Friday, February 16, 2007

Two Big Events, One Big Weekend

By: Jim Williams
The Examiner

The Daytona 500 and the NBA All Star Game dominate a big sports weekend with plenty of action.

SPEED, ESPN and FOX5/FOX 45 are your locations for all things Daytona. The twin 125 races that will make up the rest of the field behind pole sitters and Yates Ford teammates David Gilliland and Ricky Rudd will be run Thursday at 2pm on SPEED. Also on SPEED Friday at 8pm live NASCAR Craftsman Truck Series from Daytona.

Saturday ESPN returns to NASCAR after a seven year absence as “The Duce,” becomes the official home of the Busch Series at 1pm the ORBITZ 300 can be seen on ESPN2.

Sunday afternoon at 1pm on FOX it will be “The Great American Race,” the Daytona 500 live. All the NASCAR and Busch races will be presented in HD.

Special additions to NASCAR will see DirecTV offering “Hot Pass,” a chance to watch every NASCAR Race from the view of five different drivers. They will have their own announce crews and total coverage including the ability to listen live the driver-crew chief channel. Michael Waltrip, Dale Earnhardt Jr., Jimmie Johnson, Kevin Harvick, and Tony Stewart will be this week’s group of drivers to choose from and Eric Shanks the EVP of Entertainment for DirecTV told me that “This is the most ambitious project that we have ever undertaken. We have some of the top announcers and producers working as part of our production team covering the five drivers that we will choose each race.”

SIRIUS Satellite Radio will offer up to ten driver’s audio channels each NASCAR race for fans. Check the site to find out each weeks list and vote for a fan favorite to be added each week.

NBA All Star Weekend in Vegas Baby…

ESPN will televise the 2007 McDonald’s NBA All-Star Celebrity Game Presented by 2K Sports Friday, Feb. 16 at 7 p.m. from the Mandalay Bay Resort and Casino in Las Vegas featuring Academy Award winner Jamie Foxx, Grammy Award-winning recording artist Nelly, Desperate Housewives star James Denton, New Orleans Saints running back Reggie Bush, actor and executive producer David Arquette. Then at 9pm on TNT is the T-Mobile Rookie Challenge & Youth Jam.

Saturday Night on TNT at 8:30pm is one of the best nights of basketball fun with the Three Point Shootout featuring the Wiz All Star Gilbert Arenas taking on defending champ Dallas Mavericks’ Dirk Nowitzki.

Also airing on TNT as part of NBA All-Star Saturday Night will be the Sprite Slam Dunk, Skills Challenge and Haier Shooting Stars. Then on Sunday Wizards All Stars Gilbert Arenas, Caron Butler and Coach Eddie Jordan will be part of the 56th NBA All-Star Game at 8:30 p.m. on TNT.

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