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NBC favors New York?

From as far back as the 2007 season, the Buffalo Sabres have hosted a “Party in the Plaza” an event that takes place prior and during the games so that fans without tickets get the chance to participate in a non-stop fan environment. This year, they hosted another party, bigger than what their fans have seen before. This party, like the others, included a large screen for fans to watch the Sabres take on their opponent.

Last year, the Pittsburgh Penguins decided to have a party of their own in front of their arena. Outside of one of the many Mellon Arena gates, there is a huge screen provided by Consol Energy and Trib Total Media. The Pens were allowed to broadcast all but games that were being televised on NBC as the broadcasting company has exclusive rights to those games and what we have recently learned, can pick and choose who gets to show their games to a large public on an over-sized screen.

Just a couple of weeks ago, there was a thought that the Sabres would not get to show one of their contests at the party due to televising conflicts. NBC was to air the game, and if their rules and regulations prove to be correct, it should have been blacked out. According to various sources, the Sabres who hail from Buffalo, New York, the same state as NBC Universal, was allowed to broadcast their games on the big screen, but the Penguins organization have learned that they have not?

Via various online blogs, we have found out that the feed the Sabres received for that game came from inside the arena, straight from what fans would see throughout the game on the jumbo-tron and did not feature commentating from NBC. Though this feature does not directly violate rules set in place by the company, those same thousands of fans NBC felt would bring down their ratings by attending the function if their game was up for show, most likely attended it anyways. And NBC sat around and did nothing??

Some would argue that NBC did not feel as threatened as they would in Pittsburgh’s case as the screen at Mellon Arena is considerably larger than the one at the plaza, but if the Sabres can pull a feed from inside of their arena, why can’t the Pens?? Word is NBC said no to that as well.

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