Golden Knights Preseason Opener Sees Myriad Issues With AT&T SportsNet Rocky Mountain
AT&T SportsNet Rocky Mountain became available in Las Vegas on Sunday, but as subscribers of the DirecTV Choice package "tried to tune in" to the Golden Knights preseason opener, they were "shown a message that the signal required subscribing to DirecTV’s premium sports service," according to Steve Carp of the LAS VEGAS REVIEW-JOURNAL. DirecTV customers were "eventually able to watch the game, but only after they rebooted their home system" to get the proper signal. Meanwhile, CenturyLink subscribers in Southern Nevada who were supposed to get the RSN via Prism TV "did not have it." A CenturyLink spokesperson said that the problem were "technical issues with AT&T SportsNet, not a rights issue." The RSN's next Golden Knights telecast is Sept. 26. Cox Communications has "been involved in negotiations with AT&T" to get the RSN on its system and thought it "found a loophole as the Knights-Canucks game was televised on the NHL Network, which is on Cox’s system on its premium sports tier." But after "making an announcement Sunday morning that the game would be on, Cox had to backtrack after the NHL decided to black out the telecast in Southern Nevada just prior to the opening face-off." The replay of the game yesterday on NHL Net also was "blacked out." Golden Knights Owner Bill Foley said that he is "aware of the fans’ discontent over the TV issue" and "preached patience." Foley said, "It’s going to come together. I truly believe the fans of Las Vegas will get to watch their team play" (LAS VEGAS REVIEW-JOURNAL, 9/19).
LET'S MAKE A DEAL: Foley said that the philosophy of a deal with AT&T SportsNet Rocky Mountain was "based on the strategy of providing TV coverage to the western states -- not just the Las Vegas market." Golden Knights President Kerry Bubolz said that the team is "supportive" of both the RSN and Cox "coming together to reach a broadcast distribution deal before the Golden Knights start their season Oct. 6" (LVSPORTSBIZ.com, 9/18).