Proceeds from the ads below will be donated to the Bob Wuesthoff scholarship fund.
Tuesday, January 22, 2013
Dodgers, Time Warner Form New Cable Network
The Dodgers have announced a deal with cable TV company Time Warner that will give the team its own network. I scarcely need to add how this will affect Fox, who would then be shut out of one of the principle reasons for its existence, but what truly scares me is the prospect that we could have an extended blackout period in non-Time Warner cable operators as everyone negotiates carriage fees. It could easily go that Vin Scully's voice is not heard in a significant number of homes on the eve of his retirement.
The addition of a new Dodgers network would bring the number of local sports channels in Los Angeles to six, the most in any major city in the United States. Besides Time Warner Cable's SportsNet and Deportes, and Fox's Prime Ticket and Fox Sports West, the Pac-12 Conference also has its own channel here. Fox Sports West carries Los Angeles Kings and Los Angeles Angels games.Ganis has been something of a go-to guy for quotes about the business of LA teams for the Times dating back, at least, to the McCourt acquisition of the Dodgers. And while he's been kind of a gloomy Gus about the crazy nature of these deals, I share his skepticism that this is going to go off without a hitch. "The Dodger agreement with Time Warner Cable may be a tipping point", the LAT piece reads, as far as the willingness of cable networks to pony up for a sports channel that is double what Fox Sports West is charging ($5/user*month for the proposed network).
"That's too many channels," said Marc Ganis, a sports industry consultant in Chicago. "I can't imagine that is sustainable on a long-term basis."