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OLYMPIC NOTES

There's Talk of Bailey Facing Johnson in 150

August 07, 1996|From Associated Press

Canadian Donovan Bailey's agents are toying with the idea of matching the Olympic 100-meter champion against Michael Johnson over 150 meters.

"It's purely speculative at this stage," Ray Flynn, one of the Bailey's agents, said Tuesday. "We haven't gone past just the idea."

Bailey won the Olympic 100 with a world-record time of 9.84 seconds, Johnson the 200 in a world-record 19.32 and the 400 in an Olympic-record 43.49.

"It only came to the fore because American TV was so pro-Michael and the commentators were so full of the fastest man in the world sort of thing," Flynn said. "They were adding the 100-meter times of Donovan and equating them with what Johnson was running. It's completely ridiculous."

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NBC's Olympics coverage attracted 209 million viewers, more than any event in U.S. television history, and reached 91.7% of the nation's 88 million households with television, the network said.

The 1994 Winter Olympics in Lillehammer drew 204 million viewers.

On average, the 17-day coverage earned a 21.6 rating and 41 share, a 26% increase over the 1992 Games at Barcelona. Those Games earned a 17.1 rating and 33 share for 16 dates. But the Atlanta average is lower than the 23.2/44 for the Los Angeles Games in 1984.

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Not only did Argentina lose to Nigeria for the gold medal in soccer, the team also had problems with its Howard Johnson's hotel in Athens, Ga., and filed a formal complaint alleging price gouging.

Jack Udhwani, the hotel manager, said the team got a bigger bill than expected because it used extra rooms and stayed extra days to compete for the gold medal. He said the language barrier made it difficult to explain.

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