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Ch.2's Holmes also has new deal; The real Rick Azar upset over comment

On Thursday, I told you that John Beard signed a new deal to remain at Channel 2 as “Daybreak” co-anchor through August of 2017.

It turns out that his co-anchor, Melissa Holmes, also has a relatively new deal.

Holmes, who is married to Buffalo News sportswriter Jay Skurski, agreed in May to a new four-year deal that takes her through May of 2019.

“Co-anchoring ‘Daybreak’ has truly been my dream job for the past 3 years and I’m thrilled that I can continue to live that dream for at least the next 4 years,” said Holmes. “It’s not easy to wake up at 2:15 every morning- especially after a hectic day with a baby at home - but I’m lucky to go to a job I love, surrounded by a great 'Daybreak' team.”

“Daybreak” has dominated the local morning news competition for years and hasn’t missed a beat since meteorologist Andy Parker left for Channel 7 and was replaced by Maria Genero.

July sweeps update: With a week left in the July sweeps, Channel 4 is much more competitive with first-place Channel 2 at 6 a.m. and from 5 p.m. through 6:30 p.m. than it was a year ago. It is even ahead at 6 p.m. by a slim margin. Channel 2 had a slim lead a year ago. Interestingly, combined news viewership from 5 p.m. through 6 p.m. is up significantly from a year ago. Yes, even third-place Channel 7 is showing gains. The good news for Channel 2 remains at 11 p.m., where it is tied with Channel 4 in the time slot after losing by more than a point a year ago. Of course, July is the least important to advertisers of the four sweeps periods.

Former Channel 7 sports anchor Rick Azar was upset about a comment attributed to him online below the Buffalo News obituary of Van Miller.

When I read the comment, it sure didn’t sound like it came from Azar so I reached out to him.

Azar wants everyone who read the comment to know it didn’t come from him.

The comment and others from someone calling himself Rick Azar have since been deleted.

Buffalo State College graduate Tom Calderone’s departure Tuesday as president of VH1 after seven years certainly seemed sudden. Buffalo News reporter Tim O’Shei interviewed him at length in his New York City office on Monday, a day before the announcement that he was leaving VH1. O’Shei said Calderone didn’t mention anything about leaving and had in fact suggested a week later as an alternative date for the interview.

Reality Show Alert: Niagara University senior Cody Candelario, who is majoring in luxury hospitality operations, is one of four contestants featured at 10 p.m. Sunday on the Food Network’s “Cutthroat Kitchen.”

According to a Niagara press release, Candelario, 22, is from Healdsburg Calif., became interested in cooking around the sixth grade and currently is working in Italy through the university.

In “Cutthroat Kitchen,” four chefs are given $25,000 each. They can spend it on supplies or to sabotage the three other competitors.

According to the Food Network, Sunday's episode is titled "I Know Who Kilt Me." Here is the network's brief summary: "One chef gets hassled by haggis. Then a pair of chopsticks become a huge obstacle for someone. Finally a chef finds that they're not so sweet on key lime pie."

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