As people processed the news that star skier Lindsey Vonn would be forced to miss the Sochi Winter Olympics due to a knee injury, it was a quick transition from sympathy for her to a pressing question:
Will anybody watch the Olympics if she’s not there?
While NBC producers insist that their ratings will still be strong without her, they are looking to find another way to incorporate her into the event’s coverage, according to Deadline.
Jim Bell, the executive producer of NBC’s Olympics coverage, noted that Vonn likely will not be able to travel, but NBC is still in talks to get her involved somehow.
As for the ratings or a potential lack of interest without Vonn, Bell said the following:
There are plenty of established stars to go round, like Shaun White. And there are always the unknowns. No one knew the gymnasts where, but they became stars…”
Oh yea, sure, there are plenty of stars, like Shaun White, and…
As far as the substance of the coverage of the Sochi games, Vonn could likely chip in some fascinating insights in a quasi-analyst role. And as far as the eyeballs on the event, you better believe it will work if you tease an appearance by her for about three commercial breaks.
“Coming up next, it’s more speed skating, and later, stay tuned for a special appearance by Lindsey Vonn!”