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Mark Cuban's HDNet Has Work to Do on Production Quality of MMA Broadcasts

Dallas Mavericks owner Mark Cuban wants to become a big player in mixed martial arts, and I'm glad that HDNet, the cable channel he owns, provided live coverage of the Dream.3 show in Japan this weekend.

But Jim Murphy of The Savage Science makes some good points that reflect what I was thinking while I watched Dream.3: HDNet has some work to do on the production values of its live MMA coverage. Murphy writes:
my experience as a DREAM.3 viewer bordered on painful. Were it not my job to do a play by play narrative on the event I would have literally turned it off midway through. For the production and broadcast elements to be so qualitatively poor as to ruin an excellent night of fights is downright inexcusable. The HD Net US coverage of DREAM.3 was easily the worst overall production of a major promotion fight sport show that I've ever seen. In a lifetime of watching boxing, pro wrestling and MMA I've honestly never seen anything like it.
I'm not quite prepared to go that far -- I saw some 1980s pro wrestling shows that looked like they were being broadcast by a guy standing in his basement with a camcorder -- but HDNet's work is, from a technical perspective, clearly inferior to the product UFC puts out.

Even if you forgive HDNet for cutting costs by not sending its announcers to Japan, they could have done a better job of giving home viewers the feel of being there, they could have shown the clock to let viewers know how much time was left in each round, and Bas Rutten could have seemed like he cared more about the fights. It was a disappointing effort for HDNet.

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