The days of watching the Lakers on KCAL and Fox Sports will soon be over. Yesterday news broke of the Lakers signing a 20-year deal with cable giant Time Warner. Set to begin coverage in 2012, the deal with TWC will create two channels dedicated exclusively to Laker coverage including all non-nationally televised games.
Called a “game changing” deal, the agreement blazes a trail for other local teams such as the Dodgers and Angels to follow. Naturally there are some who have been left out of the in the cold. Namely the hundreds of thousands non-subscribers who have been watching the Lakers for decades on KCAL.
For this lifelong Laker fan it is a bitter-sweet moment. Finally the Lakers will have their own dedicated network which is long overdue. Still many of my memories are linked to Chick Hearn’s memorable voice announcing the “Los Angeles Lakers are on the air” for KCAL.
But this is how the game is played these days and the Lakers are one of the biggest draws in all of sports so it is only right. There has been no official word on how much the deal is worth but rumors of a $3-billion payday for the franchise has been rumored.
So enjoy watching the Lake Show on Fox and KCAL while you can. Come the 2012-13 season it will be 24-hour Laker coverage when the Time Warner deal kicks in.