It was a year when off-the-court drama seemed never-ending and when the tug-at-the-heartstring stories had all the more impact. From Ray Rice and Adrian Peterson to Pete Frates and Lauren Hill, sports once again gave us indelible memories spanning the spectrum.
And SportsCenter was there every step of the way as confirmed by the retrospective package, “Top Stories of 2014” (airing on SportsCenter throughout the next week).
“SportsCenter has put together ‘Plays of the Year,’ ‘Sounds of the Year,’ and ‘Images of the Year,’ but with ‘Top Stories of 2014’ we were able to dig deeper into the various layers of the biggest stories,” said senior coordinating producer Michael Shiffman. “Here we’ve captured Adam Silver’s decision on Donald Sterling; the Ray Rice issue; and Mo’ne Davis highlights, and ended with a music montage of great moments, things that didn’t really fit in as stories – like the Odell Beckham catch – but that people were really talking about.”
The 11-minute opus aimed to include the best of the best and the most memorable of the memorable.
“We didn’t want to limit it to a Top 10 if there were more deserving stories, or stretch it if there were less than a designated number,” Shiffman said. “A certain length or number of stories would have prevented us from making it as strong as possible.”
Conceived by senior production manager Thomas Kintner, producer Jen Chafitz had the task of creating the fast-moving look back.
“This piece is really about all the hard work done by those who worked on SportsCenter the past 12 months, whether in Bristol, or reporting on the road,” Chafitz said. “What we did was compile their best moments and show how their collaborative efforts told the best sports stories of the year.”