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ESPN International, Fox Sports International, NASN Europe and U.S. Armed Forces Network provide global television reach; 61 million TV households attained in the U.S., plus HD coverage by VOOM’s WorldSport HD on DISH Network
TORONTO, ON and NEW YORK, NY — The Canadian Football League’s annual Grey Cup championship game will have its widest international coverage ever in 2006, with the broadcast reaching television viewers across the U.S., Europe, Australia, New Zealand and the Pacific Rim – as well as the first simulcast in Spanish to Mexico and 19 other countries in Central America, South America and the Caribbean.
“The 94th Grey Cup’s unprecedented TV outreach makes it a truly international sporting event – enabling new audiences to share in the unique excitement of this Canadian football experience,” said CFL Commissioner Tom Wright. “The League thanks its international broadcast distribution and marketing/sales partner, Trajectory Sports and Media Group, for taking the Grey Cup’s global exposure to new heights.”
This year’s Grey Cup will be played November 19 at Winnipeg, Manitoba, matching up the Montreal Alouettes and B.C. Lions. The championship game begins at 6:00 p.m. Eastern Standard Time, and the television feed is being produced by the Canadian Football League’s national rights holder, CBC Sports.
International households capable of seeing the 2006 Grey Cup have more than doubled this year to 21 million, the result of adding the full Spanish-language simulcast on ESPN Dos, along with the coverage provided by ESPN International’s Pacific Rim feed. ESPN Dos serves 20 Spanish-speaking countries (including Mexico, the Dominican Republic, Ecuador, Guatemala, Nicaragua, Panama, Peru and Venezuela), while ESPN International’s Grey Cup broadcast will be distributed in Australia, New Zealand, Micronesia, Fiji the Marshall Islands and Palau.
“This is the first time ESPN has joined the ranks of international Grey Cup broadcasters, adding another dimension to the championship game’s coverage,” explained Richard Stone, the President of Trajectory Sports and Media Group LLC. “Its Spanish-language simulcast opens up a whole new fan base for Canadian football.”
Other international broadcasters carrying the Grey Cup in 2006 are Fox Sports International (with coverage in Turkey, Egypt, Israel, Jordan, Kuwait, Saudi Arabia, Bahrain, and the United Arab Emirates) and the U.S. Armed Forces Network, which has outlets in 172 countries around the globe – from Afghanistan to Zimbabwe. Both of these networks broadcast the Grey Cup in 2005.
Also providing live Grey Cup again this year is NASN (the North America Sports Network), which is offering expanded coverage to England, Ireland, France, Germany, Sweden, Belgium, the Netherlands, Luxemburg, Monaco, Russia, Latvia, Moldova, Lithuania and 10 other countries.
In the United States, the 2006 Grey Cup will be available to 61 million homes in standard definition television and to DISH Network’s 12 million customers in High Definition via VOOM’s WorldSport in HD. The following networks have carried CFL games weekly throughout the 2006 season and will also telecast the 94th Grey Cup: SNY (Comcast Sportsnet New York); NESN (New England Sports Network); Comcast SportsNet outlets in Philadelphia, the Mid-Atlantic region, Chicago and San Francisco; Comcast NorthWest (Oregon and SW Washington); Comcast Seattle (video on demand); CSS in Atlanta; Catch 47 – Tampa Bay Sports Television; Cox Sports Television South (Louisiana); Time Warner Sports 26 (Syracuse, New York); Altitude Sports & Entertainment (Denver) and the America One Television Network. Satellite TV subscribers can access the game live on DIRECTV channels 644 and 656, and DISH Network channels 409 and 410.
High definition coverage of the 94th Grey Cup will be available nationally from VOOM HD Network’s World Sport in HD on DISH Network, which now serves more than 12 million subscribers across the U.S.
U.S. mobile telephone access to the CFL Wireless service has tripled, reaching 150 million handsets serviced by Verizon Wireless, Cingular and Sprint. And for the playoffs and 94th Grey Cup, CFL Mobile has launched a “Show your support” program in the U.S. which prompts fans – during the broadcast of games – to text a request from their phones to download their favorite team’s logo. CFL Wireless is serviced in the U.S. by Setanta Mobile, in association with Red Fish Media.
Rounding out the unprecedented 2006 Grey Cup exposure will be live game coverage on SIRIUS Satellite Radio, which has carried CFL audio play-by-play action throughout this year. The Grey Cup will be available to more than 5 million subscribers on Channel 186.
About the Canadian Football League
Building on a strong past toward a stronger future, the Canadian Football League (CFL) celebrates the best of Canada’s game with fans across the nation. The 94th Grey Cup will be played in Winnipeg, Manitoba on November 19, 2006.