Suddenlink vs. The NFL Network - KCBD NewsChannel 11 Lubbock

11/27/07

Suddenlink vs. The NFL Network

Many fans are calling it the biggest game of the season, but if you're a Suddenlink customer you won't be able to watch the Dallas Cowboys face the Green Bay Packers Thursday.

Thursday's game is only available on the NFL Network, which is only available via satellite in this area. That's causing many to make plans to watch the game elsewhere or sign up for satellite. Meanwhile, many Lubbock establishments are gearing up to offer the big game to those without access.

"We've got 60 and on about 50 we'll have the game so from anywhere you watch you should be able to see the game," said Scott Stephenson, owner of Jake's Sports Bar.

He's talking about TV's and Thursday nights matchup between the Dallas Cowboys and Green Bay Packers. A dispute between Suddenlink Cable and the NFL Network is expected to fill his 400 person restaurant to capacity.

"It's bad for the fans but obviously it's good for us. We want everybody to be able to see the game so we're going to do all we can to provide it to them," said Stephenson.

Sports bars are trying to provide the game for fans because Suddenlink won't be.

"No response whatsoever. And we try to contact them. We would like to negotiate. We gave some options but unfortunately at this point in time the NFL Network has not contacted us," said Brian Borthwick, Suddenlink's Lubbock manager.

Suddenlink sent a letter to the NFL Network more than a week ago to work the dispute out. They outlined three options, two of which Suddenlink says would only financially benefit the NFL Network but as of Tuesday, no response.

"We want to put it out there where the sports fans can pay for it if they want to watch it. But we do not want to put that on every one of our customers," said Borthwick.

This isn't the cable provider's first dispute with the network. It happened last year with the Insight Bowl.

"We went through a similar situation last year, almost the exact same scenario. We were unable to reach them and they're not communicating with us and fortunately at that time we were able to strike a deal," said Borthwick.

Suddenlink is hopeful, but they don't expect a similar outcome.

"There's hope. And dealing in the past with the NFL Network you never know what might happen. They could give us a call at the last second," Borthwick added.

11/27/07
Where Can Lubbock Fans Cheer on the Cowboys?
This Thursday, the 10-1 Dallas Cowboys take on the 10-1 Green Bay Packers. The NFL Network will carry the game on Dish Network and DirecTV, however they have yet to reach an agreement with Suddenlink.

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