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Lance Armstrong not happy with Versus

Image (1) Armstrong1-thumb-200x300-11921.jpg for post 1694

Lance Armstrong isn’t happy and when he speaks out, nearly 3 million people listen.

The man who put the Outdoor Life Network -- soon to be Versus -- on the map was incensed when the network cut away from the final minutes of Stage 3 of the Tour of California. Here is what Armstrong had to say:

“Who’s the dumbass @versustv that cut off @AmgenTourofCali coverage w/ a mile to go for pregame hockey?? #pathetic”

With the way that the Versus has been quick this season to cut their postgame shows short, you have to wonder just how important it was to cut away from what was apparently an exciting finish to the stage. That is, until you consider just how much bigger the NHL audience is over the cycling audience, and how important the network has made it’s hockey coverage out to be.

From Sports Illustrated:

But hopefully the gaffe won’t happen again. Roth said the race received assurances from Versus that Wednesday’s Stage Four would be shown in its entirety. Of course, no NHL playoff games are scheduled for Wednesday. In the pecking order, the cult of hockey ranks ahead of the cult of cycling.

“There are different hierarchies in contractual obligations,” Roth sighed.

I can understand the frustration, especially when your consider that this was a pregame show and not the actual game itself. Somewhere, an executive made the decision that upsetting the Tour was much better than upsetting the NHL. I’m sure he’s able to live with that decision, no matter how upset Lance Armstrong gets.

For hockey fans, they should be proud. It’s not every day that the NHL trumps other sports coverage.