D.C. United, CSN Agree to 3-Year TV Deal

April 4, 2013

D.C. United fans have an outlet to watch their team this season, although the setup is not as all-encompassing as they might have hoped.

D.C. United and Comcast SportsNet announced a three-year television rights agreement Thursday, but a number of dates on the 2013 schedule remain untelevised.

The first game of the new CSN deal isn’t until May 8, when D.C. United hosts the Houston Dynamo. Friday night’s game at Sporting Kansas City will be available only on the pay-per-view MLS Live or MLS Direct Kick packages, and the same goes for April 13’s showdown at RFK Stadium against the rival New York Red Bulls.

Each year of the new deal includes a 16-game minimum, all available in high definition, with the likelihood that more games will be added as the network’s programming becomes more clear.

A major reason the local broadcasts won’t begin for another month is because the programming involving the Capitals and Wizards presents a conflict. Those two teams, and the Redskins, account for scheduling in September and beyond, which is why the last scheduled D.C. United game on CSN as of now is Sept. 15.

“United is a dynamic brand that delivers a tremendous amount of exciting content to our network’s lineup,” CSN president Rebecca Schulte said in a statement. “We are proud to continue in our longtime position as the official sports network of United and provide their passionate fans with the most comprehensive Black-and-Red coverage.”

Up Next for United

Friday, 8:30 p.m., at Kansas City

Sporting Kansas City is led by University of Maryland product Graham Zusi and fellow U.S. internationals Benny Feilhaber and Matt Besler. United will be without second-year winger Nick DeLeon, who will miss about five more weeks with a hamstring strain that he suffered in United’s last match. The rest of the lineup should be well-rested, with the team coming off a bye week and not having played since a 2-1 loss to Columbus on March 23.

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