Federal officials took down 16 websites today that they say illegally stream live sports and pay-per-view events — three days before the U.S.’ biggest live-TV event the Super Bowl. The government said he sites offered links to pirated telecasts of NFL, NBA and NHL games and wrestling events. A Michigan man has been charged for running a majority of the sites. The news came soon after New England Patriots quarterback said in an interview that he watched last year’s Super Bowl via a pirated web feed. “Last year I was rehabbing my foot in Costa Rica, watching the game on an illegal Super Bowl website,” he said. “And now I’m actually playing in the game. So, it’s pretty cool.” Brady and his Patriots face the New York Giants on Sunday in the NFL’s title game, which last year set an all-time TV record when it drew 111 million total viewers. NBC, which has the game this year, already has taken a step to stomp out piracy by announcing it will stream the Super Bowl live.
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