NBA, NHL Back Fox In Dish Dispute
Washington, D.C. (October 11,
Both the NBA and NHL have apparently sided with Fox Networks in
its programming fee fight with satcaster Dish Network.
On October 1, Dish Network
was forced to drop the Fox-owned FX, National Geographic Channel
and 19 Fox regional sports networks because it couldn't reach a
new programming agreement with Fox.
The Fox regional sports networks air pre-season and regular
season games from the professional sports leagues. And now the
NBA and NHL are running stories at league-sponsored web sites (NBA.com
and NHL.com) saying that Dish has refused to reach a "fair
agreement" with Fox Networks.
Additionally, the stories warn viewers that if they have Dish,
they will not be able to watch the new seasons of the NBA and
For instance, at the NHL site for the Florida Panthers, a story
midnight on Oct. 1, DISH Network dropped FOX Sports Florida (and
all FSN networks throughout the United States) because it
refused to reach a fair agreement with FOX to carry the network.
As a result, Panthers fans that have DISH will probably miss
this Sunday’s season opener at Edmonton, as well as the home
opener vs. Tampa Bay on Oct. 16."
At the NHL's Los Angeles Kings' site, a story actually urges
Dish subscribers to seek another TV provider:
"Fortunately, there are alternatives, as Fox Sports West
(which broadcasts the Kings' games) is offered by a number of
other local distributors in our area." the Kings site says. "As
you can imagine, DISH’s competitors are ready, willing and able
to make great offers to DISH customers that don’t want to miss
their Kings games."
The NBA site for the Los Angeles Clippers also urges Dish
subscribers to switch providers.
It appears that Fox has persuaded the leagues to help them
pressure Dish to sign a new agreement ASAP.
Fox says it's asking for the market rate for FX, National
Geographic and the regional sports channels, but Dish has called
Fox's request "outrageous."
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