TBS To Film Series About Kenny Smith Dodgers Renew Rights With KLAC-AM Fox Unveils MLB Playoff On-Air Talent NHL Closes On $1.4B Credit Facility All-Female Sports Talk Show To Debut SI, Travel Channel Plan Swimsuit Series T'Wolves Line Up Midnight Event AEG Seeks Extension On L.A. Stadium Project FCC Ends Its Sports Blackout Rule Sources: Chivas USA Suspending Operations
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After more than 20 years of association with British Columbia Television [BCTV], "the Canucks will move their regional telecasts" to Vancouver TV [VTV], a Baton Broadcasting station launched last fall, according to Grant Kerr of the Toronto GLOBE & MAIL. VTV will telecast 27-30 Canucks games in '98-99, along with 24 Grizzlies games. Financial details of the two-year deal, plus an option year, were not disclosed. BCTV paid an estimated C$1.7M to broadcast the Canucks this season, and reports in Vancouver put VTV's bid at C$2.7M a year. BCTV's sister station, CHEK-TV, handled Grizzlies games. Details of their new agreement were not available (Toronto GLOBE & MAIL, 4/9).
In K.C., club and network sources say that Chiefs RB Marcus Allen will announce his retirement today and join CBS Sports as an NFL studio analyst (K.C. STAR, 4/9)....ESPN has tapped the AP's Electronic News Production System as its newsroom computer system. The system features a fully integrated search engine, complete off-line and remote access capabilities for field staff, and the ability to work in any language (BROADCASTING & CABLE, 4/6 issue)....News Corp.-backed Sky Latin America and Fox Sports Americas "have bagged rights to most of the Chilean soccer to be broadcast over the next five years." Between them, Sky and FSA have exclusive rights to 90 out of 120 league games per season. FSA will carry one game per week through the 30-week season. DAILY VARIETY's Andrew Paxman wrote that the for Fox, "the deal signals the latest blow in its high-stakes battle with ESPN for pole position in the Spanish-speaking Americas" (DAILY VARIETY, 4/8)....British Sky Broadcasting and Scottish Media Group "are shutting down Sky Scottish, their soccer-based TV channel, after a run of less than 18 months." The 50/50 joint venture will close May 31 (DAILY VARIETY, 4/8)....Fox Sports Detroit will showcase a 22 foot- by-10 foot mobile Go Tigers! billboard today and tomorrow at various locations in metro Detroit. The billboard reads, "Go Tigers! Good Luck From Your Fans!" (Fox Sports Detroit).
AudioNet and the Yankees announced a three-year exclusive contract under which AudioNet will broadcast live action of Yankees games at www.yankees.com. Additional coverage will include "Yankees Magazine," a weekly live show with audio and video; Yankees Online, broadcasting exclusive reports on players; live chats with players and coaches; and vintage audio and video highlights (AudioNet). MLB ONLINE NOTES: Roger Clemens' new Web site, www.rocketroger.com, was launched last week. The site will feature a post-game interview after each of Clemens' starts this season, as well as a pitch-by-pitch breakdown of each start, and a monthly chat with Clemens (THE DAILY). Officials at Sports Internet Marketing, the company that developed Clemens' Web site, said the site has been getting "roughly" 6,000 visits a day since its debut (TORONTO STAR, 4/8)....The Cubs' official Web site, www.cubs.com, experienced a "record level of traffic" last Friday for the team's home opener. The site generated "nearly" 250,000 page views and quadrupled the '97 single-day high. Also, approximately 25,000 tuned into the Cubs radio broadcast that was available through the site (CHICAGO TRIBUNE, 4/8).