Olympic fans on the west coast now have an extra incentive to cheer for Michael Phelps. Media Bistro received an anonymous tip, saying NBC is 'seriously considering ' televising Phelps' last race live for the entire nation, not just the eastern and central time zones, as they have done throughout the Games.
NBC giving serious consideration to airing Saturday's prime-time Olympic coverage live in all time zones due to Michael Phelps' potential 8th gold medal. This would allow full network to show race as it is happening. Otherwise, West Coast viewers would see it three hours after it takes place. Final decision may be made late Thursday night EDT.
If Phelps is actually on the verge of earning his eight gold medal, I think NBC would be stupid not to show it live in every time zone. The number of angry viewers they would have to put up with if they didn't show the race live would be astronomical.
Showing the competition live though would be opening a Pandora's box of sorts for the network. As Maggie mentioned, NBC has already taunted viewers on the west coast with 'live' graphics. If this race is broadcast on Saturday live, then what happens on Sunday when all the west coast viewers want to see the other events as they are taking place, and instead, are forced to watched tape-delayed coverage once again. NBC has backed themselves into a corner here and it will be interesting to see how it plays out.
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