It’s been exactly one week since the Los Angeles Dodgers officially launched their new network SportsNet LA and only customers with Time Warner Cable and Bright House Networks in Bakersfield can view the channel.
Negotiations are ongoing with other cable providers including DirecTV, AT&T U-Verse, Cox and Verizon FiOS, but one provider is unlikely to carry the channel. According to Joe Flint of the LA Times, Dish Network executive vice president David Shull discussed their stance:
Satellite broadcaster Dish Network isn’t interested in playing ball with the Dodgers.
In an interview, Dish executive vice president David Shull said the majority of Dish’s Los Angeles area customers don’t care about getting SportsNet LA, the new Dodger-owned pay-TV channel that launched last month.
Dish also doesn’t carry the Lakers channel, Time Warner Cable SportsNet, but did say that he’d be interested in offering the channels a la carte. However, Time Warner Cable isn’t likely to give that option to cable distributors as Opening Day for the Dodgers is less than three weeks away in Australia.
SportsNet LA is offering unprecedented coverage of the Dodgers this season, broadcasting all 19 Spring Training games and 150 regular season games. Weekly shows include “Backstage: Dodgers”, “Connected With….” and “Talkin Blue” as well as pre and post game coverage all season long.
While Dish wouldn’t disclose how many customers it has in the LA area, it’s estimated there are 500,000 people that have it as their provider. Shull discussed how negotiations have been and doesn’t believe it’s fair for all customers to pay for both channels:
They are hanging on to an old model, Shull said, adding that it would not be fair to the majority of Dish subscribers to jam these two expensive channels down their throats.
For Dish customers and others who have providers that don’t have the channel, make sure to let them know by going to IneedmyDodgers.com as time is ticking before the regular season starts.
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