action, Philippines, Sports, television, United States

WWE Out of ABS-CBN Sports?

The Daniel Bryan vs. the Authority angle will not be seen on free TV’s ABS-CBN Sports + Action for now.

Looks like the ‘Road to WrestleMania’ ended way too soon for ABS-CBN Sports.

In an unexpected development, WWE programming was pulled out of the ABS-CBN Sports + Action channel at the beginning of March, and were replaced by either the Ultimate Fighting Championship, UEFA Champions League, Pinoy Pride and Top Rank Boxing, or the NBA. The pullout of WWE programs by ABS-CBN Sports comes in three years after Solar Entertainment’s Jack TV decided to cease airing all WWE programs.

As expected, some wrestling fans were angered by ABS-CBN’s decision to cancel its broadcast of the WWE. However, the reaction only paled in comparison to Solar’s pullout three years earlier, where an overwhelming majority of wrestling fans balked at the one-hour international format of Raw, the absence of SmackDown and Main Event (both currently airing on FOX Philippines), and the delayed broadcast of WWE pay-per-views on the Kapamilya’s UHF channel.

The absence of WWE programming on ABS-CBN Sports may have stemmed from the fact that the Vince McMahon-owned company recently established the WWE Network after the Elimination Chamber pay-per-view. As many wrestling fans know, the new network is expected to carry every WWE pay-per-view beginning with WrestleMania 30 in New Orleans. Because of that, ABS-CBN Sports may find it difficult to even broadcast the upcoming WrestleMania 30 in both SkyCable and Sports + Action, considering the already complicated situation.

Should ABS-CBN Sports officially close the door on the WWE, Fox needs to step up. While the channel already has SmackDown and Main Event along with other supplementary programs like Vintage, Afterburn and Bottomline, what Fox needs at this point are both Raw and the pay-per-views in order to satisfy the demands of loyal wrestling viewers. If that happens, perhaps a return to a two or three-hour format for Raw and free live pay-per-views is in order, provided that Fox airs WWE programs on the same week as the U.S.

The loss of WWE should not be a big deal for Kapamilya viewers. After all, there is the Ultimate Fighting Championship, another form of combat sports which is just as entertaining, but without the scripted excess that is featured in professional wrestling. However, it remains to be seen whether or not free TV will once again accept the WWE.

Advertisements
Standard
Philippines, Sports, television, United States

A Viewer’s Guide to the 2014 NBA All-Star Weekend

 

This year’ NBA All-Star Weekend in the Philippines will again be shared by both ABS-CBN and Solar’s Basketball TV.

On February 15-17 (Manila time), the NBA will once again stage its annual All-Star Weekend. And at the midseason classic in New Orleans, hundreds of media outlets around the world, including the Philippines, will be on hand to cover the proceedings.

Here’s is a viewer’s guide on how to watch the NBA All-Star Weekend in the Philippines.

ABS-CBN, Solar Will Use Separate Feeds

ABS-CBN will send Boom Gonzales and TJ Manotoc to cover the All-Star Game. Like last year, the duo will also be on hand to call the All-Star Saturday events. As a result of Boom’s assignment to the All-Star Game, the UAAP women’s volleyball play-by-play for the rest of the eliminations will be handled by Anton Roxas and Eric Tipan. The Rising Stars Challenge on ABS-CBN will likely use TNT’s broadcasters.

Basketball TV and NBA Premium will use the TNT play-by-play for all three events. In addition, BTV will send Riki Flores to do player interviews and document other All-Star events such as Jam Session. Riki’s All-Star coverage will be used on the short segments ‘The Grind’, ‘One on One’, and ’24 Seconds’.

Both networks will be using the NBA TV International feed for all three events.

All-Star Saturday and All-Star Game on Sports + Action

Unfortunately, ABS-CBN Channel 2 will only broadcast the Rising Stars Challenge. The rest of the All-Star events will be handled by sister network ABS-CBN Sports + Action on Channel 23, as the broadcast of these events will be in conflict with ABS-CBN programs such as ‘Matanglawin’, ‘Kapamilya: Minute to Win It’ (last two weeks), and ‘Be Careful with My Heart’.

Expanded Coverage on Basketball TV and NBA Premium

And finally, from February 15-17, most, if not all programs on Basketball TV and NBA Premium will be related to All-Star Weekend. This includes Jam Session, the All-Star Celebrity Game, the NBA D-League’s own All-Star Weekend, Commissioner Adam Silver’s press conferences, pre-event and post-event coverage of the Rising Stars, All-Star Saturday and All-Star Game, and the player practices for the All-Star Game. The NBA TV feed will be used for most of the programs.

With that, I expect both networks to give their best in broadcasting the annual NBA All-Star Weekend. The showcase is a fun and exciting event that basketball fans will surely not miss. After all, it is an ‘All-Star Weekend’, where the league’s best players converge in one roof.

Standard