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Published September 23, 1997
JUST SOME GOOD OL' BOYS: In Charlotte, Kay McFadden gives Fox's NASCAR film, "Steel Chariots," which debuts tonight at 8:00pm ET, a "B," and calls it "a well-produced family movie that makes the most of NASCAR as a backdrop." McFadden: "As for the racing itself, the filmmakers take a pass on big crashes in favor of dialogue-intensive pit stops. ... [M]ost of the action is off-track and focuses on the week leading up to Talladega" (CHARL. OBSERVER, 9/23). FOX PROGRAMMING: Fox Sports Americas (FSA) has acquired the Latin American rights to the Ryder Cup (FSA)....Fox Sports Southwest (FSS) reached agreement with Community Communications Company to expand into 16 AK communities reaching over 8,000 subscribers (FSS)....The '97 John R. Wooden Classic will be televised nationally by Fox Sports Net. The doubleheader features Georgia-Stanford and UCLA- New Mexico (John R. Wooden Classic). GENERAL: More than 20% of MSNBC's Internet operation will be "laid off as Microsoft presses to cut costs at all of its Web-publishing businesses." Sources said about 50 of the operation's 230 employees could be laid off (SEATTLE TIMES, 9/22)....The Elias Sports Bureau will serve as the official statistical consultant to the NHL. Elias will develop, maintain and update a historical database dating back to 1917, the year the NHL was formed (NHL).