Some press releases to give you tonight. I’ll have to finish the megalinks later, but at least I started them!
Ok, starting with MLB Network, Bob Costas sits down with Selena Roberts on Sunday to talk about her new book about admitted steroids user Alex Rodriguez.
BOB COSTAS TO INTERVIEW SELENA
ROBERTS LIVE MLB NETWORK AT 7:00 PM ET THIS SUNDAY, MAY 3 IN-STUDIO ON
Live Interview with Sports Illustrated Reporter to Discuss New Book About Yankees 3B Alex Rodriguez
Bob Costas will interview Sports Illustrated Senior Writer Selena Roberts live in-studio on MLB Network this Sunday, May 3 at 7:00 p.m. ET. Roberts will discuss her new book, A-Rod: The Many Lives of Alex Rodriguez. The interview will re-air at 12:00 a.m. ET on Monday.
Immediately following the interview, Costas will participate in a panel discussion on the topic with studio host Matt Vasgersian, analyst Harold Reynolds, and Sports Illustrated Senior Writer and MLB Network Insider Tom Verducci.
Roberts was first interviewed by Costas on MLB Network live on Saturday, February 7, hours after her initial SI.com story broke.
TNT says the triple overtime Game 6 of the Celtics-Bulls series was the most watched NBA 1st round series on cable in history.
TNT’s Coverage of Celtics/Bulls Game #6 is Most Watched Round One Game in Cable Television History
TNT delivered a slam dunk on Thursday night with the triple-overtime showdown of the Boston Celtics @ Chicago Bulls Game #6, earning a 3.5 US HH rating and delivering 4,048,000 households and 5,352,000 total viewers making the game the most watched Round One NBA game in cable television history. In addition, the game was also cable’s #1 telecast for the evening in households, total viewers and key adult and male demos. Chicago evened the series at three games a piece with a 128-127 victory in the NBA playoff record fourth overtime game in the series.
TNT concludes their first round NBA Playoffs coverage on Saturday, May 2 as Derrick Rose and the Chicago Bulls face Rajon Rondo and the Boston Celtics in the series deciding Game #7 at 8 p.m. ET. Kevin Harlan (play-by-play), Doug Collins (analyst) and David Aldridge (reporter) will call the game from Boston’s TD Banknorth Garden. TNT will tip-off its coverage at 7:30 p.m. ET with a 30-minute NBA Tip-Off featuring host Ernie Johnson and analysts Charles Barkley and Kenny Smith. The trio will also conclude the night’s coverage with Inside the NBA.
Here is quotage from last night’s coverage on TNT.
Notes from TNT’s Coverage of the NBA Playoffs – Thursday, April 30, 2009
TNT’s “40 Games in 40 Nights” NBA Playoffs coverage continues on Saturday, May 2nd with the Chicago Bulls @ Boston Celtics (Game #7) at 8 p.m. ET.
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TNT NBA Tip-off
Announcers: Ernie Johnson, Charles Barkley and Kenny Smith
Smith on the Bulls not using timeouts in critical situations of Game #5: “More important than the lost possessions was why wasn’t a time-out called (during the Celtics run)? (The Bulls are) a young team that hasn’t been in this position before. They really don’t know how to get themselves out of it. A lot of times the coaching staff will call a timeout to get you out of it.”
Barkley on what Bulls guard Derrick Rose can do to defend Celtics guard Rajon Rondo: “There’s nothing (Derrick Rose) can do. (Rajon Rondo is) playing out of this world. Derrick Rose is a heck of a player but I’m not sure if he’s a great defender. Rajon Rondo, it’s time for him to get his due. For a guy to average a triple-double in five games, that’s pretty impressive.”
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Game #1: Boston Celtics (127) @ Chicago Bulls (128) in triple OT – Series tied 3-3
Announcers: Kevin Harlan, Doug Collins with David Aldridge reporting
Collins on the physical play of this series: “It’s ok to make good hard fouls but you can’t play out of character, Chicago can’t start looking for contact and trying to make plays they don’t usually make. Just play tough basketball”.
Harlan: “Does it surprise you with it (the game) being a little chippy this early in Game 6?”
Collins: After what happened at the end of the game (game 5) with Rondo and Brad Miller that you see quick whistles here early. You’ve got Joey Crawford, Derrick Stafford, and Ed Malloy on this game, believe me they have watched the game, they’ve watched the series, they know what is going on and there going to make sure this doesn’t get out of control. They’re going to let them play but make them play good basketball.”
Collins on how Celtics guard Ray Allen is benefiting offensively from the team’s work on defense: “Blocked shots, rebounds and steals…that’s when Boston has really been at its best (defensively) in this series and the guy who’s the recipient is Ray Allen. He’s the guy that gets out and its tough to cover him in the transition game and that’s when he gets those open shots.”
Collins on Celtics reserve forward Brian Scalabrine: “(Brian Scalabrine) can space the floor and he’s a very smart player but he’s not a power player.”
Collins on Celtics guard Rajon Rondo following his altercation with Bulls guard Kirk Hinrich: “With what happened at the end of Game #5 (hard foul on Bulls center Brad Miller), Rondo has got to be smarter than this. You can’t get caught up in this. He’s a feisty point guard; he’s arguably been the best player in the playoffs. (Kevin) Garnett and (Leon) Powe are out with injuries…Rondo has to be smarter than that. He cannot let his emotions get the best of him in that situation.”
TNT’s David Aldridge interviewed Celtics head coach Doc Rivers following the first quarter
Rivers on what he saw during the altercation between Bulls guard Kirk Hinrich and Celtics guard Rajon Rondo: “I don’t care what I saw. What else are they going to do? We’re up 3-2 (in the series going into Game #6); they are going to attack us and we have to have composure. This wasn’t on the Bulls, this was us. They’ve got 37 points, we’ve got 26 (after the first quarter) and we haven’t shown any composure so far.”
Collins on the influence Bulls reserve guard Lindsey Hunter has had with rookie guard Derrick Rose: “Lindsey Hunter has been quite a mentor and a great guy in the locker room this year for Derrick Rose. Lindsey has been around a lot and he’s been around some great players. He broke in with the Pistons with Isiah Thomas and Joe Dumars, two Hall of Fame backcourt players. (He) played on some championship teams with the Lakers and Kobe Bryant. He understands this game and what players have to bring every night. He’s been a real positive influence for Derrick Rose.”
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Announcers: Johnson, Barkley and Smith
Barkley on Celtics guard Ray Allen making Bulls guard Ben Gordon work: “(Ray Allen is) being really aggressive and what they are really doing is working Ben Gordon. Ben Gordon has a bad hamstring and it looks like Ray is going crazy but they are making Ben Gordon work hard. That’s why Boston has to be feeling good.”
Barkley on if Rajon Rondo should have received a Flagrant One foul during the altercation with Kirk Hinrich: “That was a call from the other night (Game #5). The refs have to calm down and breath a little bit. Every hard foul is not a flagrant.”
Barkley on Rockets forward Ron Artest: “(Ron Artest) would give Dr. Phil a nightmare.”
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Collins on the improvement of the Bulls and Celtics young big players: “Big men take a longer time (to develop). So many big guys coming in (to the league) aren’t in as good of shape and don’t play on the level that you have to play night to night. In Boston, what they have done with Glenn “Big Baby” Davis and Kendrick Perkins and how they have become a big part of their team. And how about Joakim Noah and Tyrus Thomas (on the Bulls) and how these young kids have improved as the season has gone along. These big guys are so vital to the success of their teams.”
Collins on Bulls forward Joakim Noah: “(Joakim Noah’s) offense right now is ‘found money’. Where he really helps is on that defensive backcourt, offensive rebounding, blocking shots and defending the paint. That’s where his value to (the Bulls) is right now.”
Collins on what he thought was the most taxing as a coach in the playoffs: “You felt like you never had enough time. You’re always pressed for time. You wanted to watch more tape and have your team more prepared.”
Collins on if players get more exhausted mentally or physically after playing so many overtime games in the playoffs: “Mentally. Six overtimes out of four games…that’s the mental wear-and-tear.”
Collins on the Bulls/Celtics series going into multiple overtimes: “This game is on the heels of a series that has been amazing. What these guys have thrown out on the floor throughout the entire series. It looks like they are dead in the water and you find a way to get a couple of baskets. Then it looks like you’ve taken control and the other team comes back.”
TNT’s David Aldridge interviewed Chicago Bulls guard Derrick Rose following Game #6
Rose on the Bulls winning Game #6: “We just don’t want to lose, that was the biggest thing. We want to come out here and play in front of our fans. Now we just have to take it to Boston.”
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Game #2: Portland Trail Blazers (76) @ Houston Rockets (92) – Rockets win the series 4-2.
Announcers: Matt Devlin, P.J. Carlesimo with Craig Sager reporting
Carlesimo on Rockets forward Shane Battier: “(Shane Battier) does an awful lot of different things and some of them don’t appear on the stat sheet. Whether it’s drawing a charge, tapping the ball back on a rebound and he’s a winner. He’s the perfect guy that you want as a captain. A pair of perimeter defenders with (guard) Ron Artest, I don’t know if there’s another team that has two perimeter defenders that are that good.”
Carlesimo on the Dallas Mavericks facing the Denver Nuggets in the second round: “Dallas in April is playing the best basketball they’ve played all year. (Mavericks head coach) Rick Carlisle has done a great job of bringing that team along. Obviously, (Nuggets head coach) George Karl’s group is playing very well as the number two seed in the West (Conference). That could be a very entertaining series.”
Carlesimo on Rockets head coach Rick Adelman: “16 times he has in his 18 years as an NBA head coach that he has had his team in the playoffs. He has done a great job, he’s number 6 active NBA coaches in wins, and he’s number 12 all-time NBA coaches (in wins). He has taken the Blazers twice to the NBA Finals in “90 and 92” I think with all that, he’s still underated, people still don’t appreciate how great of a coach Rick Adelman is.”
Carlesimo on the strength of Rockets forward Ron Artest: “The only guy that I remember with hands as strong as Ron Artest’s was (Hall of Famer) Karl Malone. When he played, he would strip guys all the time.”
TNT’s Craig Sager interviewed Rockets forward Ron Artest following the game
Artest getting his offensive game going in Game #6 by scoring 27 points: “I’ve been playing against the best guys since I got into the league. Over the past couple of years, I’ve had John Salmons and Shane Battier to guard the best player and I was able to score. In this series, the best matchup was me against (Brandon) Roy so I had to guard him and I couldn’t really get off on offense. But in the last game, I wanted to stop complaining about playing defense and telling my team I couldn’t play offense and play offense. They needed me to attack. I’m really proud of Roy and all the young fellas’ that come into the league.”
Artest on Trail Blazers guard Brandon Roy being the toughest player he’s ever had to guard: “Brandon Roy was the toughest guy that I ever guarded. He’s the only guy to ever score 40 against me, that hasn’t happened in ten years, you have to respect that.”
Artest on Charles Barkley giving him a hard time about his haircut: “Yesterday, I decided to get a haircut and when I got home I saw the guys laughing in the studio, but I didn’t know what they were laughing about because I was tired. They told me at practice that Charles was messing with my hair, but he’s not the reason why I got a haircut.
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Inside the NBA
Announcers: Johnson, Barkley and Smith
Smith on why he thinks the Bulls/Celtics series is not the greatest series ever: “All of my friends are hitting me up with emails, Facebook, Twitter, whatever it is they are hitting me and they are saying, ‘Is this the best series you have ever seen in your life?’ Well, it’s the first round and it’s great, but I’m just missing those one or two super guys that are just phenomenal superstars that I’ve expected. Now I’m getting that out of Ray Allen and I’m getting that out of (Derrick) Rose, but I need Kevin Garnett in that lineup. It is a great series. Probably the second best first round series I’ve ever seen. To me the Dallas series against Golden State was still better just on the fact of competition and the excitement. (But tonight) is the best game I’ve seen in the last five years.”
Barkley on why he thinks the Bulls/Celtics series is not the greatest series ever: “It’s been a really good series to watch. You have seen some great individual performances. The first round of the playoffs can’t be the best series ever.”
Smith on why Bulls forward John Salmons should have had an outstanding performance earlier in the series: “(Game #6) is the type of game that I though John Salmons could’ve had earlier. I’m a little surprised it took him this long to have an explosive game because I always felt that he had a little bit of an advantage against the Boston Celtics on the offensive end. Tonight was the night he actually proved it.”
Barkley on the excitement of playing in a Game #7 and fatigue being a non-factor: “I’ve been in a triple Overtime game in the Finals, it is so exciting. You’re not thinking about being tired or anything because it is so exciting. Anybody who is complaining about minutes, I’ve been in a triple Overtime in the Finals. We have the best bodies in the world, other than boxers. Nobody’s tired, you’ll be tired tonight, but once you get to that building Saturday the crowd will be going nuts and there is no other place you want to be because everybody’s going to be watching. Saturday night there is no other place you’d rather be. It’s the longest 48 hours, it feels like a week.”
Barkley on the talent of Lakers guard Kobe Bryant: “The only guy who can stop Kobe Bryant is the guy who we get down on our knees and pray to every night.”
Smith on the L.A. Lakers having no weaknesses: “The Lakers have no weaknesses, that’s the key. They have the inside with (Andrew) Bynum and (Lamar) Odom, they have perimeter play with (Derek) Fisher, (Sasha) Vujacic, (Trevor) Ariza and all those guys. Then they have the great superstar in Kobe, they have a great coach and it comes easy to them. It’s like a wall that has a bunch of water coming out of different holes. You put one hand on one hole and it comes from over there (a different hole), so you put your hand on that one and it comes from another hole. They have so many things that they throw at you, including one of the greatest coaches of all time. So you put that together and they only can beat themselves. The Rockets just can’t score enough. This is where Tracy McGrady might have helped them, a guy who can give you 30 points a night, he might have helped them in this series.”
TNT’s Laura Green interviewed Magic forward Rashard Lewis.
Lewis on beating the 76ers to win the series without center Dwight Howard, who was suspended for Game #6: “It gives us a lot of confidence, we have a lot of heart. We obviously came out here without Dwight (Howard), but everyone on the team stepped their game up, everybody played hard and that’s what you need in the playoffs. You don’t just need one or two guys, you need the whole team and guys coming off the bench.”
Smith on Bulls center Joakim Noah’s steal and dunk over Celtics forward Paul Pierce: “(Noah) took off, I didn’t think he had that in him and neither did Paul Pierce because he jumped. How many 7-foot centers you know that can actually do that? Stand up, get the correct hand in the defensive passing lane and get the dunk?”
Barkley: “Not many.”
EJ’S Neat-O-Stat-of the Night: Bulls/Celtics Series Stats
- First NBA Playoff series with 4 Overtime games (7 Overtime periods total).
- 106 lead changes
- 65 ties
- 5 games decided by 3 points or less (ties NBA record)
- Ray Allen had nine 3-pointers (ties NBA record) and 18 attempts (sets NBA record)
- Rajon Rondo had 19 assists (ties Celtics playoff record – Bob Cousy, 1959)
- Series tied 3-3.
Comcast SportsNet New England also set a ratings record for Celtics-Bulls.
COMCAST SPORTSNET’S GAME 6 TRIPLE OVERTIME THRILLER NETS 28-YEAR REGIONAL SPORTS NETWORK HIGHEST RATINGS IN HISTORY
Celtics-Bulls First Round Series Up Nearly 10 percent over Celtics-Hawks of 2008
CSN Has Deciding Game 7 Saturday Night Starting at 7 p.m.
BURLINGTON, MA - The Boston Celtics are generating more interest than any time during Comcast SportsNet’s 28-year history. CSN achieved its highest rating in network history during the Celtics-Bulls Game 6 triple overtime thriller with an 8.2 rating. Game 6 reached an estimated 360,800 homes in New England.
Despite sharing each telecast in New England with a national network and the absence of Kevin Garnett, CSN is outperforming last year’s historic playoff run through five telecasts by nearly 10 percent. CSN has averaged a 6.8 hh rating (299,200), which is up 9.6 percent over CSN’s 6.2 playoff average through five Celtics-Hawks telecasts.
During the Celtics-Bulls series, CSN has outperformed the national network by 78 percent 6.8 to 3.8. In game 6, CSN averaged an 8.2 hh (360,800) rating and TNT a 5.2. In Game 5, CSN bested TNT in ratings nearly 2 to 1 with a 6.3 hh rating (277,200) and TNT a 3.3.
CSN will telecast the deciding Game 7.
7 p.m. – Celtics Pre-Game Live with Gary Tanguay and Donny Marshall
8 p.m. – Celtics vs. Bulls with Mike Gorman and Tommy Heinsohn
10:30 p.m. – Celtics Post-Game Live
That’s it for the press releases.