August 24, 2009
Fight fans could be in for a rough break come August 31 as DirecTV may make WEC and lots of additional sports programming unavailable. The satellite giant is considering dumping the network that also carries NHL, Tour de France plus Pac-10 and Mountain West college football. A DirecTV official says the network simply isn't worth the fee when it comes to passing it along to the consumer:
"Versus' overall ratings are poor and have not increased nearly enough to justify what we're paying them, let alone the significant increase they're asking for," Robert Mercer, director of public relations for DirecTV told the L.A. Times. "It is a significant rate hike and the deal is discriminatory because Versus is not offering the same package options as other distributors."
Could it be big business is waging another with fans annd viewers serving as the true victim? Versus is owned by Comcast, the cable giant, which is a direct competitor to the nation's biggest satellite provider. According to the L.A. Times, On DirecTV, Versus ranks 61st among 74 English-advertising supported cable networks.
It's important to note WEC's next card is days after the possible DirecTV dumping on September 2 in Youngstown.
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