Today, I wanted to pull back the curtain on how we cover the Sharks at Comcast SportsNet.
For every game on CSN, there is a broadcast crew on site (home or road) to bring you the telecast. There is also a separate complement of professionals in our San Francisco studios that help us bring you Pregame & Postgame Live.
Here's what a typical 'rundown' looks like. The producer creates this as a road map for the show.
Pregame Live is always a 30 minute program, where our goal is to prepare you for all the things we THINK could happen - based on statistical trends, player interviews and insights from our analysts Curtis Brown, Bret Hedican and Jamie Baker. Our producers usually put in a good 3-4 hours of preparation for each and every one of these shows. I am on hand at least 2 hours prior to prepare notes and conversational points. We always aim to address why the Sharks should be successful that night, but it is also our duty to summarize opponent threats, as well. The prepared viewer, is the better viewer.
|Before a recent show with analyst and former Shark Forward, Curtis Brown. |
|The video "switcher" controls everything you see on screen, and is rather intimidating. |
Postgame Live can go from 30 to as much as 50 minutes in duration, where our priorities are to recap, digest, and put into perspective what we just saw. “Reaction right now” is something you’ll hear us talking about frequently, as we try to bring you all the possible player interviews, as they are happening. Although Pregame is very much “off the cuff” without any scripting, the Postgame shows are even more “free flowing” where sometimes even we (momentarily) aren’t sure what’s coming next. You could say each show is like riding a different roller coaster, in not knowing what unique twists and turns are ahead.
Our studio crew really does operate like a symphony, with the Director acting as conductor. Here’s a breakdown of all the positions we utilize, on a regular basis:Producer -
Organizes show topics and moderates pacing/timingDirector -
Acts as a conductor to synchronize the entire control roomTechnical Director -
Works the video “switcher” for live camera & tape sourcesAudio Operator -
Works the audio “board” for microphone, music & tape sourcesGraphics Operator -
Coordinates all the graphics you see on screenFont Assist -
Creates all the graphics you see on screenEditor -
Pieces together all of the pre-produced video packages/montages we playAssociate Producer -
Works with editor to locate all the right footage / anglesField Photographer -
On site to shoot player & analyst interviewsEngineer -
Coordinate video feeds from NHL arenas to our San Francisco studios
As I hope you have learned here, for every one or two people you see in front of the camera, there are several more behind the scenes to make our shows happen. We are like any hockey team, never perfect… but striving for just that, every night.