Strategic Goes Four for Four With Boxing, MMA Quadruple-Header
On Saturday Feb. 6, Strategic Television had a super management day of its own, managing the transmission of four simultaneous boxing and mixed-martial-arts events. The fights spanned North America — from Newark, NJ, to Monterrey, Mexico — and Strategic Television brought out a range of satellite trucks, fiber-optic feeds, HD and SD encoding, satellite space, and international teleport services to handle the four transmissions simultaneously.
“Strategic does all of the UFC pay-per-view events, as well as all of Showtime and Top Rank’s televised events,” says Jason Land, VP of Strategic Television, a division of PSSI Global Services. “Each of the events came to us as the schedules were finalized.”
In addition to the UFC-109 fight in Las Vegas on Saturday, Strategic managed transmission for the Valero vs. DeMarco fight in Monterrey; Rios vs. Teron in McAllen, TX; and Adamek vs. Estrada in Newark.
Throughout its 30-year history, Strategic has handled more-difficult simultaneous transmissions — two high-profile HD pay-per-view events in September are one example — but Saturday’s foursome posed plenty of challenges.
“Each project manager put together their portion, and then we met together to discuss,” Land says. “We worked with each other to make sure that we were not doubling up on resources, looked at what our routings were, and moved some things around.”
Individual broadcasters sometimes pick up the transmission for more than one of Strategic’s events, but, on Saturday, few broadcasters picked up more than one event, so that simplified the transmission process. One wrench thrown into the works was the snowstorm that blanketed the East Coast over the weekend.
“There was some bad weather in Washington, DC, so we had to have some backup plans in place to reroute things,” Land says. “But there wasn’t a lot that we had to do differently to accommodate four events. We’re a company that can deal with four simultaneous events that are all going domestic and international.”
Over the course of the four-event weekend, Strategic dispatched a range of satellite trucks from the PSSI Global Services fleet of 26 C- and Ku-band uplink units, HD and SD fiber-encoding packages, fiber-optic feeds, satellite space, International teleport services, and on-site management for all four locations.