Saturday, January 09, 2021

ESPN 1000 'Interviews' SpongeBob SquarePants Ahead of Nickelodeon's Bears-Saints Wild Card Game

The NFL playoffs start this weekend, and Nickelodeon will air the Chicago Bears vs. New Orleans Saints Wild Card game on Sunday at 4:40 p.m. ET/1:30 p.m. PT. Nickelodeon superstar SpongeBob SquarePants will take over the Nickelodeon broadcast — and recently made an appearance on ESPN 1000 in Chicago (albeit, as a series of audio clips mashed together to make it seem like he's talking in an interview) to get fans ready for the game. The radio host asked him if Bears defensive coordinator Chuck Pagano will be fired once the season is over.

"I don't know," SpongeBob said. "Do you think that's too much to expect?" The host went on to ask the beloved Nickelodeon character - voiced by Tom Kenny - if he's predicting a Bears' win over the Saints on Sunday. "Never, ever, never, never, ever, never, never!" SpongeBob replied. He then ended the interview by saying "This is the happiest day of my life!"

On Sunday, SpongeBob will be joined by play-by-play announcer Noah Eagle and analyst Nate Burleson. Nickelodeon star Nevaeh Green (All That, Nickelodeon’s Unfiltered) will join Eagle and Burleson in the booth, and Green's Nick co-star Lex Lumpkin (All That, Nickelodeon’s Unfiltered) ­­­will serve as a reporter during the game. 

"This is a first of its kind presentation for the NFL together with Nickelodeon, and we are very excited to create a unique telecast that will maximize the co-viewing appeal for kids and families, while maintaining the integrity of the game and its traditions," Sean McManus, Chairman, CBS Sports, said in a press release from ViacomCBS. "Partnering with Nickelodeon to showcase the NFL Playoffs is a great opportunity to highlight the power, depth and reach of ViacomCBS, as we continue to unlock the true potential of our merged company with the first of many opportunities between CBS Sports and our ViacomCBS family."

In March of last year, the NFL announced it has added Nickelodeon to broadcast playoff games to target the "younger audience." This was made possible due to the playoffs being expanded from 12 to 14 teams this year, meaning there will be six wild card games played this weekend instead of four. Along with the game airing on Nickelodeon, Bears vs. Saints can be seen on CBS and Amazon Prime Video. As for the game itself, this will be the third time the Bears and Saints have faced each other in the playoffs. The last meeting came in 2007 when the Bears beat the Saints 39-14 in the NFC Championship.

The NFL Wild Card Game on Nickelodeon kicks off on Saturday, January 10 with “The SpongeBob SportsPants Countdown Special” at 4:00 p.m. ET/1:00 p.m. PT, followed by the NFL Wild Card Game LIVE at 4:30 p.m. ET/1:30 p.m. PT! Look out for a very special half-time sneak peek at Kamp Koral: SpongeBob’s Under Years!

More Nick: Nickelodeon Reveals First Look of Characters in Original 'Kamp Koral: SpongeBob’s Under Years' Animated Series!

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