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Sabre Fans Should Root for Knicks

NEW YORK, NY - APRIL 24:  Carmelo Anthony #7 o...

Carmelo Anthony (7)

Many local Time Warner Cable subscribers may not care whether New York Knicks games are carried here on MSG, but Carmelo Anthony’s team may be the key to how long the verbal battle between TWC and the sports network that carries Buffalo Sabres games continues as a Jan. 1 contract deadline nears.

Tuesday’s New York Times featured almost a half-page ad with a picture of Anthony, the former Syracuse star, with the headline: “Hallelujah NYC It’s Game Time.”

Down below, the ad warned that TWC subscribers (in NYC) could lose MSG and MSG Plus on Jan. 1.

A TWC spokesman in Buffalo confirmed last week that the cable operator doesn’t make deals with only one area. In other words, MSG won’t make a deal in Buffalo to carry the Sabres separate from a deal in New York City to carry the Knicks and New York Rangers.

The spokesman confirmed that stance today (Friday) after a confusing story carried online by the Buffalo News may have left the erroneous impression that separate deals could be worked out in Buffalo and New York City.

Since New York is the largest TV market in the country and has significantly more TWC subscribers than Buffalo, it shouldn’t be hard to realize what area has the most leverage in this battle.

The point is protesting Sabre fans can hold their breath, since the New York market is much more important to MSG and not just because it is a much bigger market.

Cablevision, which owns MSG, also owns the Knicks and the Rangers. For that reason, you might expect it would want to reach a compromise with TWC to keep the Knicks games on.

Anthony was the hero of the Knicks’ 106-104 opening game victory over the Boston Celtics on Christmas Day. If he continues to play well and the Knicks continue to win, the pressure to keep the games on TWC presumably would increase on both sides.

So Sabre fans would be wise to root for Anthony and the Knicks to help end this standoff.

pergament@msn.com

 

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6 responses to "Sabre Fans Should Root for Knicks"

  1. Gman says:

    Good call,Alan. This dispute is really out of the subscribers hands. The way the Sabres have been playing, I thought they may be in jeopardy of being cancelled anyway by MSG due to low ratings( or lack of interest round here) Have a great and prosperous New Year!

  2. Pergy's friend says:

    Well if they don’t renew the deal, I see a lot of Sabres fans switching to Direct TV on Jan 2.

    • I think more likely is that, since the radio guys are already on the TV, that they just switch over to WGR or online streaming for their *free* hockey broadcasts. Especially those that dumped Dish for TW just because of this very issue. It’ll put a lot of pressure on Pegula and Black to dump MSG (which they’ve stood by so far) for a more responsive local partner (e.g. TWCS or, dare I say WBBZ, although Arno probably doesn’t have the money for that yet). Quinn locked the Sabres into MSG through 2016, but if push came to shove, I’m sure that the deal could be reviewed, especially with a little arm-twisting (and Senator Schumer has shown in the past that he’s willing to do that sort of thing).

  3. Joe says:

    In Aug. I dumped my cable after 20 years and went to Direct TV. It was the smartest move I made in years!!! No more BS when it comes to my sports. The ad they run IS TRUE. If you LOVE sports the only way to go is Direct TV. Plus you do save lots of $$$ on your bill.

    • Gman says:

      You do not save with Directv. Good sports coverage if you want to pay a fortune for your Tv bill. Just the facts,please?

      • Joe says:

        The FACT is that I am only paying $35.00 a month. Yes, it does go up $20.00 next year. But that is still $25.00 less than what I use to pay for cable. And I get so many more sports channels that Time Warner made me pay extra for. Along with all the MSG channels. So I was able to watch the Sabres Tuesday nite.

        You people that have been brain washed by Time Warner really have no clue. If you like movies, etc, then yes. Stay with what you have. But if you love sports like I do Direct TV is the best way to go. The FACT is that for sports you really do get the most bang for your buck with Direct TV.

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