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The Golf Channel has signed a distribution agreement with Telesynergy, Inc, a consortium of cable companies serving 3.8M subscribers throughout the country via its 12 member Multi-System Operators (MSO). The deal was announced by Joseph Gibbs, President and CEO of The Golf Channel. Gibbs: "Reaching this agreement with Telesynergy further enhances our stature as a truly national service." Gibbs said Telesynergy's "diverse group of MSO's" would help in bringing the new network into more homes across the U.S. (The Golf Channel).
The Empire Sports Network is launching a new weekly show featuring the Sabres. "Sabres Breakaway" will feature different Buffalo players and be taped from different sites around Western New York (Empire Sports)....USA Network's Dan Schoenberg notes that USA's Westminster Dog Show got a 3.0 rating on Monday, to a 2.7 for the ESPY's (Rudy Martzke, USA TODAY, 2/15)....Bell Atlantic is expected to announce today that it is dropping AT&T as its "systems integrator" supervising the design and construction of Bell Atlantic's interactive video network (N.Y. TIMES, 2/16).
The NBA expansion draft, scheduled to be held on June 24 or 26, should get the same live TV treatment as yesterday's NFL expansion draft, according to Neil Campbell of the Toronto GLOBE & MAIL. As planned now, the Grizzlies and Raptors will make their choices over the phone to the league office in New York. Writes Campbell, "That's too bad. In fact, it's downright silly. The NBA is supposed to be a step or two ahead of the other leagues in terms of marketing and public relations. Fans in Vancouver and Toronto, who have shelled out millions for season tickets, deserve to see their new players picked one by one. They deserve to know who are these guys, what can they do and why were they made available. They deserve to have issues explained to them such as why the expansion teams will play with a smaller salary cap. Only live television can act as this type of conduit" (Toronto GLOBE & MAIL, 2/16). USA TODAY's Rudy Martzke writes that ESPN made yesterday's NFL draft "an interesting telecast, with graphics and remote reports from a taxi squad of reporters" (USA TODAY, 2/16).