We are two weeks out from the 2016 Olympia and it is still a mystery if the show will be live streamed on the Internet or not. This was the same situation a year ago when the promoters announced that FLEX Online.com would host the free live stream and that it would be “brought to you by” Amazon Sports. So could history repeat itself?
The Olympia had been hosted on Bodybuilding.com for a number of years before last year when FLEX, the magazine owned by AMI (the company that promotes the show), streamed it on their official website.
Could there possibly be a hold up regarding the Amazon connection? The online shopping giant surely had a financial hand in the 2015 broadcast and it’s anyone’s guess if they view the sport of bodybuilding as something that gave them a return on their investment.
The last time that a mainstream company was involved with the Olympia was a disaster, so hopefully that was not the case with Amazon. In 2014, NBC Sports Network was scheduled to broadcast two 90-minute specials from footage taken during Olympia Weekend, one that celebrated the golden anniversary of bodybuilding’s most prestigious event. But they are still on the shelf and were never aired in their scheduled time slots, with nary an explanation from either AMI or NBCSN.
If FLEX does not stream the show, then possibly Digital Muscle will. The bodybuilding media outlet owned by Dan Solomon streamed the Arnold Classic in March and reviews were very positive, unlike the ones from both the Bodybuilding.com and FLEX broadcasts.
It would be a big disappointment if what is known as the Super Bowl of the bodybuilding industry is not live streamed. Without a television broadcast, the fans have to either watch the show live in person or hope that it is online. Since the former is not always possible, the latter needs to be available.
MuscleSport Magazine reached out to Robin Chang from AMI/FLEX for a comment and have not received a reply as of this writing.