I haven’t watched a PBA telecast once this season and today I dialed in to ESPN for the encore presentation of the Motor City Open from the Detroit, Michigan area.
This was an awesome telecast to replay. The final match came down to the final frame between Walter Ray Williams and Chris Barnes.
What else I have noticed is that they’re still pitching the Hambone call and now they have mics on the players and there were a lot more commercials and personal interest bits than I remember watching.
Commercials and Tidbits:
I tuned in during the O’Neill / Barnes match and there were a ton of commercials hitting us up. I found myself distracted by the number of commercials and started channel hopping to football games.
When I came back, they were hitting up personal tidbits in between frames. Again, I felt myself being distracted. But I also get it. They need to do something to ramp up the attention span of the attending television / cable viewers.
Is it me, or are the commercials … just lame?
I see I’m not alone. When the announcer called out hambone on Walter Ray Williams, he then quietly said something to the effect that “Oh, he doesn’t like that term.” LOL.
Old-school bowlers know that hambone really is. It’s an award handed out by the United States Bowling Congress to junior bowlers who throw 2 strikes in a row. Yea… good move Rob Stone. Not knowing we call 4-in-a-row a 4-bagger, he pulled this term out of his… hat. Eh, can you really blame a soccer commentator for not knowing?
FYI: I just had the “Urban Dictionary” lose any credibility with me… they give the term the same definition that Stone uses. Boo.
Microphones on Bowlers:
I find it an interesting angle to be able to have the announcer ask the players questions and have immediate feedback. That’s a very interesting new wrinkle to the coverage.
As a PBA member myself, I’m not sure I’d be the best candidate to wear a mic if I ever got to a televised final. I mean, I’m the guy that got 4 language fouls in a row in one regional!!! (From my early days.)
From an inside perspective I don’t agree with being asked to air your thoughts in the middle of a match when you really need to stay in your zone.
Afterward though, I thought it was awesome to hear Chris Barnes chatting up his thoughts going into the match against Walter Ray!
All For Better Ratings:
I know that ESPN is trying to crank up their viewership with all these different tricks. And in any other scenario, these add-ons would probably work.
But when you air your telecasts up against the NFL on Fox and CBS, some of the highest rated television in any week, you are fighting a losing battle. Even later on in the year / season they’re then up against NASCAR.
ESPN needs to re-air the PBA telecasts at a quieter point in the day or week to see how the telecast fairs when they’re not up against the ratings power-house of football. (I’m up for a correction if anyone has indeed seen any re-broadcast of the tournaments.)
But to move the live telecasts to another day would be murder to the fans that to attend the sport. Fans have the time during the weekend to attend PBA events. There really isn’t a great time for bowling. But dang… I think they need to do something.
That’s why I think rebroadcasts might work. Might.
But hey, I’m no expert here.
Next Live Tournament
The next live tournament will be the Earl Anthony Memorial Classic at Earl Anthony’s Dublin Bowl. They’re in my neck of the woods. Hmm, maybe I’ll enter the game and have some fun! LOL.
I haven’t bowled since mid-2007. On May 4th, 2007 I tossed the first PBA Sports Shot Condition 300 in the Bay Area (Or so they told me). But shortly after, I pulled a muscle in my arm, that later never really healed, so I backed off of bowling for a while.
Maybe I’ll head out and see what things look like and toss my name in the hat. (Probably not, but what the heck. Ya never know! I have taken up running so my legs won’t be the issue!)
See ya’ll at the next tournament? At least on TV!