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Old 12-26-2007, 09:30 PM   #1
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Angry Patriots' Historic Game to Be Available to All of America, After All

NEW YORK (AP) -After weeks of insisting they wouldn't cave in, NFL officials did just that Wednesday. Now all of America can see the Patriots' shot at history.

Saturday night's game between New England and the New York Giants on the NFL Network, which is available in fewer than 40 percent of the nation's homes with TVs, will be simulcast on CBS and NBC.

The Patriots could become the first NFL team to go 16-0 in the regular season.

"We have taken this extraordinary step because it is in the best interest of our fans," commissioner Roger Goodell said in a statement after the league announced it was reversing course. "What we have seen for the past year is a very strong consumer demand for NFL Network. We appreciate CBS and NBC delivering the NFL Network telecast on Saturday night to the broad audience that deserves to see this potentially historic game. Our commitment to the NFL Network is stronger than ever."

NFL Network spokesman Seth Palansky said officials would have no further comment Wednesday.

The NFL had claimed that the onus of making the game widely available fell on the major cable providers with which the league has bitterly feuded. Companies such as Comcast and Time Warner have declined to carry the network as part of basic packages.

But lawmakers have pressured the NFL to ensure more viewers could see the game. Last week, two prominent members of the Senate Judiciary Committee sent a letter to Goodell threatening to reconsider the league's antitrust exemption.

Sen. Patrick Leahy, D-Vt., who co-wrote the letter with Sen. Arlen Specter, R-Pa., said he was "delighted" by the NFL's concession.

"I think it was a smart move on their part," he said in a phone interview.

Leahy expected to speak with Goodell again next month about the ongoing question of how many fans will be able to see games on the channel. Saturday's matchup wraps up the NFL Network's second season of airing live contests, with eight per year. This one and a key Thursday night game between Green Bay and Dallas last month drew widespread complaints about the lack of availability.

"I never completely gave up hope, but I was getting a little discouraged Christmas afternoon when we still had not gotten a positive answer," said Leahy, who added that his staff members were talking with NFL officials during the holiday.

Local TV affiliates in the Boston, Manchester, N.H., and New York areas that were already set to simulcast the game under NFL policy will still air it. That means viewers in those markets will have four channels to choose from if they get NFL Network.

That did not make officials at WWOR in New York happy.

"The NFL is in clear violation of their agreement with WWOR/My9," the station said in a statement. "We fully expect the league to honor their commitment to My9 as the exclusive free over-the-air broadcaster for Saturday's telecast of the New England Patriots at New York Giants game."

Sen. John Kerry, D-Mass., who had urged cable and NFL executives to settle the dispute, had a much more positive reaction to the league's announcement.

"I couldn't be more thrilled that as the Patriots rush toward an historic undefeated season, football fans everywhere have won a victory of their own," Kerry said. "With today's announcement, the NFL showed their loyalty to the sports fans who made the NFL an empire in the first place.

"The best news of all is that now no die-hard Pats fans will be shut out from watching their team take aim at football history," Kerry said in a statement.

This will be the first three-network simulcast in NFL history and the first simulcast of an NFL game since the inaugural Super Bowl in 1967, when CBS and NBC televised the meeting of the champions of the newly merged National Football League and American Football League.

"We're happy to accommodate the NFL's request for a joint national simulcast of this potentially historic game to make it available to the widest possible audience," said Dick Ebersol, NBC Universal's chairman for sports and Olympics.

NBC was scheduled to air "Dateline NBC" and a repeat of "Law & Order: SVU" during the time slot. CBS was set to broadcast the movie "Good Night, and Good Luck" and "48 Hours: Mysteries."

http://sports.excite.com/news/12262007/v0063.html
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Old 12-26-2007, 09:33 PM   #2
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Default Re: Patriots' Historic Game to Be Available to All of America, After All

3 things. 1st, perhaps the title should've been "Cheaters' Historic Game to Be Available to All Haters, After All"

2nd, why does Mr. Goodell think that it's the interest of all fans? Is he really in love with the New England Cameramen?

3rd, NBC still suck in my book 4 canceling "Friends" sitcom "Joey!"
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Old 12-26-2007, 09:47 PM   #3
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Default Re: Patriots' Historic Game to Be Available to All of America, After All

three different networks isn't that a bit of overkill? Amazing how these networks are tripping all over each other to kiss Kraft's and the Cheatriots asses. It just make me want to
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Old 12-26-2007, 09:58 PM   #4
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Default Re: Patriots' Historic Game to Be Available to All of America, After All

I was already set.
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Old 12-26-2007, 10:00 PM   #5
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Default Re: Patriots' Historic Game to Be Available to All of America, After All

They can put it on 100 channels, I won't be watching.
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Old 12-26-2007, 10:08 PM   #6
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Default Re: Patriots' Historic Game to Be Available to All of America, After All

Funny...

actually, there has been 3 other teams or was it four, to go undefeated through the regular season. It is only if they win the SB that it becomes real special. So they won a couple extra games. Do I really care? Nope.

It sure is amazing what you can do with a video camera these days.
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Old 12-26-2007, 10:21 PM   #7
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Default Re: Patriots' Historic Game to Be Available to All of America, After All

Interesting isn't it that it was decided to put the game on CBS after all ... in the best interest of the 'fans' ... yeah right. This on the heels of the announcement that CBS and Cheatriots owner Kraft have joined together on restaurant venture - quite an expensive one at that ......

Does anyone else see this as the bull that it is? I mean come on..... the only people that care about the Cheatriots possibly going undefeated is their fans (which don't touch the Steelers in numbers) and the media - so are they doing this for the small amount of Cheatriots fans out there? Lame....
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Old 12-26-2007, 10:31 PM   #8
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Default Re: Patriots' Historic Game to Be Available to All of America, After All

This does suck...big time.....The Patriot fan base will NEVER be as big as Steeler Nation or even the Cowgirl fanbase.....yet the damn patriots game is going to be broadcast all over the place?

This is absolute, biased, favoritism bullshit. If they broadcast THIS game over CBS or NBC...they need to broadcast ALL NFL Network games over CBS or NBC to those that don't get it.....

I was having a good day until I read this article....this is bullshit.
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Old 12-26-2007, 11:39 PM   #9
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Default Re: Patriots' Historic Game to Be Available to All of America, After All

Maybe Belichick will rest everybody. So the hundreds of reporters and networks on scene will all look ridiculous.
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Old 12-26-2007, 11:42 PM   #10
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Default Re: Patriots' Historic Game to Be Available to All of America, After All

Quote:
Originally Posted by The Patriot View Post
Maybe Belichick will rest everybody. So the hundreds of reporters and networks on scene will all look ridiculous.
That would be funny... and keeping within his personality.

However, I think he is so ticked at being caught, that he wants to bury the story of cheating by going undefeated...

Unfortunately, it is working.
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