The TV repairman:
The LPGA Championship, currently raging at the Bethesda Country Club, gets wall-to-wall coverage the next two days, NBC coming on each day at 1 p.m. and sticking around until the early local news. Johnny Miller's commentary is a diamond in the Peacock's rough and detached links coverage.
Actually, even the most devout linksman will be getting his fill this weekend as the PGA Tour shows up on CBS at 4 p.m. tomorrow and 3:30 Sunday while the Seniors Tour is hanging out on ESPN at 5:30 p.m. both days. That's about 18 hours of what look like picture swings, so if your game doesn't improve by simple absorption, purchase a tennis racket.
Speaking of which, the fact there wasn't much interesting tennis to watch from Wimbledon on HBO earlier in the week due to rain gets rectified over the next several days when the cable and NBC go C-Span. The network shows go at 2:30 p.m. tomorrow and 3 Sunday (all tape because striking the Slazenger on the sabbath is frowned upon at Wimbledon).
Besides it's 5 p.m. daily package, HBO will do three-hour shows next Monday and Wednesday at 10 a.m., then on July 4 and 5, it will alternate with shows at 1 and 5 p.m. and 12:45 a.m. And, believe it or not, we won't even be to the finals yet. Take the number of words expended by the American broadcasters and divide it by 1 billion and you have the number of words used by the Brit commentators on the "Beeb."
Ross Greenburg, HBO's Wimby producer, gives an excellent and truthful answer to the years-old question why it doesn't do the tournament live: "If we came on live every morning at 9 a.m., no one would be watching. Our subscribers pay to watch HBO and you're doing them a disservice if you're on when they're at work and not there when they're ready to watch. Besides, a taped package makes for a better show." Here-here.
* Here Mike Tyson and Razor Ruddock are finally finishing up their fight started back in March this evening (pay per view, 10 p.m.) and most of the stories out of Las Vegas this week have dealt with the endless bickering between the Tyson and Evander Holyfield camps concerning their meeting sometime in the late fall.
Ruddock assures all those investing $35 in the PPV that he's going to use both hands this time, he's in better condition than last time (at 238 pounds?) and the froth and frenzy accompanying all Tyson fights won't bewilder him this time. Tyson says, "Oh yeah!"
Heavyweights are a scream. One, Levi Billups, got on a USA Network fight against Michael Moorer Tuesday night and bellowed long and loudly about how tough he is, etc. Moorer, who last fought at 175 pounds, put on 40 and starched his bigger foe inside three rounds. Then, four times in a two-minute interview, Michael told the truth and said it shouldn't have been stopped. Billups, the tough guy, disagreed.
* Hey, really, if you don't get enough of Jon Miller broadcasting games on the radio, just give the Oriole offices a call and listen to Jon traffic cop the incoming calls: "Press one now."
* It turns out that CBS didn't lose the tape of the NCAA track championships shot the first weekend of June and it will show same Sunday at 2:30 p.m. (Channel 11).
* Wanna see an example of lousy fight judging or, in the case of the site involved, a typical Las Vegas decision? ESPN will run a tape of the Sugar Ray Leonard-Thomas Hearns fight in 1989 tomorrow (3 p.m.). This is the one where Hearns floors Leonard twice, but Leonard steals a draw with an impressive last 90 seconds.
* Paula Zahn, who will co-host next year's Winter Olympics for CBS with Tim McCarver, was in Colorado Springs recently and decided to take a workout with speed skaters Bonnie Blair and Dan Jansen. They took off running up and down and traversing ski slopes and gold medalist Blair was amazed the TV personality could keep up. Fact is, Paula runs a hundred miles per week.
* With so many baseball games on nightly on commercial and cable, Channel 20 realizes fans remote control back and forth so it uses a terrific update graphic showing you the outs the count and the location of the baserunners. Go ye and do likewise, Channel 2.
* Home Team Sports has the Canadian Football League exhibition between Winnipeg and Toronto from Wednesday night on at 9:30 a.m. Sunday. Unfortunately, the reason for the pickup, Rocket Ismail, the Notre Dame star of last fall, was out with a bum leg.
* Jim Palmer would do us all a favor if, after a pitcher has been shelled to cover, he wouldn't constantly alibi, "He wasn't making quality pitches." And go easy on that "location" and "velocity" talk, too.
* What is it with millionaire tennis players John McEnroe and Mats Wilander wanting passionately to play guitar of run-of-the-mill rock bands. Sounds like an HBO or NBC feature to me.
* ABC's "Wide World of Sports" tomorrow (4:30 p.m.) has the Hollywood Gold Cup horse race and a middleweight scrap between James Toney (26-0) and Reggie Johnson (29-1). Toney's the lad who starched Michael Nunn a while back, so he's worth a look.