Cox Cable, DirecTV still trying to reach deal for Lakers channel
Cox Cable and DirecTV are still trying to reach an agreement to carry Time Warner Cable’s new sports channel SportsNet in time for the outlet’s first Lakers telecast Wednesday night.
Time Warner Cable’s SportsNet, which launched Oct. 1, is the new TV home for the Lakers and will be the only channel fans can watch 57 of the team’s 82 regular-season games. Other games will be available on national outlets including Tuesday night’s season opener against Dallas on TNT.
Last week, Time Warner Cable struck distribution deals for SportsNet and the Spanish-language service Deportes with Charter Communications, AT&T; U-Verse and Verizon Fios. Besides Cox and DirecTV, the other big holdout is Dish Network.
Between them, Cox and DirecTV have almost 3 million subscribers in Southern California. Dish has an additional 850,000. Time Warner Cable has about 2.3 million subscribers.
At issue is the price for SportsNet and Deportes. Time Warner Cable is seeking as much as $3.95 per-subscriber per-month for the networks, which come as a package. Besides the Lakers, Time Warner Cable has the TV rights to the Los Angles Galaxy soccer team. It will also aggressively go after the Dodgers, whose contract with Fox’s Prime Ticket network expires at the end of next season.
Cox and DirecTV said they are continuing negotiations with Time Warner Cable but neither would say if they were optimistic an agreement could be reached before the start of Wednesday night’s game between the Lakers and the Portland Trail Blazers. Dish did not immediately respond to a request for comment.
Follow Joe Flint on Twitter @JBFlint.
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