Fox Sports Detroit (FSD) "hasn't come to terms" with
two "major" cable operators, Media One and Comcast,
according to Bev Eckman of the DETROIT NEWS. Media One
"charges" that FSD has raised fees "drastically," while FSD
execs contend that its phone calls to negotiate "are not
being returned." Media One's Bill Black: "Fox overpaid the
state's hottest sports team (the Red Wings) to buy a way
into the market, and they would like to see their excessive
costs put on the backs of our customers." Black would not
say what FSD is charging for carriage. Fox VP/Media
Relations Vince Wladika said that FSD "has agreements with
more than 30 cable systems totaling 1 million households,
and everyone thinks [FSD] is a good channel and a good
value." FSD is in talks with Comcast (DETROIT NEWS, 9/16).
FOX DETROIT, DIRECT: DIRECTV will offer FSD as part of
its programming lineup (DIRECTV)....FSD's promo campaign,
with the tagline, "Home Teams. Fox Attitude," features
outdoor, print, radio and TV ads in the Detroit market and
includes Grant Hill and Steve Yzerman (FSD)....CA-based
WorldLink will expand its relationship with Fox Sports Net
beginning October 1 where WorldLink, the exclusive
infomercial sales reps for FSN affils, become the exclusive
direct response spot sales reps and will add infomercial and
direct response spot sales for FSD (WorldLink).
RATINGS: TNT's Jets-Patriots game on Sunday night
earned a 9.2 rating, making it the 8th-highest rated game in
network history. It was watched by an estimated 6.7 million
households, which would be the third most in network history
(THE DAILY). The game's simulcast on N.Y.'s WPIX-TV earned
a 12.3 rating, the highest since a '94 Giants-Cards game
that earned a 15.2 (N.Y. TIMES, 9/16). In Boston, WLVI-TV
earned a 27.7 rating for its simulcast of the game. With
TNT's 14.1 rating, the game earned a 41.8 in Boston, a
record for a regular-season game (BOSTON GLOBE, 9/16).
RADIO: In N.Y., Bob Raissman writes that MLB's national
radio deal will be moving from CBS Radio to ESPN Radio for a
reported purchase price of $40M (N.Y. DAILY NEWS, 9/16).
TV/VIDEO: The first live HDTV broadcast of an MLB game
will take place today with the Indians-Orioles. The Harris
Corporation will show the game on digital TV equipment at
Washington, DC's National Press Club (MLB)....BRANDWEEK
reports that MLB "is considering a divorce" from Phoenix
Communications, its video production house and video
library, which handles "This Week in Baseball" and other
league productions (BRANDWEEK, 9/15 issue).
PROFILES: In the AMERICAN JOURNALISM REVIEW, Mark
Lisheron writes a career profile of Keith Olbermann.
Olbermann: "I have never mistaken myself for Coca-Cola or
Pepsi. I'm birch beer or ginger ale or Dr. Pepper. If you
want what's in the middle you don't hire someone like Keith
Olbermann (AJR, 9/97 issue)....Polly Perkins, the new
president of Petersen Publishing's Sport magazine group is
profiled by Ylonda Gault of CRAIN'S N.Y. BUSINESS. Industry
"insiders" say that Perkins "has a fighting chance" to make
Sport "a big hit" (CRAIN'S N.Y. BUSINESS, 9/15 issue).
Hurricanes GM Jim Rutherford said that the team could
announce a TV deal this week that will put 25 to 30 games on
three networks during the '97-98 season, according to Scott
Michaux of the Greensboro NEWS & RECORD. Games will be seen
on Fox SportsSouth, HTS and Capital Broadcasting. The NEWS
& RECORD'S Michaux adds that the package "is far smaller"
than had been desired (Greensboro NEWS & RECORD, 9/16).
NEWS & NOTES: The Lightning has added WLVU-FM to the
SportsChannel Radio/Lightning Network for the '97-98 season
(Lightning)....Entercom Communications "landed" the Royals'
radio broadcast rights and its local station, KMBZ-AM, will
be the team's flagship in '98 (K.C. STAR, 9/13).