ESPN.com Review

We've told you a bit about what ESPN.com is, so the question becomes: should it become your number one source for sports information?  To help you decide, here's a quick list of the things that we found handy or frustrating about the website.

Pros

  • Meet all your sports number-crunching needs — Scores, statistics, standings… ESPN.com has the facts and figures that help you track the performance of your favourite teams and athletes.

  • Get the stories behind the box scores — The numbers only tell part of the story, so ESPN's sports journalists and insiders bring you expert analysis and opinions on the performance of teams and athletes both on and off the playing field.  Find them all at ESPN.com.

  • Enjoy the sights and sounds — Worried that you'll miss your favourite team or athlete's big upcoming match, or at least your favourite ESPN program?   You can log onto ESPN.com and catch repeats and highlights.  You might also be able to watch or listen to ESPN programming live!

  • Put your sports IQ to the test — Do you think you know your sports well enough to predict what teams or athletes will win various matchups, or which players will do the most to carry their teams to victory throughout their league seasons?  Participate in ESPN.com's fantasy sports games for the chance to win great prizes!  And most of them are free to enter!

Cons

  • Live video is VIP only — In order to watch live ESPN programs online, you have to be subscribed to a telecom provider that has ESPN in its default channel package, and use your credentials for that account to verify your access to WatchESPN.

  • Blackouts are still in effect — Even if you have access to WatchESPN, certain sporting events may be unavailable to you, due to regional blackouts.

  • Know what you're wagering — For certain fantasy sports leagues on ESPN.com, it costs money to create or join groups.  Be sure to read the rules and regulations for each type of fantasy sports to know which ones you have to pay for or not.

The bottom line: 8/10

ESPN.com is one of the most respected mainstream sports information websites out there.  Not only does it have scores, statistics, and standings for various teams and individual athletes, but it also has opinions and analysis from experts on the storylines that go beyond the action on the playing field.  Watch highlights, recap clips, and other exclusive video footage from ESPN, or listen to or download ESPN's radio shows.  You can even participate in fantasy sports leagues for a chance to win cool prizes!

However, we need to break out the yellow cards and give you a few warnings about ESPN.com.  First, not all videos will be available to you unless you are subscribed to a telecom provider that has the ESPN family of channels (or at least ESPN's main channel) in its channel package.  And even then, certain programs may not be available to you, based on your location, because of blackout restrictions.  And certain fantasy sports games may require you to pay money in order to participate in them, so take care to read their rules to make sure that you're not betting more than you're willing to lose.

Overall, ESPN.com is a good source for sports information if you follow multiple mainstream sports at once (such as football, basketball, soccer, hockey, or baseball).  If you're looking for more detailed information, however, you may want to try a particular league or team website.

 

Okay!  With that out of the way, let's start by giving you a quick tour of ESPN.com in our next tutorial!


What is ESPN.com?

ESPN.com (www.espn.go.com) is the website companion to the ESPN family of sports radio and television channels.  It contains sports statistics and stories, video and radio feeds of live sporting events or highlight and analysis shows, and fantasy sports leagues where you can assemble virtual teams and compete to win prizes.

How does ESPN.com work?  Top 5 ESPN.com features

1. Crunch the numbers with scores, stats, and standings

Whether you're just looking for the outcome of last night's match or are tracking the performance of your favourite teams and athletes, ESPN.com has you covered.  From box scores to division standings, league leaders to individual player numbers, you can find the essential numbers behind the games on ESPN.com.

ESPN.com statistics and standings

2. Expert analysis from journalists and other insiders

Since numbers don't always tell the whole story, ESPN.com also has the news that happens when athletes aren't on the playing field.  Who's heating up, and who's cooling down?  Who's in the market for some new talent?  How long will that injury keep your favourite athlete sidelined?  Which athletes or teams are getting a change in management?  ESPN.com has the answers for you, brought to you by people who have their fingers on the collective pulse of the sports world.

ESPN.com insider stories

3. Get game stories in brief with recaps, highlights, and athlete reactions

Get the choicest clips and sound bites from the sports and athletes that you follow.  Watch recaps and highlights from games and events that you missed, or just watch them again if you couldn't believe what you saw the first time!  Plus, get interviews of athletes and coaches inside the locker room for their commentary on how their latest match went, or how they see the exploits of their team as a whole.

ESPN.com match recaps

4. Watch with WatchESPN or listen with ESPN Audio and never miss the action

Can't get to a TV or radio to watch or listen to your favourite athlete or team's next match?  Don't sweat it!  Stay tuned into the sports that you follow on the go with WatchESPN or ESPN Audio.  Log in using credentials from your telecom provider, pick what program you want to watch or listen to, and enjoy!

Watch ESPN.com video

5. Compete in fantasy leagues against your fellow sports fans

Can't get enough competition?  Why not get in on the action yourself?  Assemble a virtual dream team of your favourite players, and rack up points as those athletes play and pad their stats in the real world.  If you choose your squads wisely, you could win some cool prizes, such as a brand-new car or truck!

ESPN.com fantasy sports games

 

Do we have your adrenaline pumping, sports fan?  Then head on over to our review of ESPN.com to see which features of the website are worthy of doing a touchdown celebration dance over, and which ones draw out a penalty flag.