As expected, the Sharks have officially moved from CSN Bay Area to CSN California. The main reason given is that the Sharks will now have more room to air games and related programming without the congestion that was choking CSNBA the last several years. This is especially important from the HD delivery perspective, as the “Plus” channels meant to carry additional programming aren’t in HD.
Beneath the surface, the real motivation by Comcast is to conjure enough demand to force the other cable systems (Charter, Suddenlink) to carry CSNCA throughout the rest of Northern and Central California. The Sharks are asking shocked and angry consumers to call their cable systems to request the channel. We’ve seen this movie before, and we know how it usually ends.
While two networks will have their schedules freed up, there remain a few chances for conflicts. I studied the recently released, tentative 2010 A’s schedule, and compared it to the Kings’ and Sharks’ schedules. Here’s what I found:
- 10/1/09 – Sharks @ Avs, Opening Night, 7 p.m. on Versus against A’s @ M’s, 7:10 p.m. on CSNCA. No conflict.
- 10/3/09 – A’s-Angels @ 1:05, Sharks-Kings @ 7:30. No conflict.
- 4/6/10 – A’s-M’s TBD (7:05), Sharks-Flames @ 6:30, Spurs-Kings @ 7:00. Use of the Plus channel will be required.
- 4/8/10 – A’s-M’s TBD (12:35), Canucks-Sharks @ 7:30 on CSNCA-HD, Clippers-Kings @ 7:00. Probably no A’s conflict.
- 4/10/10 – A’s-Angels TBD, Coyotes-Sharks @ 7:30 on CSNCA-Plus, Mavs-Kings @ 7:00. If the Angels choose to make this one of their Saturday evening games, there will be a conflict. If it’s a day game, it’ll be blacked out because of Fox Saturday exclusivity.
- 4/12/10 – A’s-M’s TBD (7:05), Rockets-Kings @ 7:00. Use of the Plus channel will be required.
- 4/13/10 – A’s-M’s TBD (7:05), Kings-Lakers @ 7:30. Use of the Plus channel may be required if Kings game is not carried nationally.
Complicating things a bit is the fact that the Kings have not yet announced their broadcast schedule. It’s possible that some games may be carried by their OTA affiliate, if they have one this season.