Posted on: July 3, 2009 11:29 am

Great Wimbledon - Terrible Coverage

Has anyone else been watching this awful coverage of Week 2 of Wimbledon? Let me start off by saying that I absolutely hate not seeing a match live. Especially since during Week 1 ESPN2 did a great job and showed every match live that they possibly could. They started up at 7AM and finished up at something like 6PM, even re-showing some of the early matches for those who weren't awake. Then starting last Saturday, NBC came in and screwed everything up.

As I write this, I am forced to listen to the Murray v. Roddick semifinal on Wimbledon Radio because it's not on TV anywhere. The same thing happened with the Venus v. Safina match yesterday. Same with the quarterfinal matches. So this is what is happening here. ESPN buys the rights to cover a certain time period, and NBC buys the rights to a certain match. NBC can't cover the Murray v. Roddick match until noon today (its 11:22 AM) which is already into the second set. Since the Federer match only took 3 sets, ESPN is stuck showing last year's final set of the championship because NBC has the rights to the Murray v. Roddick match. Over the weekend, ESPN had full-day coverage and commented on the fact that they couldn't even give you score updates of the Roddick match because NBC had the rights to it.

Granted, tennis scheduling is tough to program because matches aren't based on time and the following match will start immediately following the first. Even still, they have to figure out a system to show these matches live. By the time the match is shown on NBC today, the second set will most likely be over, and the only reason I'd want to watch it is to actually see what i'm hearing on Wimbledon Radio. My reason for saying that NBC is ruining the coverage is because ESPN2 did such a great job over the first week.

All I'm asking is to see a quarterfinal and semifinal match live. For a Grand Slam that shouldn't be too much to ask, should it?

Posted on: June 2, 2009 12:22 am
Edited on: June 2, 2009 3:26 pm

Federer - Still Got It?

Today at the French Open was pretty interesting. It is evident that the players are feeling the round of 16 and are stepping up their game accordingly. The match that stood out to me was the Federer/Haas match today, which found the number 2 ranked player in the world down 2 sets to 0 and down 4-3 in the third set. I don't see why people think that Federer is a done deal. This guy has shown countless times that he has what it takes to be the best and today this proves it once more.

In the same type of scenario yesterday, Rafael Nadal folded under the pressure of trailing 2-1 and lost his match. Next day what does Federer do? He comes back to win the match in 5 sets after being 2 games away from losing the match. See, this is the stuff champions are made of. It's not about how you deal with the pressures of winning, its how you deal with the adversity of being almost down and out, and how you can come back from that. It's simply great stuff to watch, and if you are a tennis fan and aren't spending each day from 12-6 in front of ESPN2 at the very least, then you are certainly missing out.

Federer is the clear favorite to win on the men's side, but I'm going to be interested to see how he deals with Gael Monfils, who absolutely obliterated Roddick today in straight sets. Speaking of that match, can I tell you how annoyed I am at the favoritism of the American players by the ESPN announcing crew? Let's be honest about that match. Everything pointed to Monfils taking that match. I didn't think he'd take it straight, but I did think he would take it, as did a few of the announcers, and here we have Brad Gilbert giving the "match advantages." He gave Monfils checks for Backhand, Forehand, and he said 9 checks for speed, and gave Roddick the check for serve, and for intangibles. Let's look at the intangibles. Gael Monfils is French. They are playing on clay (Monfils is 2-0 vs. Roddick on clay). The entire crowd was chanting his name as he walked out for goodness sakes. But nope, Brad Gilbert "just has a feeling about this one" and once again proves himself wrong for picking with his nation over his brain. Yes, Roddick has been playing better, but for goodness sakes he is at the French Open and has watched Monfils play! I don't really get it.

On the women's side, Safina is absolutely crushing her way into the quarterfinals. She has played 5 matches and has only dropped 5 games. Not 5 sets, 5 games. She is just running away with this thing. I'm really excited for this weekend to see how the final matches end up.

If you're not watching this, you really are missing out. Check it out, I promise you won't be disappointed.

The views expressed in this blog are solely those of the author and do not reflect the views of CBS Sports or CBSSports.com