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Volume 24 No. 156

Sports Media

          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). 
     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).