A sneak peek at the upcoming TV sports viewing experience, but the visuals fell short.

For those in the sports world, last week’s glitch on sports TV brought back a wave of nostalgia. Back then, everyone had just three channels, tin foil-wrapped bunny ears, and a whisper of silence on air. However, the present and future of this medium has undoubtedly been troubling. There are multiple reasons to worry about the big picture, and it seems as though what’s best for fans is not part of it.

During the fourth quarter of Game 1 of the Celtics vs. Heat Eastern Conference Finals on TNT, Reggie Miller’s analysis was the second most annoying thing that befell fans. The broadcast was interrupted when Miami called a timeout, and a trailer for the movie The Little Mermaid aired instead. Fans missed out on the rest of the game, which the Heat eventually won 123-116.

There were suspicions that the trailer was coded to prevent fast-forwarding and somehow caused the problem, but similar glitches occurred on other channels available on the streaming service. The dissatisfaction among fans was genuine and legitimate.

YouTube TV prices have been increasing even as sports fan services are declining. Parent company Google increased the monthly fee to $72.99 in April, a significant jump from the $34.99 starting price at launch in 2017. Rising content costs were cited as the reason for this increase, which should be of great interest to sports fans. Channels such as regional sports networks, including NESN, and MLB network were terminated, and YouTube TV acquired the rights in December.

The NFL’s coveted Sunday ticket package comes at a steep price of $2 billion per season over seven years. The basic package costs $349 per season for YouTube TV subscribers and $449 for non-subscribers. The NFL playoffs will be airing on Peacock, but the league still airs all regular season and postseason games on free TV in the local market.

Should there be a Sunday ticket crash, just like what happened with TNT, millions of angry fans from over 20 markets are likely to voice out their frustrations. YouTube TV’s response to glitches has been pathetic, and they’ve only shown vague apologetic tweets.

While losing footage may be frustrating for fans, it’s not as annoying as the big picture on sports TV. Fans are urged to prepare for the worst and appreciate the NFL games on free TV while they still can.

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