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Caps Friday game moves to CSN HD

By now you've probably heard that the Caps' home game against the Thrashers on Friday has been moved off Comcast SportsNet + and onto Comcast SportsNet HD, with the Wizards game in Orlando shifting off CSN and onto CSN+. Maybe the reasoning is obvious, but just in case, I checked with a network spokesman. Turns out that it takes several days of advance time to make such a switch smoothly, and the network didn't want to take any chances that the Caps could be chasing a record 13th straight win while on the non-HD channel.

"The Capitals are on a remarkable winning streak, and due to overwhelming fan interest and the potential of Friday's game being very significant for the team, we moved the game to our primary channel so we can deliver it in HD," the spokesman wrote me. "Although they need another win to extend the streak to this weekend, we made the decision earlier this week in order to make the logistical arrangements required in a programming change like this."

The original lineup called for the Caps to have 12 games on CSN+ and the Wizards to have 14. With the switch, it changes to 11 and 15. No more complaints about hoops bias, ok? The Thrashers game was the last time the Caps were scheduled to be on CSN+ this season.

As for the persistent complaints (mostly from Caps fans) about CSN+ being unavailable for Verizon FiOS subscribers in some counties, those worries should be over. I'll quote from the FiOS release, which went out Tuesday afternoon:

Hey Wizards and Caps fans, we've heard your cries and we're answering. Starting [Tuesday], FiOS TV customers in Maryland and Virginia will have Comcast SportsNet Mid-Atlantic Plus (CSN+), the CSN MA overflow channel that gets you your Caps and Wizards games.

As many of you know, we've been offering these games on FiOS1, a local channel that's available in the D.C. metro area, but does not include parts of Maryland and Virginia. We've worked closely with Comcast on this, and found a solution that gives FiOS TV customers all of the Caps and Wizards games they want. We'll continue to offer the CSN+ content on FiOS1 in the D.C. metro area, and on channel 334 in the rest of the region.

Not enough good news yet? Ratings info from CSN coming soon. As always, let me note that The Washington Post has a business relationship with CSN, which allows Mike Wise to dress like a homeless person on television once a week.

By Dan Steinberg  |  February 3, 2010; 10:06 AM ET
Categories:  Caps , Media  
Save & Share:  Send E-mail   Facebook   Twitter   Digg   Yahoo Buzz   StumbleUpon   Technorati   Google Buzz   Previous: Caps hit 11 straight
Next: What happens if you check Alex Ovechkin


Wow, finally fan interest and TV reality have aligned. Next thing you know it will snow 2 inches in the DC area and schools will not close.

Posted by: LortonVA | February 3, 2010 10:17 AM | Report abuse

Why do they even put wizards games on the air at this point? Also I am wondering how long until DC50 or My20 works to gets the caps broadcast rights? With the way they are rolling, how much longer can a successful team stay on cable?

Posted by: alex35332 | February 3, 2010 10:33 AM | Report abuse

Posted by: alex35332 | February 3, 2010 10:33 AM

They put Wizards games on TV because some of us follow ALL of the home teams no matter where they are in the standings.

Posted by: bryc3 | February 3, 2010 10:36 AM | Report abuse

the caps will never go back to OTA broadcasts. they are going to be locked up by cable (CSN/MASN) for the same reason every other sports team is, the OTA chanels will earn more by showing reruns of friends or everyone hates chris. i cant think of any major sports team in any city that exists on local broadcast channels. when i lived in LA, the lakers were on channel 5 out there, but not sure if they still are.

hockey needs HD much more than basketball. glad they made the switch.

Posted by: dcsportsfan1 | February 3, 2010 10:49 AM | Report abuse

dcsportsfan nailed it

Posted by: jpfterps | February 3, 2010 10:55 AM | Report abuse

It's just as dcsportsfan said at 10:49am.

Nowadays there are more viewers available on cable than on secondary over-the-air television signals such as DC's Channels 20 or 50. So everybody involved makes more money by putting the games on CSN than on a broadcast station.

There are people who study such things who've predicted it's only a matter of time before events such as the Super Bowl or World Series migrate to cable-only as well. Some have speculated that if it weren't for network concerns about how regulators and Congress would react to taking the championship games off free broadcast TV that would have already happened. The NFL is known to have investigated taking the Super Bowl off the air and making it a pay-per-view event like a championship prize fight.

Posted by: greggwiggins | February 3, 2010 11:07 AM | Report abuse

Next step, make CSN+ HD. So MASN will have 2 HD channels so all Nats and O's games will be in HD. How is it possible that Comcast can carry 2 MASN HD channels but not 2 Comcast HD channels? That doesn't make any sense.

Posted by: hatrik22 | February 3, 2010 11:53 AM | Report abuse

When are the Caps game going to be broadcast in 3-D HD?

The Lakers are in 3-D HD.

Posted by: SA-Town | February 3, 2010 12:15 PM | Report abuse

Just thinking this morning, if the Nats get off to a good start... the Wiz would have fallen to 4th place in the area among Pro teams, only above the United. (no offense to DCU, but that is a smaller demographic). Maybe the Wiz are already there?

Posted by: 1of9000 | February 3, 2010 12:15 PM | Report abuse

Who wants to watch thug wannabes in HD anyway?

Posted by: hessone | February 3, 2010 12:47 PM | Report abuse

Posted by: alex35332 | February 3, 2010 10:33 AM

They put Wizards games on TV because some of us follow ALL of the home teams no matter where they are in the standings.

Posted by: bryc3 | February 3, 2010 10:36 AM

Amen. I have been a fan of the Capitals, Wizards, Redskins, and Orioles since I was a child and continue to be. Further, I have had season tickets to the Capitals, Redskins, and DC United. Love them all.

Posted by: croftonpost | February 3, 2010 1:20 PM | Report abuse

I wish 334 was made into a permanent channel for the entire region. I also wish there was a 534...

Posted by: sitruc | February 3, 2010 9:27 PM | Report abuse

They put Wizards games on TV because some of us follow ALL of the home teams no matter where they are in the standings.

Posted by: bryc3 | February 3, 2010 10:36 AM

Thank you so much!!! I watch them all, and love each team in D.C. Its been getting a little annoying with all of the "die-hard" Caps fans talking bad about all of the other teams in the area. Yes, they're down on their luck, but lest they forget the Caps were in the same position only 3 short seasons ago. Lets root for all of our Washington area teams!!! Skins, Caps, Wizards, Nats, D.C. United, (O's tood) heck even the Freedom, Mystics, and Kastles(of tennis)

Posted by: SkinsWizStangs | February 3, 2010 10:45 PM | Report abuse


Posted by: mdcapsfan | February 4, 2010 10:07 AM | Report abuse

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