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FOX'S GOREN SAID NET MUST "MAINTAIN A DISTANCE" FROM DODGERS
Published June 1, 1998
Fox Sports Exec Producer Ed Goren discussed the net's relationship with the Dodgers with Tom Hoffarth of the L.A. DAILY NEWS. When asked about any predisposed favoritism toward the Fox-owned Dodgers, Goren said, "I'm not convinced the Dodgers in the World Series may be best for Fox Sports. Atlanta isn't bad. The Chicago Cubs? If you told me tomorrow we'd have a World Series with the Yankees and the Cubs, you think I'd be disappointed? ... I feel no different about the Dodgers than I do [Rupert Murdoch's] Times of London." Goren, on Fox's handling of the Dodgers being put "under a microscope," while alluding to Disney's ownership of ESPN and the Angles: "Put it this way, if we covered (the Dodgers) Opening Day -- which we don't -- I could not have Joe Buck acting as master of ceremonies at Dodger Stadium. ... It's critical we (the network) maintain a distance from [the Dodgers] operation" (L.A. DAILY NEWS, 5/31). MORE ON FOX: Fox's MLB season debut earned a 4.0/12 overnight rating and USA TODAY's Michael Hiestand writes that Fox "had plenty of production wrinkles that, at the very least, make baseball games seem like they move along faster than they really do." Hiestand adds that Fox "seems motivated" about MLB since its Dodgers acquisition and notes that during Sunday's NHL broadcast, Fox's John Davidson promoted an upcoming Dodgers game on Fox and wondered who would pitch "for us" (Michael Hiestand, USA TODAY, 6/1). BOWMAN DOESN'T PUCKER-UP: Red Wings coach Scotty Bowman "criticized" the FoxTrax puck used Sunday, saying it was "bouncing like a ball." Bowman: "I hope the NHL is researching that puck." But NHL VP/Hockey Operations Brian Burke downplayed the criticism: "Everyone didn't make it an issue -- Scotty Bowman did. If it wasn't that, it would have been something else" (DETROIT FREE PRESS, 6/1). Due to the computer chip, the puck can't be frozen, and Bowman said, "I can't believe the NHL would use a puck that's not 100 percent like the other one." In Dallas, Rick Gosselin notes that the NHL "carefully omitted Bowman's quotes from its post-game quote sheets" (DALLAS MORNING NEWS, 6/1).