Wednesday, July 15, 2009

Why Versus Coverage Beats NBC's in my Book

As you can tell by the post before this one, I'm completely tired of having the same so called elite franchises (no offense to those fan bases, but you probably already think that anyway so whatever) that are deemed special enough by network executives to grace NBC are always on the "NHL on NBC."

Then Lepore came back with the Versus TV schedule and I thought hey, this looks better. 16 teams were left off the NBC schedule, while only 4 were left off the Versus. The teams that were left off Versus'? 4 Canadian teams that I'm sure are all over the CBC and TSN schedules.

Well, I thought I'd throw some quick graphs together that prove the point. First off, the NBC schedule.

Click on it to blow it up. But look at that, 6 teams have over different 5 chances (in just 10 weeks!) to be on the national NBC broadcast. Way to switch it up. Oh and WTF! Colorado...COLORADO?!? Are you shitting me? Last place 32-45-5 Colorado gets five chances on national tv? Good choice.

How 'bout Versus? How did they divvy out their broadcast schedule across the 30 (hear that NBC? There's 30 teams in the NHL) franchises? Let's take a look.

Oh look at that relatively even distribution, at least every American franchise gets a look. Even the Thrashers and Coyotes will get a game broadcast on Versus, do you think they'll ever get a look from the execs at NBC? Not a chance. Hell, even the Blue Jackets, Lightning, and Islanders get 5 appearances on Versus.

Now to be fair, NBC only gets 10 broadcasts, and Versus gets 58, and I recognize that fact. So to do I see the fact that those same teams Philly, Boston, Washington, Detroit, and Pittsburgh have as many, if not more, broadcasts on Versus than on NBC.

Yet this is supposed to be a "partnership" between the league and NBC. Not Gary Bettman bending over backwards so that NBC can squeeze every single rating out of his product. Oh we know that's how NBC works, we saw that in Pittsburgh during the Cup finals.

I think it's about time that the NHL starts looking back towards ESPN2 for NHL 2Night and really expanding Versus' offering, maybe even trying to get NHL Network on some basic cable offerings, because frankly, NBC isn't promoting the league like they should be. But they sure are promoting the same teams over and over again.

But hey, might as well queue up the Crosby vs. Ovechkin promo's, think they'll use the same ones as the past 2 years?

Oh and seriously, potentially 11 chances to see those Avalanche sans Sakic?!? Woooooooooo. To steal a phrase, vomit.


jamestobrien said...

All those Colorado appearances shows that NBC execs haven't watched hockey since Peter Forsberg had his spleen.

Anonymous said...

Keep in mind that there are no firm TV Schedules yet so let's not jump to conclusions.

NHL Jeff said...

I would also prefer to see more variation in teams broadcast on NBC, but a big part of the way BC picks those teams ins based on the size of the TV markets (and I think they assume teams like Detroit and Pittsburgh have their TV markets and are also popular around the country)

Vance said...

Yes, that's the rationale. NBC doesn't care about the hockey, they care about the money.

Here's the 2009 Winter Classic TV Ratings by city...

Top 10 Metered Markets:
1. Chicago 11.8/21
2. Detroit 10.5/20
3. Buffalo 10.1/20
4. St. Louis 5.3/10
5. Pittsburgh 4.4/8
6. Denver 4.2/10
7. Providence 3.5/7
8. Indianapolis 3.4/6
9. West Palm Beach 3.3/6
10. Orlando 3.2/5

Can't help but not see Philly, NY, or Washington on that list.

But those snowbirds in Florida seem to enjoy it.

NHL Jeff said...

Well no, Boston and Philly were not in the most watched for the 2009 WC, but Chicago and Detroit were, so we can assume Boston and Philly will be this year. So they'd rather their top 2 cities be the US's #4 (Philly) and #7 (Boston) markets that also have good hockey followings, as opposed to, say, the #12 market, Tampa, which, while still a large market, likely has a lesser hockey following.

Vance said...

Obviously Chicago and Detroit would have the highest ratings, their teams were in the game. In 2010 Boston and Philly will be at the top, but it's the cities below it that make their mark.

But also obvious, they'd rather a 2.5 share in the largest media market (NYC) than a 10 in the 53rd (Buffalo). No money in Buffalo, advertising wise or literally.

Vance said...

Annnnnd I'm pretty sure we're arguing the same point.

I'd just rather it not be about the money and about the hockey.

Fact: BanginPanger is not meant as an insult to the one and only Darren Pang, nor do I claim to be him. The views and opinions presented on BanginPanger are of my own, and no other namesake of the site, the NHL, Buffalo Sabres, Washington Capitals, or anyone else.