Tuesday, November 2, 2010

How Sportsnet One succeeded last night

There were three sporting events that Rogers Sportsnet had the exclusive Canadian rights to that would interest viewers in the Pacific timezone last night: the clinching World Series game, the Canucks game, and the Toronto Raptors/Sacramento Kings tilt.

Spare the endless bickering about how baseball is not a sport and all; it belongs on national television, and Sportsnet, rather than cut it off completely as they did to the Yankees/Rangers Game 1 of the ALCS, shunted the Canucks game to the Sportsnet One companion channel Sportsnet: Vancouver Hockey to let us watch a Joe Buck-less call of the Giants World Series win. Since that game overlapped with the beginning of the Raptors game, forecast for Sportsnet One, Rogers used the national channel to show Canada's only NBA team blow a lead and then pass on two potential tying three-point attempts late.

It was an awe-inspiring, amazing, ridiculous success: Sportsnet successfully juggled three events and spread them out on their three cable channels to ensure that everybody like me (SHAW customers with HD-Plus in the BC-region) could watch or record three major sporting events.

This is the first of probably one time I will give Rogers credit for something like this, and here is why: does anybody even watch Sportsnet One otherwise?

Sportsnet One is like an amalgamation of TSN2 and the Big-10 Network, if TSN2 showed nothing but repeats of American shows, darts and poker and the B10N showed something other than Illinois and Indiana Universities. If you tune into Sportsnet One, your odds of watching quality programming, original programming or simply a live-sporting event are pretty well nil. The cancellation of Versus' The Daily Line means that the Sportsnet One national channel will lose eight hours of their 24-hour programming clock.

The whole concept is foreign: at some point this year, there will be a Canucks game on Sportsnet: Vancouver Hockey or an Oilers games on Sportsnet: Edmonton Hockey with nothing on Rogers' respective Pacific or West channels, and that will be sad.

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