Philippines, Sports, television

In 150 Words: ABS-CBN Hooks Up with URCC

The URCC joins forces with ABS-CBN Sports to broadcast and promote their events. From left: Dino Laurena (head of Integrated Sports, ABS-CBN), Alvin Aguilar (founder/owner, URCC), and March Ventosa (ABS-CBN Narrowcast head). (Photo credit: ABS-CBN)

The URCC is now on ABS-CBN Sports.

On Friday, April 1, a broadcast deal was reached between the Universal Reality Combat Championship and ABS-CBN, enabling the latter (through ABS-CBN Sports+Action in SD and HD) to air URCC events. The first URCC fight card on ABS-CBN Sports will be URCC 27: Rebellion on April 23.

The addition of the URCC to the ABS-CBN Sports family should aid in the former’s efforts to further promote their brand of mixed martial arts in the country. More importantly, it should help Kapamilya viewers move on from the loss of the UFC, which moved to Sports5 at the start of this year.

The URCC is founded and owned by Alvin Aguilar, and is considered the biggest MMA promotion in Southeast Asia.

entertainment, Philippines, Sports, television

Thoughts on the New NBA TV Contract with Solar/ABS-CBN

A new television contract between the NBA, Solar Entertainment and ABS-CBN should bring in more games to the viewing public. (Photo credit: ABS-CBN

New contract, new hope, and new expectations.

This is exactly what happened when the NBA, Solar Entertainment and ABS-CBN signed a new television contract last Friday. The contract signing, held at the NBA Cafe at Taguig’s SM Aura, featured NBA legend Darryl Dawkins, along with NBA Asia Managing Director Scott Levy, Solar Entertainment President and CEO Wilson Tieng, and ABS-CBN Narrowcast head March Ventosa.

Under the terms of the new deal, Solar Entertainment (through Basketball TV and NBA Premium) and ABS-CBN Sports (through ABS-CBN Channel 2 and ABS-CBN Sports+Action) will air around 30 NBA games per week throughout the regular season. In addition, highlights and special programs like ‘NBA Action’ will continue to air on each channel.

While the new contract deals seem enticing enough for NBA fans, there are still some old problems to face with regards to the game broadcasts.

One is the ongoing issue regarding tape-delay broadcasts. These scenarios will remain prevalent throughout the season, either due to programming constraints, broadcast limits, or game scheduling conflicts, and as such, are unavoidable.

Two is the questionable selection of games. The NBA always has the authority to select the games for its international partners, but for some reason, fans have continued to balk on some of their selections, especially when a game between either one or two rebuilding teams is picked over a more compelling matchup involving big-name teams and players.

And third is the game presentation. While NBA Premium will continue to air games uninterrupted and without the aid of local advertising, the same cannot be said for Basketball TV and ABS-CBN Sports. As such, expect the latter two channels to continue their rabid placement of advertisements in every game, quarter to quarter and highlight to highlight, even if it takes cutting the broadcast short just for these.

So heading into the new season, the same old problems will once again await both Solar and ABS-CBN. Still, expect more of the same intense action that the NBA has always offered, from the regular season all the way to the championship.

Notes: In addition to Basketball TV, NBA Premium and ABS-CBN Sports, Fox Sports Philippines will also broadcast a select number of NBA games this season. They even went as far as picking the games themselves, contrary to the NBA policy of selecting its games for its international partners.