- Last Updated: 4:33 PM, July 24, 2012
- Posted: 1:21 AM, July 22, 2012
How many screwballs does it take to bulb up a light? American sports TV is in the throes of a mindless epidemic: The bigger the event, the less we’re shown.
Networks spend millions, billions for exclusive rights. Next, they beg us to watch.
Finally, they do whatever it takes to minimize the live coverage. It’s nuts.
Heck, FOX now is nationally recognized for its superior achievement in live coverage of fans watching the World Series. Patience, grasshoppers, the games are in there, someplace.
How many viewers, do you suppose, tuned to ESPN’s live coverage of British Open eager to watch players warming up on the range, to hear lengthy on-camera interviews and essays, to watch features and hear/see assorted chats among commentators and analysts and to watch repeated promos to watch the one-of-a-kind British Open live on ESPN?
So, then, why does all of that become loaded into the coverage?
Thursday, it wasn’t enough to simply tell us that Open starter Ivor Robson stands at the first tee, introducing every player, never abandoning his position, not even to hit the head — by this time an old, annual story — ESPN abandoned live coverage to present a feature on the man and his bladder.
Friday, as it began to rain, ESPN’s Scott Van Pelt noted that the rain “does nothing to deter the thousands who line the fairways and fill the grandstands.”
If that’s the case, why should those watching on ESPN be deterred by ESPN from watching? What happened to TV’s goal of providing “the best seat in the house”? When did the removal of that seat become part of the plan?
Even Tiger Woods acolytes would acknowledge Friday’s senselessness of repeatedly leaving the course where a major is being played to show Woods on the practice green before he played, then on the practice range after he played.
It’s not that ESPN destroyed coverage of the first two rounds, it’s more that it gave it a real good shot. And that’s nuts.
Expect replay delays late in NBA games
We All have squirmed our way through the last two minutes of close NBA games, all suffered through their endless endings. Well, they’re about to grow longer.
The NBA has approved two replay rule additions, both to be invoked only in the final two minutes or throughout OT, and both to inspect judgment calls. Oy!
One wonders if the NBA has thought this one through, or, like the NFL’s “instant” replay rule, will it be a 25-years-and-counting work in progress.
The NBA will use replays late in games to examine “restricted zone” block/charge calls and goaltending. Both are often calls that could go either way, thus the likelihood of changing calls in such cases often will become a matter of “perhaps” or a second opinion rather than an unequivocal fact.Follow @NYPostsports