SBD/Issue 177/Sports Media

NFL Network Turns Super Bowl Host Vote Into TV Spectacular

NFL Network Turns Another
Non-Sports Event Into A TV Success

The NFL with yesterday's vote to determine the host of Super Bowl XLVIII "turned another non-sports event into a TV spectacular," according to Neil Best of NEWSDAY. Perhaps the "strangest thing about the NFL Network's special" surrounding yesterday's vote was "that it didn't seem all that strange." The coverage "came with all the now-familiar trimmings of draft day, including reports from each of the bidders' 'war' rooms and word that each group was 'on the clock' when it was time to present." With other media outlets "left to follow the action on the league-owned channel, it did provide some interesting glimpses of a process that previously was conducted behind closed doors," especially when Giants Treasurer Jonathan Tisch "grew emotional when discussing" late team owners Bob Tisch and Wellington Mara (NEWSDAY, 5/26). As the owners were shown on camera handing in their secret ballots to determine the site of the game, NFL Network's Rich Eisen said, "You are again watching an unprecedented sports television event" (NFL Network, 5/25). The WALL STREET JOURNAL's Jason Gay writes, "We had really thought the NFL had reached its fetishistic TV nadir with endless live coverage of its draft, but Tuesday's owner's deliberations at the Omni Mandalay in Texas made the draft feel like 'The Bourne Identity.'" Eisen during the coverage said, "You're watching the sausage get made right now." Gay writes, "How we wish, Mr. Eisen! A sopressata's genesis is downright exhilarating compared with moguls slowly rising from oversized easy chairs to deliver ballots" (WALL STREET JOURNAL, 5/26).

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