TWC sees Lakers RSN ratings crater 25%, still no DirecTV deal for Dodgers RSN

With its L.A. Dodgers-focused regional sports network, SportsNet LA, on the cusp of its first birthday, and the team's first spring-training game set for March 4, Time Warner Cable (NYSE: TWC) appears to be no closer to making a crucial carriage deal with DirecTV (NASDAQ: DTV) that would greatly expand the RSN's limited reach.

But as sports fans and columnists continue to rage at the fact that a premiere Major League Baseball team is only accessible to about third of the Southern California television market, the other shoe has apparently dropped.

Ratings for Los Angeles Lakers games on TWC SportsNet, exclusive home to the NBA team, are down 25 percent from last season, with the team allegedly trying to lose games in order to obtain a higher-seeded selection in the upcoming player draft.

With the season past its midway point, Lakers games are averaging a meager 1.95 audience rating on SportsNet. That's on pace to be worse than the 2.11 ratings average Nielsen reported for the channel in 2013-14, its first in operation.

Neither the team nor the cable company are commenting as to whether their deal has provisions that will allow TWC to exit the pact if the Lakers endure a prolonged drought of success.

TWC is paying the Lakers about $3 billion over 20 years to secure exclusive TV rights to the team's games. It's paying the Dodgers $8.35 billion over 25 years for similar rights.

For more:
- read this Los Angeles Times story
- read this Los Angeles Daily News story

Related links:
New MLB commissioner won't intervene in TWC SportsNet LA impasse
Rumor mill: TWC looking to launch L.A. Clippers-based RSN
Time Warner Cable SportsNet LA fiasco may turn tide on spiraling RSN costs
TWC puts Dodgers channel on broadcast for pennant stretch drive
Playing the SportsNet LA blame game: Include the fans and the team, too

Sponsored by Dell Technologies

Whitepaper: How to Elevate Your Content Delivery Workflows With Dell EMC PowerScale

Learn how Dell EMC PowerScale helps meet surging viewer demand while reducing costs with a single centralized platform for the ingest, processing, and delivery of the content your viewers love.

Suggested Articles

WarnerMedia scored a key HBO Max distribution deal with Comcast just as it launched in May. Nearly six months later, there still isn’t an app.

Comcast is planning new data caps and video service price increases for its subscribers in 2021.

The Apple TV remote is an often reviled peripheral device. Universal Electronics has taken it upon itself to create a different option.