NBC has signed a three-year deal with U.S. Figure Skating to cover its championships.
That will include Saturday night prime time coverage of the ladies free skate, arguably the biggest draw of the championships.
The deal, which comprises 10 hours of coverage, also includes coverage of international competition, Skate America.
The deal extends through the 2010 Olympic Winter Games, which NBC also covers. As part of the agreement, the format of the championship has been remade for TV, with all finals on the weekends and aired live, though none scheduled opposite NFL football. In a conference call on the agreement, NBC Sports & Olympics Chairman Dick Ebersol called "almost like creating their own ‘final four’ of figure skating" (or should that be final quad?).