This week’s weekly media column as posted on the website:
The Dodgers’ SportsNet L.A. cable channel, a 24/7 production coming out of Time Warner Cable Sports’ offices in El Segundo, has a launch set for 7 p.m. Tuesday. The two million TWC subscribers will see it. The two million DirecTV customers in the Dodgers’ territory, for now, won’t, as well as thousands more from Dish, Charter, Cox, AT&T U-verse and Verizon FiOS, unless they hammer out an agreement. What happens if when the regular season starts March 20 with the games in Australia, and there still isn’t full carriage? We’ve been down this road before, and it can get nasty.
Some photos from the studios in El Segundo, along with anchor John Hartung.
Also, there are more notes on NBC’s Winter Olympic coverage, Fox preps for the Daytona 500, and HBO goes off course for a “Real Sports” feature on children and guns that seems a bit off the mark.
What didn’t make it into the column or notes, but certainly could have:
== If we do get inspired to drag out the carcass of the annual best/worst rankings of L.A. sportscasters — it’s been a 20-year project that may not even be worthy of the kids’ menu any longer — we’ll give deep consideration to KABC-Channel 7 rookie Jimmy Kimmel.
A sub in for Rob Fukuzaki on Monday afternoon’s newscast, Kimmel may have sounded like he was warming up for his monologue, but when done right, it’s what every L.A. sportscasters should be aspiring to achieve.
His President’s Day report included in the video above:
“There are reports that former Laker, Clipper and Kardashian, Lamar Odom, is about launch a comeback. Not in the NBA, Lamar is on the verge of signing with a team in Spain. Which is good, send Lamar to Spain, Dennis Rodman to North Korea, and Dr. Drew can take a few weeks off, maybe concentrate on Justin Beiber full time.”
Next, Kimmel might consider reviving “Win Ben Stein’s Money” so he could do a stock market report.
== Prime Ticket announced it will carry 26 Angels spring training games, with some of them going onto Fox Sport West, starting with the opener on Friday, Feb. 28 vs. the Cubs at noon (FSW). Games on Monday, March 3 and Tuesday, March 4 will also simulcast nationally on Fox Sports 1, called by Victor Rojas and Mark Gubicza. For all other games, it’ll be Terry Smith on the call with Jose Mota. A new “Angels Live” with Patrick O’Neal will also air during the spring.
== One way of answering the question: If I get MLB Extra Innings, can I see the Dodgers games on SportsNet L.A. if my cable or dish company doesn’t offer it?
== The MLB Network’s spring training coverage starts Wednesday with Toronto-Philadelphia (10 a.m., live), Cincinnati-Cleveland (1 p.m., tape) and the Dodgers-Diamondbacks at 6 p.m. but blacked out in L.A. The MLB Network has more than 200 game telecasts through March 29.
== In addition to the “Kids & Guns” feature that HBO’s “Real Sports” has in its next episode (Tuesday, 10 p.m.), host Bryant Gumbel also has piece on Larry Brown, the one-time UCLA basketball coach who, at 73, has guided Southern Methodist University (21-6 in the American Conference, behind Cincinnati and Louisville and just ahead of UConn and Memphis in the standings) to a program that’s cracking the Top 25. SMU, by the way, is the 15 team he has coached — including the 2004 Olympic squad.
== NFL Network has already started coverage of the league’s combine from Indianapolis with press conferences Thursday, but the four-day livestock show kicks into gear Saturday (offensive linemen, tight ends, kickers) and Sunday (running backs, quarterbacks, receiver), before winding up Monday (linebackers, defensive linemen) and Tuesday (defensive backs). Coverage starts at 6 a.m. each day, with replays usually airing at 1 p.m., 6 p.m. and 9 p.m.. More is available at the league’s website — www.nfl.com/combine with Matt “Money” Smith part of that broadcast grouping.
== ESPN dispatches Dave Pasch, Jon Barry and Israel Guitierrez to cover the Lakers-Celtics game from Staples Center on Friday (7:30 p.m.). Mike Tirico, Hubie Brown and Lisa Salters have the Clippers game Sunday at Oklahoma City (10 a.m., Channel 7).
== Sporting News has more on Fox’s Darrell Waltrip coming into Fox’s Daytona 500 coverage minus a gallbladder, and how Fox is adjusting its graphics related to how viewers can follow the field as positions continue to change on the fly.
== If news travels slower from San Diego to L.A., maybe it’s because Lee “Hacksaw” Hamilton (not his real name) isn’t really delivering it any longer. His Twitter account implies he’s still doing the 6-to-9 a.m. shift on the Padres’ flagship AM-1090, but the station website points out otherwise — he was been replaced by Dan Sileo about three weeks ago. But hang on, that move may not be going over so well.
== The Jan. 26 B2G Sports’ West Coast Bowl, a high school all-star football game played at Redondo High and originally video streamed live, will air on Fox Sports West on Saturday at 5 p.m. Greg Wolf, Petros Papadakis and Rashaun Heylock are on the call. The game featured eventual USC signees Adoree Jackson, Olajuwon Tucker, John Plattenberg, Uchenna Nwosu and Rahshead Johnson, as well as UCLA signees Dwight Williams, Dionte Sykes, Ainuu Taua, Denzel Fisher and Jordan Lasley. Game MVP Enoch Smith eventually committed to Michigan State.
On the doc-watch radar:
= A half-hour special produced by NBC’s Olympic division called “Lokomotiv” airs Saturday during the network’s afternoon Olympic coverage. It recounts the 2011 plane crash that took 37 players from Russia’s Kontinental Hockey League Lokomotiv Yaroslavl team, including former Ducks star Ruslan Salei from Belarus, as well as four other Olympians from four different countries (Slovakia’s Pavol Demitra, Czech Republic’s Josef Vasicek, Latvia’s Karlis Skrastins and Sweden’s Stefan Liv. Salei was the Belarus captain in the Vancouver Olympics of 2010. Liev Schreiber narrates the piece.
= ESPN has a “Outside the Lines” special Sunday at 4 p.m. called “The N Word,” where host Bob Ley hosts a discussion on the use of the word, with interviewed subjects including Kareem Abdul-Jabbar, Chauncey Billups, Briana Scurry and Mean Joe Greene. ESPN Senior Vice President for SportsCenter/News and Information Rob King, who is African-American, talks about the show on an ESPN media blog.
= CBS Sports Net debuts a one-hour documentary “Court Of Change” (Sunday, 4 p.m.) on how African-American history and the sport of basketball has become a vehicle of social change. Interviewed subjects include Earl Lloyd, the first African-American NBA player; Hall of Famer Oscar Robertson, and former Harlem Globetrotters Meadowlark Lemon, Hallie Bryant and Mannie Jackson. A clip can be found here.
== A follow up on how 20 years later, the only cameraman for Intersport that caught the aftermath of the Nancy Kerrigan figure skating attack continues to benefit from the copyrighted footage.