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Ron Judd's Olympics Insider

Ron Judd, an Olympics junkie and Seattle Times columnist who has covered Olympic sports since 1997, will use this space to serve up news and opinion on the Summer and Winter Games -- also inviting you to chime in on Planet Earth's biggest get-together.

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August 24, 2008 10:26 PM

Ebersol pretty much owns, runs the Olympics -- just ask him

Posted by Ron Judd

See the details of how the IOC basically takes its marching orders from the NBC programming genius on questions of what time of year and day and minute to stage the Games, as boasted to the New York Times.

In the article, IOC President non-elect Dick Ebersol takes personal credit for moving the Beijing Games forward by almost two months. He also explains in detail how he co-opted swimmer Michael Phelps from very early on to make him a sales tool of NBC, especially its efforts to move swimming to morning sessions, so it could be broadcast live on the East Coast of the U.S.

Oh, yeah: He also knew China was going to get the Games -- and when they would be -- before China did. And much, much, more.

No mention, of course, of the fact that such monkeying with the schedule puts the Summer Games at the very hottest time of the year in some very hot places -- to the detriment of athletes and everyone else involved. None of that matters, because, as we all know, it's all about (East Coast) ratings. And besides: what's a few hospitalized marathoners in the face of 100 million in ad revenue?

At least this clears up some confusion: When he interviewed Jacques Rogge the other night, we thought we saw Bob Costas slip the IOC prez an envelope. Must've been his paycheck.

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Blogroll and links The official International Olympic Committtee site, with news releases, a searchable Olympic medals database and other archival information. Olympic news site from one of the Games' primary sponsors.
NBC Olympics columnist Alan Abrahamson's column/blog
Chicago Tribune Olympic sports writer Philip Hersh's blog U.S. Olympic Committee's athlete web site. Ed and Sheila Hula's Olympic News Service (subscription). News service with audio, video and text coverage of Olympic sports, during and between Olympics. Free, but charges for live video feed subscriptions. Beijing Organizing Committee Web site. Vancouver Organizing Committee's 2010 Winter Games site. London 2012 Summer Games site. Sochi, Russia's 2014 Winter Games site. Candidate city Chicago's summer 2016 bid committee site.
Olympic swimmer Tara Kirk's highly entertaining WCSN blog
Bellevue Olympian Scott Macartney's WCSN alpine ski-racing blog
Other WCSN Olympic athlete blogs.