SBD/1/Sports Media

FOX'S GOREN SAID NET MUST "MAINTAIN A DISTANCE" FROM DODGERS

          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).  

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