The USA Network Says Goodbye To The U.S. Open

Friday, September 05, 2008

The USA Network has carried the opening rounds of the U.S. Open for 25 years and has always done an amazing job with the tournament. For one reason or another, the network has decided to focus all attention and resources on its "Characters Welcome" campaign (and will give you more episodes of Law & Order you can handle!) and won't be renewing its TV contract with USTA next year....

The network is giving up sports to focus on its character-driven programming. ESPN and the Tennis Channel will televise from Flushing Meadows for at least the next five years.

For two weeks, USA has been reminiscing over its 25-year history of covering the tournament, replaying moments like the Barbra Streisand “Zen” interview.

The cable change probably won’t make too big a difference to tennis fans — McEnroe & company hop from network to network — but it will be strange without relentless commercials for programs like “The Starter Wife.” (In 1995, the network did so many promos for a made-for-TV thriller called “The Colony,” I broke down and watched it. Let’s just say it was best shown in 60-second snippets.)
Over the years USA has been purging themselves of Sports like the Masters, and after this move they're only left with just the Westminster Kennel Club Dog Show and RAW (not really Sports, but you get what I'm saying). I understand that $140 Million dollars is a lot of money, and I'm personally not breaking any doors down to watch Burn Notice or Monk, but maybe someone is. I've watched the U.S. Open on the network since I was a kid, so it's definitely sad to see it go to another network, but at least McEnroe and Co. are staying on board.

With that said, I've always been a fan of season ending or year ending montages and this 25-year one ranks up there with the best of them. Especially when you set it to a cover of Steely Dan's "Reelin' In The Years"....

Closing Time for USA Network (NY Times)

Posted by Awful Announcing- at 3:11 PM



GMoney said...
Sep 5, 2008, 4:08:00 PM  

No love for the USA Cartoon Express?

Anonymous said...
Sep 5, 2008, 4:19:00 PM  

Dude, that montage sucked. I was watching it and they did a great job with the different announcers saying their goodbyes. Then they get to the big finish...and that's the montage? Lame, lame, lame. Needed more classic moments and less of this year's action.

They had golden montage potential and blew it. I will miss USA though covering the Open since they did it in such an anti-ESPN way. The tennis was the whole show.

Sean O said...
Sep 5, 2008, 4:22:00 PM  

Nothing is better then those 1st week 2 AM ET finishes with Roddick, Blake, Agassi, Sampras, etc. Sad.

I have a feeling ESPN will have great coverage of the event next year. I am not kidding either.

As a tennis fan ESPN does a pretty good job on their coverage. The only thing that interferes with their coverage are those big networks like NBC and CBS.

Very cool farewell video too.

Brett said...
Sep 5, 2008, 4:48:00 PM  

Actually, you should be breaking down doors to watch Burn Notice. It's one of the most entertaining shows on TV.

Just what we don't need, the 4 Letter increasing it's monopoly on sports. We need less ESPN in out lives, not more.

Big Al said...
Sep 5, 2008, 5:45:00 PM  


Mike said...
Sep 5, 2008, 5:48:00 PM  

any chance they can bring back dance party usa?


-dan said...
Sep 5, 2008, 5:56:00 PM  

Monday Night RAW!

Anonymous said...
Sep 5, 2008, 6:13:00 PM  

Re: USA Cartoon Express

There's no way in Hell Keith Olbermann was the narrator.
Of course, Wikipedia is never wrong...

Anonymous said...
Sep 5, 2008, 6:35:00 PM  

No love for Night Flight with Lisa Robinson?

Anonymous said...
Sep 5, 2008, 8:39:00 PM  

Ted Robinson and John McEnroe will probably work for the Tennis Channel during the French Open they worked for the Tennis Channel. Too bad, because I don't have it.

Patrick said...
Sep 5, 2008, 10:57:00 PM  

Burn Notice is good.

Anonymous said...
Sep 6, 2008, 12:56:00 AM  

USA Up All Night was the shit, with Gilbert Gottfried and....that chick I can no longer remember.

Anonymous said...
Sep 6, 2008, 12:59:00 AM  

Agree with sean'o ... that montage was pathetic and seemed rushed (especially for the last half where it was nothing but this year's stuff) ... this had huge potential with all of those classic matches ... how andre agassi isn't in that montage at all just blows my mind

Luke said...
Sep 6, 2008, 1:08:00 AM  

NBC Universal has screwed up USA and other cable channels they own.

Anonymous said...
Sep 6, 2008, 3:34:00 AM  

Burn notice is one of the best shows on television, and In Plain Sight isn't bad either. Plus both the main women on the shows are decent eye candy for summertime programming.

Anonymous said...
Sep 6, 2008, 9:47:00 AM  

Funny that RAW was brought up. Last Monday night the US Open was on USA for 2 hours and then bumped to CNBC -- so USA could carry RAW.

Presumably the WWE buys the airtime for RAW and that would trump the USTA's contract with USA.

Anonymous said...
Sep 6, 2008, 12:21:00 PM  

Too bad all those classic moments were in a small box in the corner. I know they need to give credit to the production staff but c'mon. Let me see the video too.

Anonymous said...
Sep 6, 2008, 12:43:00 PM  

I thought the vid was okay, but it deff had too much from this year; though that dancing portion was great.

But was USA planning this for some time or something? It seems odd to abruptly decide to stop at 25 years, it's like they had this in mind for at least a couple years.

Also, just started watching it a couple weeks ago during a random marathon-- Burn Notice is a pretty decent show. It provides enough entertainment to watch.

Anonymous said...
Sep 6, 2008, 1:33:00 PM  

Not only is Burn Notice worth watching, so was In Plain Sight. Mary McCormack(Alison Stern in "Private Parts") still has it goin' on.

Bruce said...
Sep 6, 2008, 2:49:00 PM  

Hey, I always liked the Dog Show. It's fun to root for the dogs you own. Let's go Bearded Collie!

Anonymous said...
Sep 6, 2008, 4:23:00 PM  

A second request for the very cheesy but very enjoyable silk stalkings. It deserves another run...of something

MoonshineMike said...
Sep 7, 2008, 1:00:00 PM  

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