service’s audiobooks.