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ESPN MAKING ITS WAY THROUGH BARREN PRO SPORTS SEASON
Published November 1, 1994
Today's WALL STREET JOURNAL examines the effect the loss of baseball and hockey games have had on ESPN. The network is not "suffering any bruising effects from the baseball strike or the postponement of the hockey season," but ratings and ad revenue could have been higher without so much replacement programming. ESPN gave clients the chance to pull out their dollars, but according to Bob Perlstein, Exec VP at SFM Media, advertisers have stayed with the network primarily because "there is nothing else out there to reach a big male audience." Budweiser has not "moved a single dollar out of its sponsorship of hockey games." A spokesperson for Anheuser-Busch: "We have a fantastic program planned with the NHL. We're willing to sit patiently until hockey begins." Surprisingly, ESPN's ratings have risen from a year ago, as an ESPN spokesperson attributes the increase to college football, but officials are worried about the "impact of a lingering delay of the hockey season" (Kevin Goldman, WALL STREET JOURNAL, 11/1).