Nine’s Sydney news boss Max Uechtritz left the network on Friday, as did the floundering game show The Price is Right.
Both were dumped in an effort to boost Nine’s struggling Sydney 6pm
News and keep Seven News a distant second in Melbourne and Brisbane.

The
axings will cost money, with Uechtritz in line for a payout of up to $1
million. It will also be expensive to develop a replacement for The Price is Right, but the stakes are high in the 5:30pm timeslot leading into the news. The Price is Right was being easily beaten by Seven’s Deal or No Deal with Andrew O’Keeffe.

Uechtritz
was a Gyngell/John Alexander appointment, part of a plan to snaffle
Juanita Phillips from the ABC News in Sydney. The statement announcing
his departure on Friday was a Nine classic: no mention of who he was at
the Network, just his name, and the hide of Chisholm daring to speak on
behalf of Uechtritz’s “many friends and colleagues.”

After the
bagging Max gave Chisholm and his hatchet man, Ian Audsley, in the Nine
Sydney Newsroom on Thursday evening, Chisholm certainly wasn’t speaking
for Max’s friends and colleagues.

Peter Fray

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