Behind the Broadcast: NBCUniversal's total Olympic package will exceed 5,500 hours
Remember when you had to wait several hours before you could watch what happened during the Olympics? Thankfully, those days are over.
Now, you won’t miss a single thing from this summer’s Olympic games from London. NBCUniversal announced Wednesday that it will have a record 5,535 hours of coverage across NBC, NBC Sports Network, MSNBC, CNBC, Bravo, Telemundo, NBCOlympics.com, two specialty channels and the first-ever 3D platform.
That easily surpasses, by nearly 2,000 hours, the coverage NBCUniversal had four years ago from Beijing.
“We are only able to provide this level of coverage to U.S. viewers because of the unmatched array of NBCUniversal assets,” NBC Sports Group chairman Mark Lazarus said in a statement. “Whether on television or online, on broadcast or cable, in English or in Spanish,
NBCUniversal has the London Olympics covered, providing the American viewer with more choices than ever to watch the Games.”
Here’s the breakdown. It’s quite impressive.
NBC will broadcast 272.5 hours of London Olympic coverage over 17 days, the most extensive coverage ever provided by an Olympic broadcast network, and nearly 50 hours more than the 225 hours for Beijing in 2008.
Daytime coverage has increased significantly for London. Coverage will begin on most weekdays at 10 a.m., immediately following NBC News’ “Today,” which is originating from London. On weekends, NBC’s daytime coverage will begin as early as 5 a.m., so set your alarm clocks.
NBC Sports Network will serve as the home to U.S. team sports, with 292.5 hours of total coverage this summer, including 257.5 hours of original programming — an average of more than 14 hours per day — the most-ever for an Olympic cable network.
MSNBC will carry 155.5 hours of a wide variety of long-form Olympic programming over 19 days.
CNBC will serve as the home of Olympic boxing this summer, including the debut of women’s boxing. The channel will televise 73 hours of boxing coverage over 16 days — from elimination bouts to the men’s and women’s finals.
Bravo will act as the home of Olympic tennis this summer, televising 56 hours of long-form tennis coverage from July 28-Aug. 3.
NBCOlympics.com will live-stream every event and sport for the first time ever. In all, the site will live-stream more than 3,500 total programming hours, including the awarding of all 302 medals.
NBCOlympics.com will live-stream NBCU cable channels NBC Sports Network, MSNBC, CNBC and Bravo, which will only be available to authenticated cable, satellite or telco customers.
Two apps — one focused on live streaming, one on short-form highlights, schedules, results, columns and more — will be available for mobile and tablet users. The vast majority of content will only be available to authenticated cable, satellite or telco customers.
NBCUniversal announced the most extensive Spanish-language Olympic coverage in the company’s history, offering more than 173 hours of the upcoming 2012 London Olympics on Telemundo. The 173 hours of Spanish-language coverage by Telemundo nearly equals the total coverage broadcast by NBC for the 1996 Atlanta Olympics (176.5).
Specialty channels for basketball and soccer are available to cable, satellite and telco providers, and will total 770 hours of coverage.
Panasonic Corporation of North America and the NBC Sports Group announced in January that they will partner to make the London Games available in 3D to all U.S. distributors who carry Olympic coverage on cable, satellite and telco — nearly 100 percent of the multichannel industry. The effort will produce 242 hours of coverage, and mark the first time that the Olympic Games will be distributed in the U.S. in 3D.
So, if you miss anything from the Olympics, you have nobody to blame but yourself.
MSG plus horse racing
MSG Plus will televise a series of six horse races during “The New York Racing Series.” Coverage starts Monday at 5 p.m. with the Met Mile and Acorn Stakes from Belmont Park.
There will be four races from Saratoga on two days — the Diana and Jim Dandy at 5 p.m. July 28, and the Whitney and Prioress at 5 p.m. Aug. 4.
Other races on the schedule are the Mother Goose Stakes from Belmont at 5 p.m. June 23, NY Showcase Day from Belmont at 4 p.m. Oct. 20 and the Cigar Mile Day from Aqueduct at 3 p.m. Nov. 24.
MSG Plus will also have live coverage of the Belmont Stakes Draw at 11 a.m. June 6, and a Belmont Stakes preview at 7:30 p.m. June 8.
Holiday weekend parting shots
With it being Memorial Day weekend, here are some suggestions for you to watch on TV, or listen on the radio, over the three-day weekend.
ABC10 and ABC10 HD have the Indianapolis 500 Sunday. Pre-race coverage starts at 11 p.m., with the race scheduled to start at noon.
FOX23 and FOX23 HD have the NASCAR Coca-Cola 600 at 5 p.m. Sunday.
ABC10 and ABC10 have Game 7 of the NBA playoffs Eastern Conference semifinals between the Philadelphia 76ers and Boston Celtics tonight at 8. It will also be on the radio on ESPN Radio 104.5 The Team (WTMM).
TNT and TNT HD have Game 1 of the NBA Western Conference finals between the Oklahoma City Thunder and San Antonio Spurs at 8:30 p.m. Sunday. This game will also be on WTMM.
The French Open begins Sunday. ESPN2 and ESPN2 HD start the coverage at 5 a.m. The Tennis Channel and Tennis Channel HD start their telecasts at 10 a.m. NBC13 and NBC13 HD get their broadcast started at noon.
NBC13 and NBC13 HD have the final two rounds of the Senior PGA Championship 3 p.m. today and Sunday.
ESPN2 and ESPN2 HD televise the NCAA men’s lacrosse tourn-ament semifinals today. Game 1 pits Duke against Maryland at 2:30 p.m. Loyola takes on Notre Dame at 5. ESPN and ESPN HD televise the championship game at 1 p.m. Monday.