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Why does ESPN Classic show so much poker, billiards, and bowling?

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  • Why does ESPN Classic show so much poker, billiards, and bowling?

    If you take a look at their schedule, they show many, many hours of poker, billiards, and bowling per week, but very little, if any, baseball, even in the summer. There's also very little hockey.

    I don't think it's really ratings-related. I don't think people would rather watch bowling & billiards rather than baseball.

    Is it just less expensive for them to show poker, billiards, & bowling instead of baseball? I'm not sure what their reasoning is behind it. I mean, there should be a vast library of classic baseball and hockey material at their disposal, no?

  • #2
    I believe their contract with MLB limits the number of games they can show. They have designated nights and times for ball, like WED NIGHT doubleheaders and SUNDAY NIGHT baseball. I feel your pain. Everytime you turn to ESPN2, they often have tennis, fishing, volleyball, strongman, billiards, etc.

    The poker wouldn't be so bad if they didn't replay the same shows over and over, recapping the world series and what not. Fox and the travel channel do it right, by having new tournaments every now and then; keeps things fresh. Overall I think ESPN is still the best sports channel out there, but it would be nice to see more games, I agree. Just think they can't do it cause of contracts. At least they have an excuse. What about MTV who used to actually play music videos instead of this BS "date my mom" and "sweet 16" and "that model show or whatever" and that "laguna show" and whatever else. Gotta be watchin' at like 4 or 5 in the morning to see videos nowdays.

    Misread your title for the topic :o

    You're talking about ESPN CLASSIC?

    Right now they're showing a classic baseball game. From 1993: Philadelphia vs. Toronto, game 6 of the WS. They're interviewing Carter and Kruk in between showing the game, pretty cool.

    I usually like most of their stuff, though they could put on more games. This game right here is kind of a rarity, don't usually see this. The sportscenturies are pretty good, and the who's #1's are alright if it's something you're interested in.

    What would be cool, is if they had a website where fans could vote on the classic game they want to see. So you could vote for Game 1 of the '88 WS, or Game 7 of the 1991.
    Last edited by Sultan_1895-1948; 04-24-2006, 12:29 AM.

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    • #3
      It might just be a matter of what they have access to and what they don't. They may not have the rights to the baseball and hockey broadcasts, although I am sure it wouldn't be too hard to get them. They were the original netwrok for the bowling, poker and billiard broadcasts. They're just starting to show some of the old boxing shows they've had over the years, although of mostly recent vintage, but that's an improvement. How many times can they show Muhammad Ali fighting Jurgen Blin?
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      • #4
        Originally posted by Captain Cold Nose
        It might just be a matter of what they have access to and what they don't. They may not have the rights to the baseball and hockey broadcasts, although I am sure it wouldn't be too hard to get them.
        The other networks are strict when it comes to their programing, they don't let their games get rebroadcast without a hig price.

        The only network ESPN could cheaply get access to would be their corporate cousin, ABC. Even then it's only a limited number of games and worse yet, games that weren't really noteworthy enough to bother showing.



        Now if MLB was like the NFL and NBA they would have created their own network like NFL Films and The NFL Network to record, catelogue, and rebroadcast games and highlight videos of all of their games to allow them to be rebroadcast for a cheap price yet still retain the networks' broadcast rights...but that's not likely to happen.
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        • #5
          Esrn

          ESRN:

          Entertainment Sports Re-run Network

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          • #6
            It is bad enough you cant go three channels without seeing poker, just another one to add to the long list. Although cheap seats is a funny show, those guys are hilarious, anyone remembre a few years ago when they were trying to get Jose Okendo in the hall of fame, and they got him a plaque on the outside of the janitors closet. That was funny.

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            • #7
              Originally posted by Go Gomes
              It is bad enough you cant go three channels without seeing poker, just another one to add to the long list. Although cheap seats is a funny show, those guys are hilarious, anyone remembre a few years ago when they were trying to get Jose Okendo in the hall of fame, and they got him a plaque on the outside of the janitors closet. That was funny.
              My problem with the show is it seems like they only taped five or six episodes, which get played ad nauseum. It's very funny, though. Those two have been around, providing the voices for the conjoined twins on the animated show, The Oblongs, among other roles through the years.
              The Oquendo show was funny, and was actually quite informative.
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              • #8
                Extreme Sports and Poker Network Classic.

                I feel you, man. Bowling and billiards all the time...

                The only baseball game they show is the 93 Series, Joe Carter game... Seriously, the last five times I saw baseball on that channel was that game. I mean, it was a great game, but...

                When, Tim McCarver says "In Canada, when you say PM they think of Prime Minister, but now they might start thinking Paul Molitor" That's priceless, possbily the corniest thing McCarver has ever said, and that's some stiff comp right there...
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                • #9
                  ESPN Classic did a decent job with baseball until the 2004 ALCS. While that series was going on they dropped all their programing and just showed Yankees/Red Sox games. Their library of Yankees/Red Sox games is extremely weak, it seemed like they were showing the same five games over and over. SInce then I have only seen two baseball games on the network. The Blue Jays/Phillies game mentioned above and the Bucky Dent game.

                  When they did show baseball, it reminded me why I liked NBCs coverage and hated ABCs coverage when I was a kid.

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                  • #10
                    wamby,

                    I've been reading their schedule for a few years now, and I noticed the same thing. Right after the 2004 postseason, they dropped almost all baseball off their schedule. They even stopped showing "This Week in Baseball" reruns in early 2005 (granted, they only had about 20 episodes in their library, apparently). In October last year, they showed several 1 hour World Series highlight films, but that and the 93 WS Game 6 & Bucky Dent game are about all we get nowadays.

                    Pre-October 2004, they showed a 2 hour game about every 2 or 3 days. What happened?

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                    • #11
                      Originally posted by cloudeleven
                      wamby,

                      I've been reading their schedule for a few years now, and I noticed the same thing. Right after the 2004 postseason, they dropped almost all baseball off their schedule. They even stopped showing "This Week in Baseball" reruns in early 2005 (granted, they only had about 20 episodes in their library, apparently). In October last year, they showed several 1 hour World Series highlight films, but that and the 93 WS Game 6 & Bucky Dent game are about all we get nowadays.

                      Pre-October 2004, they showed a 2 hour game about every 2 or 3 days. What happened?
                      I don't know. I used to check their schedule every week. I've recorded about 70 games of ESPN Classic.

                      Maybe the Yankees/Red Sox thing caused a hit in their ratings.
                      Last edited by wamby; 04-26-2006, 12:06 PM.

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                      • #12
                        I would go on the theory that they probably do think poker reruns would bring in higher rating then ballgames. ESPN normally does run a little behind the times, slow to change kind of deal. To me all the ESPN networks have gotten too bogged down in their own 'custom' programming, stuff they thought up and think is good just because they made it.

                        Of course maybe they lost the rights to show that stuff? Its hard to say, but it was great to turn in and catch a classic game.

                        Anyone know if any of the dish networks have a channel that just shows old games like this? baseball, football, hockey? To me that seems like it would be an super obivious choice for a extra channel you could pay a few bucks a month extra for old games.

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                        • #13
                          Originally posted by grizzly451

                          Anyone know if any of the dish networks have a channel that just shows old games like this? baseball, football, hockey? To me that seems like it would be an super obivious choice for a extra channel you could pay a few bucks a month extra for old games.
                          It sounds like you are describing the Classic Sports Network before it was acquired by ESPN.

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                          • #14
                            Originally posted by wamby
                            It sounds like you are describing the Classic Sports Network before it was acquired by ESPN.

                            Ah, that does sound familiar, its been so long since I've even had cable I forgot. The only games I get to watch now are online.

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                            • #15
                              ESPN is the ultimate home of cliches, ignorance, nonsense, ******** on top of more nonsense.

                              Somewhere in the 1990s ESPN started loading its programming with "analysis" which is worthless drivel that is nothing but annoying, worthless ******** to anybody who cares to think about it and not just take it.

                              So ESPN has reached the point where it appeals only to its insiders, those who like the terms "web gem" and find all the little Dickie V doopey doo diaper dandy stuff even moderately amusing.

                              "Cliches are the soldiers of ignorance" -Bill James

                              Fight the ignorance. Fight ESPN.
                              http://capitalfrontiers.com

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