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Neil Best leaves no stone unturned in the world of sports media.

ESPN: Your cable $$$ at work

These are heady days for ESPN, what with the BCS finale likely to be the most-watched show in cable TV history and the news (via Sports Business Journal) that a deal with the NFL is near to extend its rights to “Monday Night Football.’’

Boo-yah!

Oh, one other thing: SBJ reported the price of those rights will rise from the current $1.1 billion per year to around $1.8 or $1.9 billion . . . still without any playoff games included.

No big deal? Not your money? Hello: ESPN is (by far) the most expensive single programming cost for pay TV providers, and throwing money at sports entities inevitably causes its rates to rise further.

On its way from your wallet into those of owners and players the money must pass through the bloated television delivery system, leading to higher monthly bills.

When that happens, please do not to put all the blame on your friendly cable company; if you want it to carry ESPN, remember that $2 billion has to come from somewhere.

(Cablevision owns Newsday.)

As for people who must pay cable bills that include all sorts of expensive sports programming but who don't follow sports at all . . . oy. Don't get me started.

Tags: ESPN , NFL , money

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