Grab the flaming tennis rackets and head for 30 Rock: You have a legitimate gripe against NBC and its Wimbledon coverage

UPDATED AT 12:30 p.m.:

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At this moment on NBC (10:30 a.m.), a large man in a red baseball cap and white jacket is trying to teach two overly chatty women, one whom we painfully can identify as Kathy Lee Gifford (only because of the “Saturday Night Live” skits that lampoon their stupidity) the best way to carve a hunk of cheese to look like Abraham Lincoln.

Even Matt Lauer is rolling over in his Fourth of July red, green and brown guacamole.

The peacock should be very proud of itself. It’s one of its finest shows. Ever.

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Oh, and at this moment in London, Andy Roddick is trying to fend off Andy Murray and make it into the finals at Wimbledon, to meet Roger Federer. Here’s Murray arguing a call, via AP photo. That’s all we got.

We can’t see it until it’s on, delayed, in an hour and a half. Maybe. We’re not sure which of the men’s semis they’re going to air. Although the tape-delayed feed is already going to the East Coast viewers. And ESPN2 apparently already ran the Federer match live at 5 a.m. (Fang’s Bites reveals that one linked here which we just updated). We’re now a half-hour into Roddick-Murray, but we already know the outcome…

This isn’t live? Anywhere? In today’s world? On NBCSports.com, there’s a slideshow offered of the match and explaining how it came out (we’ll even be gracious enough to not give it away if you’re interested in waiting).

NBC owns the rights for U.S. TV when it gets this deep into the most famous tennis event in the world. How does this serve the public? How does Wimbledon organizers allow such a thing? Where’s the BBC when you need it? ESPN2, which has been doing it since the first match, has its hands tied. Even with ESPN360.com.

Oh, wait, KNBC has just broken into its regular-scheduled mind-numbing post-”Today” show for a news conference where a policeman is standing outside Staples Center to explain how Tuesday’s Michael Jackson memorial service will go. Yes, it’s “live.”

Bitchin’.

Earlier this week, NBC’s gameplan to delay things during the day until people could watch them at a more convenient time — remember, this is the philosophy in carrying the Olympics — drove more sports viewers crazier than I can care to remember.

Richard Sandomir launched a column in the New York Times (linked here) that began: “If NBC Sports can’t carry Wimbledon matches live, especially crucial ones, it shouldn’t carry Wimbledon at all. The network’s tape-delay dance — and its excuses — have grown tired.”

There are others, without the same juice as the NYT, also lodging Internet complaints about the absurdity of this (linked here), but does NBC care? Does it have to?

An SI.com post this morning of its “feuds of the week” (linked here) pits “tennis fans” vs. “NBC Sports” for its Wimbledon coverage. That’s not a fair fight. We always lose.

The verdict they reached: There’s no reason that we should have to resort to finding back alley online foreign TV streams if we want to watch a match unfold. If you can’t figure out a schedule to get a maximum audience, let somebody else try.

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