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Two big firsts coming up for the Bee this week... For the first time in the 13 years that ESPN has provided live coverage of the Scripps National Spelling Bee Finals, it will be aired in HD. The ESPN coverage in 720p from Washington, D.C., starts at noon EDT June 1. And also for the first time, Thursday's final championship rounds will be aired live in primetime on ABC at 8 p.m. EDT.

ESPN SportsCenter anchor Chris McKendrey will return as host, with former Bee finalist Paul Loeffler providing color commentary. "Good Morning America" co-host Robin Roberts will host the primetime contest on ABC.

The last three years of final-word winners included "p-o-c-o-c-u-r-a-n-t-e" (indifferent) in 2003, followed in 2004 by ""a-u-t-o-c-h-t-h-o-n-o-u-s" (indigenous), and last year the musical term "a-p-p-o-g-g-i-a-t-u-r-a" (an embellishing note) scored as the final word winner.