NBC Sports has onlookers doing remote control gymnastics

Looking at the 122nd The US Open looked like an Olympic sport. Call it remote-controlled gymnastics and yours is really up for the podium after Day 1.

The good news first: NBC Sports offers more than 45 hours of live league coverage Thursday through Sunday, not to mention over 100 jaw-dropping hours of live streaming coverage from Brookline, Massachusetts, including featured groups and holes. in the foreground.

But to do that, viewers had to bounce from Peacock to USA Network to return NBC to the US and one final stop at Peacock. It was harder to keep up with a three-card Monte game. Unless you have a cheat sheet, good luck.

I know some of you are reading this complaint and thinking, “Really, did you have to change channels four times in 14 hours? Oh humanity!” Sure, most of us can figure out how to press a button four times, but the question is why should we have to do this in this day and age?

My take is that this plan was devised by a group of overpaid executives with imaginative MBAs who are probably pretty good at their day job, but are clearly not golf fans.

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Peacock, NBC’s streaming service that debuted in 2020, is the network’s new darling, and the US Open could likely target new users to the fledgling platform or feature bonus content that will keep existing users coming back for more.

Yet when the television coverage of 122nd The US Open got off to a brilliant start and early Thursday on Peacock only did so for those premium members who were already paying for Premier League football, WWE and its Olympic coverage, among other things. Didn’t reluctantly shell out $ 4.99 for the month – guess my wife and I can finally binge eat Yellowstone – so I was able to watch the rounds of the likes of Collin Morikawa, Jordan Spieth and Jon Rahm begin.

I wasn’t the only one annoyed at having to extract my credit card information and agree to be charged for yet another streaming platform. (Note to yourself: Don’t forget to cancel in 30 days as you normally do.) John Sluhan, Chief Pro at Boone Valley Golf Club in St. Louis, he wrote: “I’d like to pay $ 4.99 to bounce all day, but I’ll save it for a gallon of gas and just switch between the two cable channels like my dad and grandpa. Hell, I might as well change the channels manually for the sake of the old days or hear the conclusion on that radio thing lol.

“Happy to pay for featured group coverage, but empathize with those who can’t afford it,” Tim Lyons saidthat sounds like someone I’d like to fit in my pocket in a Wolf game.

Others noted that featured group coverage was free on the USGA app. I wish someone had told me before I paid for a month of Peacock. However, for the USGA operator of the US Open, which many believe has been overtaken in importance by the Masters, it may not be a good thing that its TV partner keeps switching platforms. The televised presentation of the Masters is second to none, and asking viewers to pay for initial coverage has been largely panned, at least if you believe social media. The biggest bone to pick is to pay for another unbundled product and then be forced into the ads, in this case a seemingly endless cycle of ClifBar ads. When an ad didn’t sell, the Zen music on the air reminded me of the tunes in the waiting room at a luxurious spa. Very Zen.

At 9:30 am ET, coverage switched to USA Network. I don’t know about you, but if the Family feud the question was which TV network would you click on to watch professional golf, USA Network would get an “X”. By no means would it be one of the top 5 answers on the board. This, in part, is because this is a new initiative from NBC that began “expanding its roster” in January with the addition of premium content from NBC Sports. The goal is to bring “new communities to the United States, further consolidating the network as a premier destination for the best and broadest entertainment in all its many formats.”

He managed to get me to USA Network, which I haven’t watched since Do you live And Burn warning. It reminded me of the annual hunt to find Tru TV for the NCAA March Madness.

Most responses to a tweet I sent asking how people feel about remote-controlled gymnastics have expressed dismay at the unnecessary work involved in watching a golf tournament. I have yet to hear a good explanation as to why a network that owns Golf Channel is not using it. I digress, but this cannot bode well for the future of GC, which has been dwarfed since it closed its Orlando office and moved a small staff to Stamford, Connecticut.

But not everyone seemed to care about having to change the channel, once again when Dan Hicks and Paul Azinger’s A-team emerged to lead the NBC hours. Twitter follower named Casual Water, a self-proclaimed “golf discord junkie”, he answered, “I feel like my fat (curse) can change channels once every three hours and I’ll survive. I’m just glad it’s on all day. It hasn’t always been like this. “

No arguments there. At 5 p.m. ET it was USA Network’s second time to shine, if you’re keeping the score at home. All those USA Network diehards must have been thrilled to be passing by an episode of Chicago fire at the Country Club.

At 7 p.m. ET, as Phil Mickelson marched around 18th green, the time allotted to USA Network has come to an end, Hicks explained, and an episode of, you guessed it, Chicago fire was on the bridge. It was time to go back to where it all started hours ago: pay-for-play coverage on Peacock.

“You can watch 9 and a half hours of coverage on the basic cable between the US and NBC. You can watch the coverage of featured groups and holes all day for free on the website and app. Yet there are still a lot of people complaining about the * option * to pay and watch Peacock too, ” tweeted David Lettieria former golf pro turned lawyer.

Glad I was a rookie subscriber to see Mickelson finish a terrible 78. It was the only place to see Canadian Adam Hadwin hold out for the first-round advantage at 4-under.

When coverage on Day 1 came to its conclusion, there was no argument that NBC Sports is offering an absurd amount of coverage. From the opening drive to the final putt, spectators can wear out the golf coverage in a variety of ways. But it sure would be easier if it aired in one place (and ad-free for those paying a subscription).

The Players Group, a marketing and sports management company in the golf sector, he could have said it better in his reply to my tweet: “It’s crazy and uncomfortable, but we’ll do it anyway.”

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