WCAP: We'll Carry Leno If Boston NBC Affiliate Won't
April 6, 2009 at 5:00 AM (PT)
ED ANSIN is playing hardball with NBC again, this time in BOSTON, and MERRIMACK VALLEY RADIO Talk WCAP-A/LOWELL, MA is standing ready to step in if ANSIN's NBC affiliate WHDH-TV goes ahead with its refusal to carry JAY LENO's new show at 10p ET weeknights.
WHDH has informed NBC that it will bump LENO, who grew up in ANDOVER, MA, near WCAP, in favor of a 10p newscast in order to go head-to-head with the newscast of FOX O&O WFXT (TV) (FOX 25) in that time slot, and NBC has reacted by threatening to pull WHDH's network affiliation and has promised that LENO will air at 10p somewhere in BOSTON if it has to flip its own TELEMUNDO affiliate WNEU-TV/MANCHESTER, NH, a BOSTON rimshot, to NBC. ANSIN's WSVN-TV/MIAMI lost its NBC affiliation in 1988 when NBC bought another station in that market after years of disputes over preemptions of network programming.
WCAP Exec. News Editor DEAN JOHNSON told the LAWRENCE EAGLE-TRIBUNE that his station has contacted NBC to see if it can run the audio from LENO's show. "This JAY LENO thing has become the next 'shot heard round the world' in MASSACHUSETTS. It's the television version of the BOSTON Tea Party ... Why not give people the opportunity to listen to JAY every weeknight? I have to think it's a revenue thing. If they put on a local show in that slot, all the revenue goes to them."