As if your local newspaper needed any more bad news, ESPN is now in the neighborhood covering sports. We're talking high-school sports here, not to mention college, as well as the local pro teams you'll also see on "SportsCenter." In the year since ESPN started setting its sights on local, it's built significant online presences in five of the nation's biggest markets: New York, Chicago, Boston, Dallas and Los Angeles. It didn't hurt that two of these cities -- Boston and L.A. -- battled it out in the NBA finals this year.
Each site gets its own, web-only "SportsCenter" segment, which recaps local sports news, and looks and feels, well, just like "SportsCenter" on TV. For pro franchises, ESPN drills down for the locally obsessed. New York's site, for example, has four different updates on the state of Derek Jeter's contract talks. Los Angeles' local site, meanwhile, has a poll question on the Lakers' "greatest-ever duo" (Kobe and Shaquille vs. Magic and Kareem). It's another extension that shows there's still headroom for the already formidable ESPN brand.