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Ilitches consider creating regional TV sports network for Red Wings, Tigers

Ilitch organization considers ending partnership with Fox Sports Detroit

DETROIT – Ilitch Holdings, which include the Detroit Tigers and Red Wings, is considering the creation of a regional sports network to cover its teams and offer other programming.

ORIGINAL STORY: Detroit Red Wings, Tigers owner considers creating regional TV sports network

You might not even think much about the way you watch TV sports, you simply watch the game. 

But, if you tune in for Game 3 of of the World Series, you might consider the Red Sox and the Dodgers each have their own regional television networks for their hometown games. 

Red Wings and Tigers games among the most-watched broadcasts in the entire country, and as Fox Sports Network's future is uncertain due to the Disney merger, the Ilitch family is thinking about dipping its toes into the television production waters. 

In a statement released Thursday, Ilitch Holdings' Olympia Development said, "We feel our organization is uniquely positioned to explore the launch of what we believe could be a highly successful regional sports network."

Bill Shea, of Crain's Detroit Business, is their sports guru. He said technology is fast changing the game and it makes sense for Olympia to think about this.

"There are so many people, so many businesses interested in buying live sports content and new technology is being developed by the hour," Shea said. "It's sort of a wild west of potential."

Shea calls these games DVR-proof because people will sit through the commercials.   

Still, Olympia is open to negotiating an extension with Fox Sports Network when the contract expires in a couple of years. 

Olympia knows sports, pizza and concerts -- TV production and distribution is a new and very expensive venture.


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