Weekly media column version 05.09.14 — Anson Carter’s dreadlocks may be gone, but his TV career has locked on NBC’s NHL coverage

Anson Carter  sails across the net in front of Calgary Flames goalie Mikka Kiprusoff and Flames' Denis Gauthier during a March, 2004 Kings game in Calgary.  (AP Photo/Jeff McIntosh)

Anson Carter sails across the net in front of Calgary Flames goalie Mikka Kiprusoff and Flames’ Denis Gauthier during a March, 2004 Kings game in Calgary. (AP Photo/Jeff McIntosh)

What made it into the online version posted this evening:

vstyrtto Anson Carter’s 15 games of not-much fame with the Kings came 10 years ago, as the team picked up the veteran right winger at the trade deadline to help with its push toward a post-season spot.
Not only did the Kings come up short — they ended the season on an 11-game losing streak — but Carter had just one assist total during his stint, slowed by a bad shoulder and sports hernia. He was gone the next year — to score 33 goals on the Sedin brothers line in Vancouver.
But L.A., or more specifically Marina del Rey, where he kept an off-season home, never left him.
As an NBC Sports Net studio analyst on the NHL during these playoffs, particularly visible trading opinions with Jeremy Roenick during intermission breaks in the Kings-Ducks Western Conference semifinal series, Carter’s experience from an 11-year NHL career (1996-2007) has given him more confidence to approach a burgeoning TV career.
Carter, the booth analyst with Dave Strader (above) during the Kings-Ducks outdoor game at Dodger Stadium last January, talks to us about that and his continued work in the entertainment business in this week’s feature. Also, we have more on ESPN’s coverage of the WBC heavyweight championship fight from USC’s Galen Center on Saturday, DirecTV’s latest blast on the Dodgers’ SportsNet L.A. negotiations, and wondering if L.A. will get up early enough Sunday to follow the final day of the Premiere League 10-channel coverage.

What didn’t quite make it but is worth posting here:

== Trivia question: Who scored the first NHL goal in Staples Center history? Anson Carter, on Oct. 20, 1999, as a member of the Boston Bruins. The game against the Kings ended in a 2-2 tie.

== Carter returns to the NHL studio show in Sunday after working on the NBCSN coverage of the IIHF World Championships this weekend. U.S. takes on Belarus on Saturday (10:30 a.m.) and Switzerland on Sunday (10:30 a.m.).

== Our apologies if you’ve already seen this L.A. Weekly post on the TWC SportsNet L.A. distribution. Spin it any which way you want.

== Fox Sports 1 has Joe Buck and Tom Verducci (without Harold Reynolds) calling the Dodgers-Giants game from Dodgers Stadium on Saturday (1 p.m.) going head to head with Vin Scully’s description on SportsNet L.A., which will include the Dodgers’ Old-Timers game afterward.
The second game of the FS1 doubleheader has Justin Kutcher and Brian Anderson calling Cleveland-Tampa Bay (4 p.m.)

== And the point of this latest handwringing is … there aren’t any new pseudo protests planned at a local bar anymore?

9781618931108== The newly-released Sports Illustrated book, “Any Given Number: Who Wore It Best, from 00 to 99” may inspire us to revise the project we tackled back in 2007 when he tried to compile the all-time number roster of Southern California, from 00 (Benoit Benjamin, before Brian Wilson arrived) to 99 (Wayne Gretzky, before Manny Ramirez arrived). The key question remains that we still haven’t answered: What number did Jackie Robinson wear when he played baseball at UCLA? And why has UCLA basketball retired Don Barksdale’s No. 11, but not Don MacLean’s No. 42 (as it has already been retired for Walt Hazzard)?

== Not sure why this wasn’t thought of sooner than now: Fox Sports 1 will debut a new show called “Back Of The Shop,” where athletes will gather at the Jordan Sport Barbershop in the Bronx and just talk about stuff. First episode is Saturday, May 24; it moves to a regular slot of Tuesdays at 5:30 p.m.

headshot== The WNBA Sparks decided on Jim Watson (right), Jarron Collins and Mary Murphy as their new broadcast team, replacing Larry Burnett and Tracey Warren, on a 25-game schedule for TWC SportsNet. Kelli Tennant returns as a courtside reporter. Southern California-based Watson, who recently did the Paraympics for NBCSN, and has been a regular on the Pac-12 Network after a long run on FSW/Prime Ticket. Collins, the 11-year NBA veteran out of Harvard-Westlake and the twin brother of current Brooklyn Nets center Jason Collins, will do all Sparks home games with Watson. Murphy, a long-time women’s basketball TV analyst, will partner with Watson on road games. The first TWC SportsNet telecast is the Sparks’ season opener at Seattle on Friday, May 16 at 7 p.m., followed by the home opener on Sunday, May 18.

== On the list of the top U.S. markets who had the highest combined rating on NBC and NBCSN for Premiere League matches this season, Los Angeles ranked a middle-of-the-road No. 25. Blame it on the early live starts? Perhaps, but Seattle was No. 5 and San Francisco/Oakland was No. 7, behind No. 1 Washington D.C. Further research shows that L.A. ranked No. 13 (behind No. 1 Seattle) if you take only the Premiere League games that were on NBC with generally the 9:30 a.m. starts for KNBC-Channel 4. This comes into play as Manchester City tries to clinch its second Premiere League title in three years when it takes on West Ham in the 7 a.m. window on “Championship Sunday” that Channel 4 will have while NBC’s family of channels has all 10 games of the season’s final day simultaneously. The rest of the schedule: Liverpool-Newcastle (NBCSN), Cardiff-Chelsea (CNBC), Norwich-Arsenal (MSNBC), Hull-Everton (Bravo), Tottenham-Aston Villa (USA Network), Southampton-Manchester United (Syfy), Sunderland-Swansea (Esquire Network), Fulham-Crystal Palace (E!) and West Bromwich Albion-Stoke (Oxygen). A post-game wrapup airs on Channel 4 at 9 a.m. NBC says more than 30.5 million American homes have found the networks’ coverage of the Premier League in 2013-14 – more than double the 13.3 million who found it on ESPN, ESPN2 and Fox Soccer channel a year ago. Meanwhile, John Strong and Brian Dunseth call Sunday’s Galaxy-Timbers MLS game from Portland at 11:30 a.m. for NBCSN, right after the network’s Premiere League wrapup show.

== ESPN starts a six episode series  called “Inside: U.S. Soccer’s March to Brazil” that followed the American team inside training camp. ESPN Films produces the series that launches at 4 p.m. Tuesday and ends with a live installment on June 11 at 6:30 p.m.

== What’s behind NBC “poaching” another one of ESPN’s execs (the third in the last six months, including Josh Elliott)?

== Another angle to the media’s coverage of the Donald Sterling story that we endorse, thanks to ShermanReport.com spotting this by Phil Mushnick of the New York Post.

Amgen-Tour-of-California-1383682452== Phil Liggett and Paul Sherwen return for NBCSN’s coverage of the Amgen Tour of California starts with Sunday’s first stage in Sacramento at 2 p.m. Christian Vande Velde, Steve Schlanger and Steve Porino also report. The event wraps up in Thousand Oaks on Sunday, May 18, carried on Channel 4.

== The NBC-Olympic right deal through 2032 made the front page of the New York Times on Thursday. This story about how blimps have become a vital part of TV golf coverage at l;east made it on the NYT sports cover earlier in the week.

== And what direction is journalism heading? Survey says: Closer to this end of the blog than the top part.

Facebook Twitter Plusone Digg Reddit Stumbleupon Tumblr Email