Here we go. Let’s do some links tonight.
Laura Nachman reports that Comcast SportsNet Philadelphia will have live coverage of the Congressional Steroids Hearings.
Tom Hoffarth of the Los Angeles Daily News writes in his Farther Off the Wall blog that people actually watched the Pro Bowl on Sunday. And Hoffarth has info on this year’s Sports Illustrated Swimsuit issue with Marisa Miller on the cover.
Newsday’s Neil Best says the HBO documentary on Joe Louis is excellent.
Justin Terranova writes in the NYP TV Sports blog that pariah John Rocker will be a guest on CBS’ Early Show on Wednesday.
Jon Lafayette of TV Week says GSN airs the 6th season of the World Poker Tour starting March 24.
Michael David Smith of the AOL Fanhouse blog writes that ESPN is actually ok with the Chris Berman videos on YouTube.
That’s it for now. Back tomorrow.
A few things for you tonight.
Sad news to report. Legendary Canadian announcer Don Chevrier who did work on ABC’s and NBC’s Olympics coverage as well as being the first Toronto Blue Jays TV announcer has passed away at the age of 69. William Houston of the Toronto Globe and Mail remembers his work. Peter James of the CanWest News Service also has a story on Chevrier’s passing. CBC Sports also remembers Chevrier. Alex J. Walling of TSN.ca has a nice column on Chevrier. I’m surprised there’s no mention of Chevrier on NBC Sports.com.
The Sports Media Watch quotes from a Sports Business Daily story which states that ratings for the NHL on Versus and various Regional Sports Networks are up as compared to last season.
From Bob Brookover of the Philadelphia Inquirer, we find that Eagles quarterback Donovan McNabb is denying a story from Fox Sports sideline reporter Pam Oliver that he felt his days with the Eagles are numbered. Pam stands by her story.
Tom Hoffarth of the Los Angeles Daily News blogs in Farther Off the Wall about Pete Rose’s appearance on Sports Unfiltered with Dennis Miller on Wednesday. And Hoffarth writes that KSPN host Steve Mason will do a live show Wednesday from a Veterans Affairs Hospital to bring some holiday cheer to vets who are being treated during the Christmas season.
Anthony Crupi of Mediaweek says USA Network won the cable primetime ratings for last week riding WWE Raw over ESPN’s Monday Night Football and its matchup involving the lowly Atlanta Falcons.
Steve Kash of the Terre Haute (IN) Tribune Star says the Big Ten Network dispute has left many fans in the lurch.
The Portland (OR) Business Journal reports on FSN Northwest picking up 20 Portland Beavers minor league baseball games and five Portland Timbers soccer matches.
Phil Swann of TV Predictions.com reports that DirecTV will pick up Tennis Channel in HD when it launches on New Year’s Eve.
I don’t know if this will apply here, but with the Australian Open starting up next month, The Australian reports that the tournament will launch a broadband channel on its website. It would be nice since ESPN2 hardly covers the Open even though it owns the rights. It has outsourced some coverage to Tennis Channel.
And I know you’re starving for news about Philadelphia news anchor Alycia Lane. Michael Klein of the Philadelphia Inquirer who seems to be leading the reporting on Lane says she’s been taken off the air indefinitely following her weekend arrest and calling a police officer “a dyke”. Karen Heller of the Inquirer says while Lane is gorgeous, she doesn’t seem to have much common sense. Finally, Laura Nachman has the Alycia “Time-Lane”.
That will do it for tonight. See you tomorrow.
I’ll give you a few links here. Just finished watching the latest edition of Ninja Warrior on G4 in which two Americans who qualified for the Sasuke tournament this past summer got to compete. Unfortunately, they could not advance past the first stage, falling into the muddy water at the Jumping Spider. They tried hard and they can take solace that 98 of the 100 participants failed to advance to the 2nd stage and the two that did advance to the next stage could not get past the Salmon Ladder. If you don’t know what I’m talking about, you can get a full explanation of this at the Wiki site. It’s pretty accurate.
To some links now.
Neil Best of Newsday tells us that Madison Square Garden prevented Knicks play-by-play man Gus Johnson from appearing on Steven A. Smith’s ESPN Radio program to comment on the Stephon Marbury situation. Neil also reviews Sports Unfiltered with Dennis Miller.
From TV Week, Chris Pursell reports that the NHL Network adds some programming through 20 American Hockey League games. And in his Pressbox blog, Chris writes that the NFL Network has two big games this season.
In news that could have a big effect on the cable industry, Linda Moss of Multichannel News reports that an arbitrator has ruled that an Ohio cable provider should be paying FSN Ohio less money for carriage because the channel lost the rights to the Cleveland Indians. Also from Multichannel, Linda Haugsted tells us that the NFL Network has begun using former 49er QB Joe Montana in a campaign to promote its eight game schedule.
Glen Dickson of Broadcasting & Cable magazine cites a Motorola study which states football fans prefer to watch games on HDTV rather than going to the games.
The Orbitcast satellite radio blog says XM Satellite Radio will be the sponsor for NHL All Star fan balloting.
Two things from the corporate offices of ESPN. First, we get a press release on the plans to cover the MLS Cup which airs Sunday on ABC. And here are plans for the “multi-platform” coverage for Ohio State-Michigan including classic games on ESPN Classic.
Bruce Allen of Boston Sports Media Watch looks at one of the first sports talk shows in the country that helped to shape how sports radio is done today, the Sports Huddle with Eddie Andelman, Mark Witkin and Jim Witkin which started in Boston back in the early 1970′s and airs today in a different incarnation.
The NFL says the Cowboys-Giants game on Fox this past Sunday was the most watched program of the week.
COWBOYS-GIANTS ON FOX MOST-WATCHED SHOW OF WEEK NFL Games Account for 5 of 6 Most-Watched Shows of TV Season NFL Games Top Ratings in 25 NFL Markets Sunday’s FOX doubleheader game featuring the Dallas Cowboys at New York Giants was viewed by 25.1 million fans, ranking as the most-watched program of the week on television and posting a 15 percent larger audience than the week’s No. 2 show (CSI, 21.9 million viewers). Since the NFL season kicked off on Sept. 6, NFL games account for five of the six most-watched programs on television: Most-Watched Shows on TV, Sept. 6-Nov. 11, 2007 Date Program (Game) Viewers Nov. 4 CBS Sunday National (mostly Patriots-Colts) 33.8 million Oct. 14 CBS Sunday National (mostly Patriots-Cowboys) 29.1 million Sept. 27 CSI (season premiere) 25.4 million Nov. 11 FOX Sunday National (mostly Cowboys-NY Giants) 25.1 million Oct. 21 FOX Sunday National (mostly Vikings-Cowboys) 23.6 million Sept. 9 FOX Sunday National (mostly Bears-Chargers) 22.1 million NFL games topped the local ratings in 25 of 30 NFL markets last week (Nov. 5-11).
CNBC’s Darren Rovell says the turnaround of Alex Rodriguez to negotiate a new contract with the New York Yankees is a slap in the face to baseball uberskunk Scott Boras.
COWBOYS-GIANTS ON FOX MOST-WATCHED SHOW OF WEEK
NFL Games Account for 5 of 6 Most-Watched Shows of TV Season
NFL Games Top Ratings in 25 NFL Markets
Sunday’s FOX doubleheader game featuring the Dallas Cowboys at New York Giants was viewed by 25.1 million fans, ranking as the most-watched program of the week on television and posting a 15 percent larger audience than the week’s No. 2 show (CSI, 21.9 million viewers).
Since the NFL season kicked off on Sept. 6, NFL games account for five of the six most-watched programs on television:
Most-Watched Shows on TV, Sept. 6-Nov. 11, 2007
CBS Sunday National (mostly Patriots-Colts)
CBS Sunday National (mostly Patriots-Cowboys)
CSI (season premiere)
FOX Sunday National (mostly Cowboys-NY Giants)
FOX Sunday National (mostly Vikings-Cowboys)
FOX Sunday National (mostly Bears-Chargers)
NFL games topped the local ratings in 25 of 30 NFL markets last week (Nov. 5-11).
John Ryan of the San Jose Mercury News wonders why the Sharks don’t like playing on TV.
Staying in the Bay Area, Dave Del Grande of the Oakland Tribune has some suggestions on how to improve the ratings for the final NASCAR Nextel Cup race this Sunday. Del Grande is wrong that the race will air on NBC, it airs on ABC. NBC no longer has the NASCAR rights.
Awful Announcing quotes an interview Sports Business Daily conducted with CBS News and Sports President Sean McManus in which he talks extensively about the NFL, the NFL Network and flex scheduling. Good stuff.
That’s going to do it for tonight. I’m going to bed. Back with more tomorrow.
I’ve been having too much fun with Hulu. I’ve been watching Arrested Development, Season 1 all over again. That’s another candidate for Videos of the Week. Anyway, let me give you some links tonight before I decide to watch some late night TV.
The Los Angeles Daily News’ Tom Hoffarth reports in his Farther Off the Wall blog that there’s some housecleaning at ESPN Radio 710.
The Orbitcast blog on satellite radio says XM Satellite Radio will continue to cover baseball’s Hot Stove on its MLB Home Plate channel.
SI’s Richard Deitsch talks with Dennis Miller about his Sports Unfiltered show.
Kate McGinty of the Appleton (WI) Post-Crescent says the Big Ten Network disputes with Time Warner and Charter Communications will keep over half of the University of Wisconsin’s men’s basketball games off local TV’s. The Des Moines Register reports that the athletic director for the University of Iowa is pessimistic that the Big Ten Network will have an agreement with Mediacom in the near future. Jeffrey Flanagan of the Kansas City Star says former Missouri-Kansas City head coach Rich Zvosek is now working for BTN.
Joe Nocera of the New York Times’ Business section suggests the NFL Network drop its price in order for it to be picked up by the major cable providers. Mark McGuire of the Albany (NY) Times-Union laments that the NFL Network isn’t available so fans could watch what could be a history-making game, the Pats-Giants in Week 17.
Ferd Lewis of the Honolulu Advertiser says ESPN’s College Gameday crew (except Lee Corso) wouldn’t mind making a trip to Hawaii.
A Connecticut TV station has reached an agreement with ESPN to rebroadcast UConn-Cincinnati on Sunday as it will be on ESPNU, a channel most of the Constitution State does not receive.
Austin Meek of the Topeka (KS) Capital-Journal writes about former Kansas State play-by-play man Greg Sharpe who will be the voice of the Nebraska Cornhuskers for the rest of the season, filling in for Jim Rose who resigned for health reasons.
Jesse Kohl and Kara Nicholson write in the Media in Canada website about the final playoff run for the CFL on CBC.
Those are your links for tonight. I can already see some stories posted for Saturday so I’ll stop now and give you those stories tomorrow morning.
The show is barebones. No real opening. Versus just threw it to Dennis standing on a stage. He did a 10 minute monologue. In my opinion, most of it bombed. There were the usual obscure references like one to the Grand Wizard mentioned in a story about the Fabulous Moolah’s death.
But as weak as his headlines were, Miller’s strength is his rant and he went on one against sports owners who rape fans for food, throwback jerseys and ticket prices. His rant which included a bleeped out “fuck” went four minutes.
We only saw Dennis standing on a stage and we heard bits of laughter so we had to assume he’s in front of a live studio audience. Miller’s best line was about the New York Jets saying, “If you want to pay tribute to the Jets, how about the team winning a game once every five weeks?”
He then introduced his first guest, Curt Schilling who was live via satellite from his 38 Studios offices in Maynard, MA. We didn’t discover that Miller is in a studio in Santa Barbara, CA some 16 minutes into the show. The interview was typical Miller, taking the opportunity to give and take with Schilling. This went two quick segments. They talked about his signing of a new contract today and remaining with the Red Sox. And they promoted Curt’s 38 Studios company. It was ok. Curt rolled with the punches. The segment was practically over as soon as it started.
Following a commerical break, Dennis answered some viewer questions including one from hack Jay Leno. This segment also included Dennis’ second bleeped “fuck”. Not a very strong segment as Dennis answered questions on steroids use, the BCS, boxing vs. MMA and a mock question from Leno.
Al Michaels from NBC and Miller’s former partner on Monday Night Football came on and there was more give and take. While Miller did bomb on MNF during his two seasons, you can tell Al genuinely likes Miller and it’s the reason why he agreed to be on the first show. Al is a very good storyteller and a good guest. He was also appearing via the satellite from his home in LA. Michaels said he was playing hurt with a cold and he was wearing a Google baseball cap, sunglasses, a scarf and a jacket. He looked he was in the witness protection program. This led Miller to his best line of the night, “Little do people know Al has been legally blind for all these years.” The two talked NFL and this was definitely the best segment of the night. Even with a cold, Al can banter with the best of them.
Miller’s next guest was sports handicapper Brandon Lang appearing from Las Vegas. He picked winners against the spread on certain NFL games this weekend.
The final segment was called “Photo Finish” where Miller did headlines just like he did back on Saturday Night Live, his old HBO show and syndicated talk show. This was much funnier than the monologue, but there were some bombs as well.
Overall, the show was uneven and choppy. I’m sure it will get better. Versus had better hope so. My grade, C-.