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              Conde Nast Sports for Women next month will take the
         name of the recently acquired 200,000-circulation Women's
         Sports & Fitness (WS&F), according to Lisa Granatstein of
         MEDIAWEEK.  Conde Nast says that the name change "reflects
         the book's focus on healthy, active lifestyle through both
         sports and fitness."  But Granatstein reports that the move
         "also represents a step back from the company's recent
         penchant for attaching its name to the titles of some of its
         books."  The words "Conde Nast" will appear on WS&F's spine,
         and Conde Nast "hopes the name change will also help clear
         up where the title should be placed on newsstands," moving
         it away from traditional men's sports titles.  Granatstein
         reports that following the June issue, due May 12, Conde
         Nast "will scale the title back from monthly to six per year
         and print on heavier stock" (MEDIAWEEK, 4/27 issue).

    Print | Tags: Media

              The NBA and NHL playoffs dominated this past weekend's
         TV sports coverage.  USA TODAY reports that Fox's NHL
         regional action on Sunday averaged a 2.3, down 8% from '97,
         while ESPN's ratings fell 38% to a .5 and ESPN2's "tumbled"
         29%, also to .5, for the first three nights of the playoffs
         (USA TODAY, 4/28).  In DC, Leonard Shapiro examines Fox's
         coverage of Sunday's Capitals-Bruins game under the header,
         "Upon Further Review, Fox, NHL, Got It Right."  Shapiro
         writes that "for the most part, Fox provided an ...
         outstanding broadcast, particularly on the production end." 
         He adds that viewers "were shown fabulous camera angles and
         replays galore," and notes that Fox's "ability to put
         microphones all over ... enhanced the coverage" (WASHINGTON
         POST, 4/28).  In Boston, Jim Greenidge reports that Sunday's
         Caps-Bruins game earned Fox's best-ever numbers in that
         market, posting an 8.2/17.  The rating peaked at 9.1 during
         the second overtime (Jim Greenidge, BOSTON GLOBE, 4/28).
              NBA ACTION: USA TODAY's reports that NBC's weekend
         playoff ratings dipped 6% to a 6.7.  While Sunday's rating
         was "about even" with the '97 number, Saturday's number
         dropped 12%.  TNT's Thursday/Friday NBA coverage jumped 21%
         from '97, to a 2.3 from 1.9 (USA TODAY, 4/28).  In Houston,
         David Barron writes that TNT's 2.9 rating for Rockets-Jazz
         Game One on Thursday is its highest number so far. 
         Saturday's Game Two of the Rockets-Jazz earned an 11.7/22
         local rating on Houston's KHTV (HOUSTON CHRONICLE, 4/28). 
         In N.Y., Richard Sandomir reviews NBC's pairing of Doug
         Collins and Isiah Thomas on its No. 1 NBA broadcast team,
         calling it "flawed."  Thomas, writes Sandomir, "has improved
         since his awkward start ... [b]ut [he] is not a No. 1
         analyst, and no one should have expected him to be."  Noting
         that Collins was hired "because he became the best NBA
         analyst" at TNT, Sandomir asks, "Why hire the best only to
         make him split time with a rookie?" (N.Y. TIMES, 4/28). 
              CATCH AIR: Turner Sports will unveil the new
         SporTVision System technology, which measures a player's
         vertical leap, during tonight's Heat-Knicks broadcast from
         MSG.  Turner will also use the measuring system, known as
         AIRf/x, on tomorrow's Nets-Bulls game (SporTVision).

    Print | Tags: Boston Bruins, Cablevision, Chicago Bulls, ESPN, Houston Rockets, Madison Square Garden, Miami Heat, NBA, NBC, Brooklyn Nets, New York Knicks, NHL, Media, Turner Sports, Utah Jazz, Walt Disney, Washington Capitals

              Fox Sports "will wade into the crowded sports-magazine
         waters" in a joint venture with Petersen Publishing Co.,
         according to Jensen & Kerwin of AD AGE.  Fox and Petersen
         will produce the "Fox Sports NFL '98 Preview" insert, which
         "could be the first step toward developing a sports magazine
         to go up against" SI and ESPN.  The football preview insert
         will be distributed through seven Petersen titles, including
         Four Wheel & Off Road, Hot Rod, Motor Trend, Motorcyclist,
         Mountain Biker, Petersen's Sport Truck and Sport.  Total
         circulation will be about 4 million.  The insert will have
         36 pages, includes "at least" 10 ad pages.  Fox Sports
         Senior VP/Marketing Neal Tiles said that the venture is
         being viewed as "a promotional platform for Fox Sports," and
         is "a way to think about a strategic partnership" with
         Petersen.  Tiles: "We are testing the waters."  Jensen &
         Kerwin add that "most likely, the joint venture next will
         create similar preview publications tied to the network's
         other sports properties, specifically" baseball and hockey. 
         The NFL content will feature Fox personalities such as Howie
         Long and John Madden (AD AGE, 4/27 issue).

    Print | Tags: ESPN, NFL, Sports Illustrated, Media, Walt Disney

              CITIES OF ANGELS: In N.Y., Richard Sandomir notes the
         frequency of Angels' telecasts on Disney-parent ESPN's MLB
         action this season, pointing out that following its upcoming
         broadcast of the Angels-White Sox game on May 3, ESPN will
         have carried five Angels games this season, two more than
         any other team.  Sandomir writes that with Disney holding
         controlling interest in the Angels and ESPN, "it's easy to
         label this a conspiracy."  But ESPN VP/Communications Chris
         LaPlaca said, "There is no shadowy programmer on the grassy
         knoll.  Even Oliver Stone would have a hard time making
         something out of this" (Richard Sandomir, N.Y. TIMES, 4/28).
              NOTES: In Cincinnati, John Fay wrote that no decision
         has been made on whether Pete Rose will get a bigger role on
         FSN's "The Last Word" following his stint as co-host last
         week, but added that Rose's "gig probably earned him strong
         consideration" (CINCINNATI ENQUIRER, 4/27)....More turnover
         at the N.Y. Daily News sports dept. after Frank Brown left
         to work for the NHL.  Daily News Sunday Sports Editor Dave
         Kaplan "will soon leave" for the Yogi Berra Museum.  Also,
         Assistant Sports Editor Eric Gerard and Associate Sports
         Editor Anthony Rieber are "both leaving" the paper for
         journalism jobs outside NYC (CRAIN'S NEW YORK BUSINESS,
         4/27)....VARIETY's Rich Katz reports that the dispute
         between the NFL and CBS and Fox over the nets' stations
         being barred from using NFL clips in Sunday night highlight
         shows "will be resolved amicably this week."  The compromise
         reportedly allows "limited highlights in select markets of
         the home team's games," and sources said that it "satisfies"
         all parties concerned (VARIETY, 4/27 issue).

    Print | Tags: LA Angels, CBS, Chicago White Sox, ESPN, MLB, NFL, NHL, Media, Viacom, Walt Disney

              ABC Religion Correspondent Peggy Wehmeyer interviewed
         Packers DE Reggie White on "20/20," one of only a few
         interviews since his controversial speech earlier this month
         to the WI Legislature.  White, on how the speech affected
         his chances of working for CBS Sports: "I lost my
         opportunity to work at CBS.  They don't want me to work for
         them.  Praise god."  Wehmeyer reported White said that "a
         contract with the network was virtually a done deal," and
         after the speech, CBS Sports President Sean McManus
         "canceled, saying he didn't want to have to deal with
         disruptions from gay militants."  White: "That don't make me
         mad.  I'm angry because what I said [about homosexuals] was
         the truth."  CBS issued a statement regarding White saying
         it "hadn't finalized an agreement" with him and that the
         decision not to hire him had nothing to do with "influences
         from any special interest groups" (ABC, 4/27).  

    Print | Tags: ABC, CBS, Green Bay Packers, Media, Viacom, Walt Disney
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