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TEAM MEDIA NOTES: BULLS SET RECORD FOR SPORTSCHANNEL
Published April 18, 1996
The Bulls' win over the Bucks on Tuesday, their 70th win of the season, propelled SportsChannel Chicago to its own "record- breaking number." The telecast gained a 22.9 rating and a 33 share, surpassing the previous record set by a '95 Bulls-Hornets playoff game of 20.5/29. SportsChannel was the most watched network in the Chicago market from 7:00pm to 10:00pm CDT (SportsChannel). For the 42 games before Tuesday, the Bulls' average SportsChannel rating this year was a 10.1 (Michael Hirsley, CHICAGO TRIBUNE, 4/18). CAPS BLACKOUT: Neither of the Capitals' two first-round playoff games against the Penguins will be on free over-the-air TV or local cable carrier, HTS. Game 1 last night was on ESPN2 and Game 2 will be on ESPN. Capitals VP of Communications Matt Williams said last night's game was offered to WBDC-50, a WB affiliate, who chose not to air it in place of network programming. As for Game 2, WBDC said it would air the Capitals instead of a already scheduled Bullets broadcast, but Washington Sports, the "umbrella group" for both teams, refused that offer, according to Williams. Williams: "They were willing to flip- flop, but we have a 30-game commitment to [Bullets] advertisers. We figured that most people get ESPN." Game 3 will be on WBDC, but Game 4 will run up against WB's Wednesday programming. HTS, which has the Orioles that night, will produce the game and is working with cable operators to arrange secondary channel access (Len Hochberg, WASHINGTON POST, 4/17). INDIANS EXTEND DEAL: The Indians and SportsChannel Ohio have signed a three-year extension that will run through the '98 season (SportsChannel). COYOTES TAKING OFFERS: The "front-runner" for TV rights to the Coyotes in Phoenix are MAC America stations, KTVK-TV (Ch. 3) and KASW-TV (Ch. 61). The ARIZONA REPUBLIC's Tim Tyers reports Channel 3 is interested in the coach's show and other shows, as well as selected games, although "the bulk of games" will be on KASW-61. As for radio, the Chuck Artigue-owned consortium of KUPD-FM, KDKB-FM and KUPD2-AM is leading over the Pulitzer Broadcasting-owned KTAR-AM and KKLT-FM. Coyotes CEO Shawn Hunter: "We haven't closed negotiations, but we're excited by all of our possibilities" (ARIZONA REPUBLIC, 4/18). MORE ON THE CLIPPERS: The L.A. TIMES estimates the Clippers' five-year deal with Prime Sports at over $18M. The team's broadcast contract with KCOP-TV (Channel 13) is over after this season, but team officials "are working on a new deal with either Channel 13 or another independent station" (Larry Stewart, L.A. TIMES, 4/17).