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Friday, July 10, 2020

NBC exec says there will be some gambling references during NFL broadcasts

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The NFL and its television partner networks have tried to take a cautious approach since the Supreme Court overturned the federal ban on sports betting, but one major network is going to allow some gambling talk on the air during the 2019 season.

On Tuesday, an NBC executive said there will continue to be some “somewhat isolated” gambling references during NFL broadcasts this season.

If you remember, CBS told its announcers to avoid gambling references last year just before the NFL season got underway. However, they seem to find a way to trickle out at times on NBC, usually courtesy of Al Michaels.

Fans tend to enjoy when announcers make references to gambling, as many viewers have money on the games or are taking part in pools involving spreads and other Las Vegas odds. Michaels has always had a penchant for mentioning point spreads and betting odds while calling games, and Joe Buck alluded to that while providing some gambling commentary of his own during an NFL game two years ago — even if his reference didn’t make much sense.

While the NFL has called on Congress to regular sports betting, league officials know how important gambling is for ratings and interest. NBC executives know, too.

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