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Old 01-02-2008, 12:37 AM
StarnetGypsy StarnetGypsy is offline
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Default Only Sports Bettors Have Use for the NFL Network: NFL Doesn't Want Sports Bettors

All during what can easily be considered one of the most important games of the decade, we were inundated with ads for the three year old NFL Network. There is a sort of irony here. Few who watch NFL football really need the NFL Network. The vast majority of NFL football fans have their home team games televised each week on local broadcast stations (and sometimes nationally). The typical Giants fan tends not to care about Cleveland verses Pittsburgh.

So who watches those otherwise meaningless games (think Arizona vs. Detroit)? Sports bettors. In fact, it's the sports bettor who typically upgrades to DirecTV in order to get every game on the card. But the NFL has steadfastly supported online gambling prohibition since betting on the Web first started in 1996. It was the NFL that fought to prosecute the founder of World Sports Exchange, Jay Cohen (as discovery from the NFL's law firm, Debevoise & Plimpton, demonstrated - see page 203). Likewise, the NFL was a big backer of recent legislation to stop online gambling, the Unlawful Internet Gambling Enforcement Act (UIGEA).

Now the NFL blames the cable stations for not wanting to carry the NFL Network. If people really wanted it, the cable networks would show it. But aside from a few hardcore football fans, most of whom are betting on the games anyway, it seems logical that the only people willing to pay a premium to watch the NFL Network would be sports bettors who often wager on a series of games throughout Sunday.

Thankfully, the only price NFL fans had to pay to watch the Giants vs. Patriots game Saturday night was having to listen to nonstop self-promotions for the NFL Network.

The NFL vs. The Cable Stations

On Saturday night, the New York Giants played the New England Patriots, a game with absolutely zero Playoff ramifications. Instead, there was history to be made. Either the Patriots were to become only the second team in NFL history to enjoy a perfect regular season or the New York Giants would become the first team of the season to stop this from happening (perhaps an even more lofty goal).

Following much protest over the past week, the NFL caved in and ended up simulcasting this game on both CBS and NBC, not to mention their NFL Network. One of the season's most imp0rtant games between the Green Bay Packers and Dallas Cowboys had previously been shown only on the NFL Network, and only a choice few saw the Cowboys win. Many football fans were caught off guard. This is a game people may have paid for but it's a game that is clearly made for national network viewing, not the NFL Network.

Had the Giants/Patriots game been televised exclusively on the NFL Network, this would have left millions of NFL fans in the dark. Even if people did want to purchase the NFL Network, most would not be able to - at least not from their cable provider.

The NFL Network is shown only on satellite TV and on Comcast (NSDQ: CMCSA)'s premium-tier cable package, which restricts it to around 43 million subscribers, or something like 32% of U.S. households, according to Richard Martin of Information Weekly. The reason: The NFL wants to charge the cable companies a premium for carrying its broadcasts ($7 to $9 per household, about twice as much as NBA TV), and as a result the cable companies have either put it on their premium packages (Comcast) or declined to carry it altogether (Time Warner and Cablevision).

"In the case of Giants-Patriots, the league, facing legions of disgruntled fans, not to mention possible congressional scrutiny, relented: The game will actually be shown on both NBC and CBS (rebroadcasting the NFLN coverage)."

NFL commissioner Roger Goodell claimed at the start of the game that the decision to simulcast it on two major television networks was for the sake of the fans, yet it became obvious this was a means of exposing everyone to the NFL Network through nonstop promotional efforts. The game itself was airing from the NFL Network.

It's doubtful fans will protest the desire to have the NFL Network. Supporting measures that prohibit fans from betting on the sport and now trying to force their network down fans throats, the league is not likely to receive much sympathy, certainly not from the readers of this website, Gambling911.com.

----

Christopher Costigan, Gambling911.com Publisher CCostigan@CostiganMedia.com
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Old 01-03-2008, 05:06 AM
Uncle B Uncle B is offline
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I'm glad it's failing....screw the NFL..
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Old 01-03-2008, 11:57 AM
mikeymike mikeymike is offline
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Greg Gumbel is clueless when it comes to football.
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Old 01-03-2008, 12:29 PM
StarnetGypsy StarnetGypsy is offline
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he's clueless about alot of things, women included. he got taken off the morning show he was on because the women were complaining he was a sexist, so because his daddy is a CBS bigwig they shuffled him around till they found a slot for him on NFLtv ...
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Old 01-03-2008, 12:37 PM
stevo stevo is offline
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Quote:
Originally Posted by StarnetGypsy View Post
he's clueless about alot of things, women included. he got taken off the morning show he was on because the women were complaining he was a sexist, so because his daddy is a CBS bigwig they shuffled him around till they found a slot for him on NFLtv ...

I did not know that Gyps. Now it makes sense. The bigwig part. Always came off snooty on the morning show. Just dont like him.
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Old 01-03-2008, 03:30 PM
bbqguy bbqguy is offline
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$7 - 9 per household? that is flat out the wrong info
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Old 01-03-2008, 09:01 PM
wagnerrodney wagnerrodney is offline
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Quote:
Originally Posted by bbqguy View Post
$7 - 9 per household? that is flat out the wrong info
Ehm... And the right info is?
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Old 01-04-2008, 12:58 AM
Uncle B Uncle B is offline
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I did not know that Gyps. Now it makes sense. The bigwig part. Always came off snooty on the morning show. Just dont like him.


I don't like him either, never have.
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