FOX INC. chairman Barry Diller says he is willing "to take ABC's current contract for NFL Monday Night Football and sign it" in order to carry the games on his new Fox Broadcasting Co. network. Fox-owned WNYW / 5 in New York is among 99 stations carrying Fox programing, which currently consists only of "The Late Show with Joan Rivers." The network plans to add weekend prime-time shows this spring.
ABC, CBS and NBC are ending a five-year $2.1 billion contract with the National Football League amid reports that they lost a collective $75 million in 1985. ABC Sports President Dennis Swanson has said that, although he would not put dollar figures on ABC's losses on prime-time football, they were in "the significant millions" in both '85 and '86. Swanson said ABC wants to retain Monday night games, but "we can't subsidize pro football."