Go back to that tragedy (in the words of Red Sox Nation) on Saturday night, when TBS blew a major fuse and wasn’t able to bring the first 20 minutes of the ALCS Game 6 from Tampa.
“Two circuit breakers in our Atlanta transmission operations tripped, causing the master router and its backup — which are necessary to transmit any incoming feed outbound — to shut down,” Turner Sports explained in a statement Saturday night. “This impacted our live feed from being distributed to any of the other networks in the Turner portfolio and caused the delay in our coverage.”
Tell that to the folks crammed into the Cask N Flagon behind the Green Monster of Fenway Park.
“People were in a little uproar because they thought we didn’t put the game on. They were just screaming at us to put it on and try all the other stations — Fox, TNT,” said restaurant manager Mike Fusco said. The bar didn’t even have a radio to pipe in over the PA system — that’s not good — so everyone had to watch “The Steve Harvey” re-run until power was restored.
For Fox’s coverage of the World Series starting tonight, executive producer Ed Goren says he believes his network was ahead of the curve, and it goes back to the ’94 Northridge earthquake.
“We buy an insurance policy with a facility in Houston, so that if something happens in L.A. with the main transmition, we can switch to Houston and get coverage within minutes,” said Goren. “Yes, it’s something you worry about and, yes, it can be a nightmare, and five minutes off the air can feel like a lifetime, but it’s happened to others before and hopefully it doesn’t happen to us.
“I think our situation is pretty unique. The Houston facility is the central location for all the (FSN) cable channels, so not all our money is in one place. I do remember from Day 1, in 1994, being based in L.A., at some point (Fox Sports chief David) Hill pointed out to me that, ‘If we had the Northridge earthquake, what happens to our football (coverage)?’ So we had that conversation way back when we began as a sports network in 1994.”
The problem CBS had last Sunday with a power outage in Buffalo that delayed coverage of the Chargers-Bills wasn’t the network’s fault. But networks do carry backup generators to events like a World Series in case of that kind of problem — just look at the 1989 San Francisco earthquake that knocked out power on ABC’s coverage before the generator kicked in.