CBC and TSN: Brothers in arms again
The clock is ticking as Jay-Day approaches as TSN2 prepares to carry its first Blue Jays game.
While everyone involved insists that talks are continuing, the fact is that wars have been settled in less time than it's taken TSN and Rogers to settle this. From what I hear, there may have been less acrimony, too.
But there may be some hope that broadcasters and cable companies can put aside their differences and do what's best for the fan. While that sounds like a plot that even Disney would reject on grounds that fairy tales are more credible, the fact is that TSN and CBC are demonstrating that, as the great Rodney King once implored, we can all get along.
For the second time in the Stanley Cup playoffs, TSN and CBC have made a deal to give viewers a choice. On Thursday night, two Game 7s were scheduled to run on TSN and TSN2. But the two got together and made a deal that serves both the networks and the viewers: CBC got the Anaheim-Detroit game in return for future considerations.
No, that doesn't mean CBC gets the rights to Jennifer Hedger's hair. What it means is that TSN will get a yet-to-be-determined extra game in the next round.
It's fascinating to see CBC and TSN making nice after years of bad relations. It hearkens back to the good old days of the late `90s when the two shared the Olympics and Pan Am games, among other things.
But things fell apart a few years ago, partly because of those shared events, and the two became bitter enemies. Things reached bottom when TSN stepped in and
badly overpaid for purchased the Hockey Night In Canada theme song.
Credit the detente to CBC boss Scott Moore and TSN president Phil King, who go back a long way and are leading this daily singing of ``Kumbaya."
THE USUAL BUNCH OF NUMBERS
It's been a pretty good week for CBC, with Wednesday's Pittsburgh-Washington finale drawing 1.2 million viewers and the Vancouver Canucks' exit on Monday pulling in 1.75 million. .... Who says the Blue Jays aren't popular? Tuesday's showdown with the Yankees scored 530,000 viewers on Rogers Sportsnet even though there was a Stanley Cup playoff game on TSN. The Carolina-Boston game had 742,000 viewers. ... If you're wondering how the NHL is doing south of the border, the answer is: not as bad as you'd think. Versus is averaging 802,000 viewers, up 30 per cent over last spring. NBC is averaging 1.6 million viewers, up 14.5 per cent from 2008.