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         Fox Sports has promised to present a new approach when it
    debuts the "NHL on Fox" on April 2, but there's nothing new about
    the hockey promos Fox has been running, according to a senior
    exec at ESPN.  Judy Fearing, ESPN's Senior VP of Marketing, says
    the spots are a merely a copy of ESPN's two-year-old NHL
    marketing campaign.  Fearing told THE SPORTS BUSINESS DAILY,
    "When you look at it there's absolutely nothing new there.  That
    to me is where we get a little concerned. ... We really feel that
    we've set the standard, and that we've made a significant
    investment in establishing a fresh and unique personality.  And
    now we're being copied."  Fearing doubts that ESPN would consider
    any legal action, and added that -- in the long run -- what's
    good for hockey is good for ESPN.  Fearing:  "I guess if I step
    back and try to look at the bigger picture I really hope that
    they're successful.  Because if they are, more people are going
    to be tuning into the sport of hockey -- and once they really
    understand the game, they will all come over and watch it on
    ESPN."  In response, Fox Sports spokesperson Lou Dermilio said:
    "We think that ESPN does a fabulous job with their promos."  Fox
    debuted their NHL promos during their prime-time programming in
    recent months, while ESPN's spots, produced by Portland, OR-based
    ad agency Wieden & Kennedy, have been running on the network
    since in 1993, soon after ESPN regained rights to the NHL (THE
         AND NOW, BACK TO THE GAMES:  In Toronto, Rob Longley
    profiles what to expect from Fox's game telecasts.  Besides the
    score/clock box that the network debuted in its NFL telecast,
    Longley notes that Fox "apparently lobbied the NHL" to increase
    the length of intermissions from 15 to 18 minutes, and to allow
    90-second ad timeouts during play, instead of 60-second timeouts
    (TORONTO SUN, 3/24).

    Print | Tags: ESPN, NFL, NHL, Media, Walt Disney, Wieden Kennedy

         Sunday's record rating for NBC's coverage of Michael
    Jordan's return raised the network's season-to-date NBA average
    to a 5.4 rating and a 13 share -- an 8% increase from last year
    (NBC).  At one poiunt this season, NBC's regular-season NBA
    rating was off 23% (Rudy Martzke, USA TODAY, 3/24)....The MSG
    Network will not air Yankee exhibition games today and tomorrow
    "to protest the team's demand that MSG pay full price for
    replacement games" (Richard Sandomir, N.Y. TIMES, 3/24)....Dantia
    Gould of Gould Media Services is publishing a report on Women's
    Television Sports, due out March 31.  "Women's Television Sports"
    assesses the state of women's sports and analyzes which sports
    get TV coverage (Gould Media).

    Print | Tags: Cablevision, Madison Square Garden, NBA, NBC, Media
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