Life as a Los Angeles Lakers fan has not been easy so far this season. They are 1-3, with their new star point guard Steve Nash recovering from a bone fracture in his leg. Multiple questions surround the team - will superstar center Dwight Howard reup? Has Kobe Bryant lost a step (or three)? Does head coach Mike Brown understand how basketball works?
But a bright light of good news is here. The Time Warner Cable SportsNet and Time Warner Cable Deportes networks (AKA The Lakers Network) has been picked up by an additional broadcast provider, Cox Communications. What that means is that Cox subscribers in Southern California will now have access to all the Lakers games their little heart’s desire.
Time Warner has already announced deals with Charter, Verizon Fios, Bright House Networks and AT&T U-Verse. They are apparently still negotiating with Dish Network, Comcast and DirecTV.
Basketball fans should watch this closely. This is going to disrupt competitive balance more than superstars joining other superstars to win championships has. The Lakers are on a different playing field than any other NBA team with this deal - which I expect means you'll see other mega market teams follow the lead of the Lakers and network-up.
Time Warner is asking for $3.95 per subscriber for the two channels. Fifty-seven of the 70 Lakers games it will carry this year will be exclusive to the networks.