I have gotta say we are likely some of the luckiest fans in the NBA in terms of how the product is produced for our viewing benefit on the TV machine. I know over the last week or two there has been a lot of debate on the Mike & Mike Duo in terms of the on air talent (I fall firmly into the love them camp, as somebody put it, Mike Rice will say just about anything and Mike Barret is able to keep him from getting fired by reeling him in quickly and subtly). But they are not the only thing that matters in a good high quality broadcast.
I had the opportunity/misfortune to watch the original broadcast of the Spurs-Blazers game from last Friday from the Spurs feed as I was back in Ohio hoing to a doctors appointment with my mother. My brother has NBA TV and he taped the wrong feed. I watched the game with my nephews and they got bored out of their mind (I did too a bit) and one of them is an NBA fan for sure. The announcers were dry, the camera work and set ups bad, the sound was sketchy (low crowd noise, high volume on music and sound system background. And, while I was pumped by the phenomenal finish of that game, the comeback, the turnovers by the Spurs, the steals by the Blazers, the amazing last second shot just everything that happened in the last minute, you barely got a sense of the drama unfolding from there announcers.
I am not saying these guys should have been overjoyed by what was happening, their team just went through an uncharcteristic collapse to close that game out, but there was no sense of drama from the turnovers and little more than an impressed acknowledgement of the final play and crowd noise. We all saw the Mike and Mike feed and that was amazing coverage (except for the do you believe in miracles line from Rice, but that was almost endearing Rice anyway)That is a comparison of the announcers by and large. What about the other things.
First off our camera crews rock, they get out on the court and follow a key player around moving the huddle, you know capture some flavor of the game at these moments. The most I noticed from the spurs guys was shots of the cheerleaders, but nothing interesting there. I mean those shots on court of the post game celebration really added something to the enjoyment of the close of that game.
Then the game action cameras seem to be a little closer to the audience for the Blazers, gives you almost a sense of being there. They must set them lower than other brodcast teams or something. The Spurs feed looked almost sanitized in comparison, I think it is higher up.
Finally, our truck team is awesome. They queue up replays faster than their competition by far. They have more angles available more quickly than you can believe when watching another outfit at work. Their stuff is national broadcast quality for sure. I suppose that is the main difference between the Blazers and their direct other team counterparts, Blazer Broadcasting is set up to compete with the national crews at ESPN or TNT, the other team productions just do not stand up to the production level at all.
We as Blazer fans are lucky to have such a strong broadcast team top to bottom.