We had a great run in San Antonio for the NCAA men’s Final Four. All our trucks and engineers have left the building, and PSSI Global Services has left behind yet another flawless run through March Madness. Of course, we don’t have much time to rest on our laurels.
We are coming up on the final rounds of the Masters in Augusta, Georgia. Craig Henry and Kevin Spangler continue their round-the-clock coverage from Augusta, where the best golfers in the world will be competing for the coveted Green Jacket on Sunday. This year’s tournament has the smallest field of players in 20 years, but the ones who are playing are truly incredible. PSSI News Group’s Charlie Neiswenter is also there alongside Kevin and Craig to capture all the excitement for CNN’s coverage of the tournament.
This year at the Masters it was announced by Augusta National Chairman Fred Ridley that starting in 2019 they will break with tradition and begin the Augusta National Women’s Amateur Championship, to be played on Saturday before the final day of the Masters on Sunday. This new tournament will bring together 72 of the world’s best amateur female golfers to compete. PSSI Global Services is looking forward to having a truck there for that tournament, too!
Chris Golden is taking a break from golf to spend his weekend at Curb Event Center in Nashville, Tennessee, where the U.S. men’s tennis team battles Belgium this weekend in the Davis Cup quarterfinals.
Benny Griffis just left Nashville after providing transmission services from the famous Exit/In for the most recent Bud Light Dive Bar Tour with Post Malone as the featured artist. Post Malone played his newest song, “Stay,” and announced the release date for his latest album.
After a well-deserved week off, NASCAR resumes this week at Texas Motor Speedway with the 2018 O’Reilly Auto Parts 500, and Ben Bradshaw and Jonathan Ayala will be on-site with C27 at the track to bring you all the action. This Monster Energy NASCAR Cup Series race is the seventh so far this season, with 334 laps on the 1 1/2 mile, intermediate, quad-oval track. Tune in on Sunday to catch every heart-stopping turn.
Justin Roszak and K38 will be in Miami Beach, Florida, this weekend for a little gaming. Justin’s providing 1080p encoding and transmission for the North American League of Legends Championship Series Spring Finals. This two-day event will feature two series, with the third place match on Saturday and the first place match on Sunday. We’re fielding a lot of requests for 1080p encoding from our gaming and corporate customers, and we are upgrading our compression and monitoring equipment to keep up with the demand.
More fighting in Vegas this weekend. Joe Cox with K33 and Ray Loyko with the Midwest truck will both be at the Hard Rock Hotel & Casino in Las Vegas, Nevada, on Saturday for Showtime boxing. This weekend’s main event features Erislandy Lara facing Jarrett Hurd in the IBF WBA super welterweight title bout. Project managers Victor Verno and Michael Hollander will ensure flawless distributions to domestic and international boxing fans.
Still further west, Mark Huss will have the Starlight truck at Belasco Theater in Los Angeles, California, on Friday for Golden Boy Promotions’ LA Fight Club. This Friday’s main event features Marlen Esparza of Houston, Texas, taking on Laetizia Campana, as well as Hector Tanajara Jr. and Pablo Rubio Jr. competing in separate matches.
We’re pretty busy in LA this weekend, as it’s time for the 2018 Darley Awards Weekend. Amongst other highlights, this annual event crowns the Arabian horse racing champions of the United States. Chris Hovden and the K19 will start the weekend off at Dolby Theater in Hollywood, California, on Friday evening for the awards.
Wes Hill takes over with K19 on Saturday when it heads to Santa Anita Racetrack in Arcadia for the HH Sheikha Fatima Bint Mubarak Darley Awards Stake. This event, with a total of 15 nominees, has a purse of $100,000 to be paid out to the top five finishers.
Chris Hovden will take the reins of K19 again on Sunday and head to the Beverly Wilshire Four Seasons hotel in Beverly Hills for the Darley Gala Banquet and Annual Stallion Auction. The gala banquet is a truly regal event, attended by many dignitaries and competitors alike.
Patriot League lacrosse is keeping us busy out east this weekend.
- Rick Varney and the Arizona truck will be at Nickerson Field at Boston University when the BU Terriers take on the Army West Point Black Knights.
- Dennis Smith and the Columbia truck will be at Stabler Athletic and Convention Center at Lehigh University in Bethlehem, Pennsylvania, when the Loyola University Maryland Greyhounds take on the Lehigh University Mountain Hawks.
- Dave Buckman and K46 will be at Navy-Marine Corps Stadium in Annapolis, Maryland, when the Colgate Raiders take on the Navy Midshipmen.
The rest of our team in the Northeast has their hands full with UFC 223 at Barclays Center in Brooklyn, New York. Our team kicked things off with a press conference on Wednesday, for which we provided full production and transmission services out of K18. Steve Hagerty was there with Mike Lemieux, Jim Flowers and project managers Keith Valeri and Garrett Hunt to start things off with a bang.
Mike Howley and Mati Kerpen will converge in Brooklyn early Friday morning to join Mike, Jim, Keith and Garrett to set up and test for the pay-per-view, and Dave Mitchell will come in Saturday to provide an emergency backup path for the huge event. The main event fight between Tony Ferguson and Khabib Nurmagomedov had to be cancelled when Tony Ferguson suffered a knee injury. UFC featherwight champion Max Holloway stepped up at the last minute to face Khabib Nurmagonmedov instead. The co-main event will be UFC strawweight champion Rose Namajunas facing Joanna Jedrzejczyk. Other matches on the main card include Calvin Kattar fighting Renato Moicano, Michael Chiesa battling Anthony Pettis and Paul Felder matched up against Al Iaquinta. Our team has their hands full with extensive transmission services to MMA fans around the world.
The biggest show of all is already underway in New Orleans. It is WrestleMania weekend in the Big Easy, and we have all but opened up another PSSI headquarters to accommodate the unprecedented amount of transmission services we’re providing for our friends and partners at WWE. Project manager Logan Schinto has been planning fiber and satellite services and building an enormous transmission overview over the past couple of weeks. The main event will be delivered to viewers in over 180 countries, including every single wrestling fan in the United States.
CK30 driver Joe Kelderhouse has the mobile teleport parked and powered at the Mercedez-Benz Superdome, where Zane Michaels and John Bright are alongside project manager Logan Schinto in the truck keeping across all the services in and out of New Orleans. Meanwhile, Mike Sheehan is over at the Smoothie King Center getting ready for Friday’s Hall of Fame show. The main show starts after a red carpet show hosted by Maria Menounos, and it is a unique event in that the stars all shed their personalities and honor those who work so hard for this well-loved sport. The list of inductees will include such fan favorites as Jeff Jarrett, The Dudley Boyz, Ivory, Kid Rock and Hillbilly Jim.
Next on the lineup is the WWE NXT TakeOver: New Orleans on Saturday from the Smoothie King Center. Some of the expected highlight matches are the NXT Championship match between Andrade “Cien” Almas and Aleister Black; the North American Championship (Ladder Match) between Alan Cole, Velveteen Dream, Killian Dain, Lars Sullivan, Ricochet and EC3; the NXT Women’s Championship between Ember Moon and Shayna Baszler; an unsanctioned match between ex-NXT champion Johnny Gargano and Tommaso Ciampa; and the NXT Tag Team Championship between Undisputed Era, Authors of Pain and Roderick Strong & Pete Dunne. What a lineup!
Finally on Sunday is WrestleMania 34 from the Mercedes-Benz Superdome. There will be 34 separate matches, including the WWE Championship between AJ Styles and Shinsuke Nakamura, the Andre the Giant Memorial Battle Royale, Tag Team Championships, the Women’s Battle Royale, the Intercontinental Championship and of course the big event, the Universal Championship between Brock Lesnar and Roman Reigns. Whew!
Supporting all the feeds coming in and out of CK30, we have Mike Sheehan on C49, Ron Ford on K26 and Nick Ray on one of our fiber encoding kits. Project manager Tommy Lopez is there to back up Logan, and Steve Hagerty’s all the way up at WWE headquarters in Stamford, Connecticut, to provide yet another backup path for WWE’s biggest show of the year. And let’s not forget Lance Banks and his crew at the PSSI International Teleport. Our team in Pittsburgh will be busy ingesting, monitoring and turning around multiple paths from New Orleans, as well!
As if that wasn’t enough, Zane, Mike, Nick and Joe Kelderhouse will stick around New Orleans for Raw on Monday and SmackDown on Tuesday. It’s going to be a marathon for our team to provide extensive, exclusive and exceptional service to one of our best customers, and we wouldn’t have it any other way!