Vancouver 2010 a huge TV prize

ROB BRODIE -- Ottawa Sun

, Last Updated: 7:10 AM ET

Call it the Super Bowl of Canadian sports television.

A day after the Patriots and Eagles do battle in Jacksonville, some of the biggest TV power-brokers in this country will make their pitch to land the broadcast rights to the Vancouver 2010 Winter Olympics.

It is perhaps the biggest prize since the last time the Winter Games were held here, in Calgary back in 1988.

"Calgary was such a huge success from many points of view," said Peter Sisam, the VP of television at IMG Canada, which is helping the International Olympic Committee negotiate the deal.

"Vancouver will be even bigger and better."

While CBC has had a lock on Olympic rights since 1996, it faces a serious challenge this time for a package which will also include the 2012 Summer Olympics -- likely to be held in Paris.

CTV has partnered with Rogers Media in an alliance which would -- in an odd twist -- bring TSN and Rogers Sportsnet under the same roof. RDS and the Outdoor Life Network are also sure to be part of the CTV-Rogers pitch, along with the latter's radio stations.

With TSN on the other side of the picture this time, it's believed CBC might need Global and/or The Score as a partner to retain the Games.

All will be decided Feb. 7 at IOC headquarters in Lausanne, with the price tag said to possibly hit $70 million US for Vancouver alone and $120-130 million for the package.

CBC paid $45 million for the 2008 Beijing Olympics, the current Canadian high.

SUPER STUFF: The big game in Jacksonville gets big treatment on TSN SportsCentre and Sportsnet News starting Monday. James Duthie, analyst Chris Schultz and reporter Farhan Lalji are TSN's team at Alltel Stadium, while Jamie Campbell, New York Giants backup QB Jesse Palmer of Nepean and reporter Scott Rintoul head up the 'Net's crew ... Global's ad rate for Super Bowl XXXIX is pricey by Canadian standards: $110,000 for a 30-second spot. CBC asked $57,000 for the same spot for the Grey Cup. Fox, meanwhile, is getting $2.4 million US for 30 seconds worth of ad time. Can you say cha-ching?

ROME BUILT DAILY: ESPN's Jim Rome is Burning, a weekly production since it launched a few years back, is going daily on Feb. 14. And TSN has an interest in bringing the half-hour sports talk show to Canadian viewers. "We're looking very seriously at it," said Rick Chisholm, TSN's senior VP of programming and production. Rome's radio show is a longtime mainstay on The Team 1200.

AROUND THE DIAL: Rogers Television has coverage of all the playoff games, including Sunday's 1:30 p.m. final, from the Ontario Scott Tournament of Hearts at the Rideau Curling Club. As reported earlier this week by the Sun's Barre Campbell, TSN's Vic Rauter will handle the play-by-play ... Sportsnet will air its Feb. 11 broadcast of the Olympiques-Rimouski Oceanic game in Gatineau in high-definition format.


Videos

Photos