AMI (American Media, Inc.) and NBC Sports Group have announced an agreement on television rights for the 2014 IFBB Mr. Olympia contest. Past years fans have become accustomed to watch the broadcast online via bodybuilding site so it appears that this announcement may not be a transmission free online this year.
With this announcement, this is another step in the manufacture of bodybuilding over a mass sport; this is in line with the rise in popularity of weight training in general.
New York, TK – American Media, Inc. (AMI) and NBC Sports Group today announced a partnership to televise the 2014 Mr. Olympia contest on NBCSN. The association will feature two 90-minute broadcasts the 50th annual Mr. Olympia, where three-time champion Phil Heath will defend his title at the Orleans Arena in Las Vegas.
“We are excited to partner with NBC Sports Group to bring the excitement of the 2014 Mr. Olympia, and all the events of the weekend Olympia, on national television,” said AMI Chairman, President and CEO David J. Pecker. “The Olympia Weekend is an extraordinary event that highlights the passion and commitment that each contestant takes the stage, and the delight of the more than forty thousand spectators attending the event this year.”
The association meets the Mr. Olympia back to television for the first time since 1984, when Lee Haney won his first of eight titles. NBCSN will air special two 90 minutes throughout the event, the first on October 18 at 1:30 pm ET and the second on October 25 at 5:30 pm ET.
“We look forward to bringing the world’s most prestigious bodybuilding event back to television for their 50th annual competition,” said Lou Ferrer, Director of Programming Acquisitions, NBC Sports Group.
Each transmission will highlight various aspects of the Mr. Olympia contest, with some of the biggest stars of the sport including Kai Greene, Dennis Wolf, Branch Warren, and Mamdouh “Big Ramy” Elssbiay in his attempt to wrest the coveted title of champion defender Phil Heath. One of the most notable winners was a young Austrian bodybuilder named Arnold Schwarzenegger who was named Mr. Olympia in 1970 at 23 years of age. Schwarzenegger was the youngest competitor to win the title, and went on to win seven titles total (1970-1975, 1980).
“It’s a great opportunity to have this year’s Olympia Weekend broadcast on NBCSN, exposing the sport to an even wider to see what bodybuilding and fitness groups are all about and get a close up view of the greatest personalities life, “said Jim Manion IFBB Professional League Chairman. “This not only helps elevate the sport to new heights by showcasing the hard work and passion of the superstars of today as the current and three-time Mr. Olympia Phil Heath, Kai Greene number one challenger, Dennis Wolf, and Shawn Rhoden, may even inspire a future Mr. Olympia. ”
Besides Mr. Olympia crown, telecasts also will showcase how the Mr. Olympia contest has grown from its humble beginnings in 1965 in a four-day exhibition with fitness competitions, Figure and Bikini Olympia, the men and women in physical contests, and various other activities and events. Last year, more than 40,000 people passed through the doors of The Mr. Olympia Weekend Fitness and Performance.
NBCSN, part of the NBC Sports Group, is dedicated to serving passionate sports fans. Now in over 85 million homes, the network’s Emmy Award winner is the cable television home of the summer and Winter Olympics, the National Hockey League (NHL), Premier League, Formula One, the Major League Soccer (MLS), IndyCar, Tour de France, the 34th Copa America, and from 2015 NASCAR. It also has NBCSN college football, college basketball, college hockey, cycling, outdoor programming, horse racing surrounding the Triple Crown and Breeders’ Cup, Fight Night boxing, Ironman, the Dew Tour and USA Rugby Sevens. The network is also home to the original programs such as Costas Tonight, NFL Turning Point, Pro Football Talk, The Dan Patrick Show, Dash Sports and Yahoo! Sports NASCAR America. NBCSN is distributed via cable systems and satellite operators in the United States.