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For those who have been asking, here is the latest word on the whole Comcast/dish deal.  This comes from folks behind the scenes who should know.  It's less than official but it is reliable and the latest info.

--The Blazers' TV schedule will be coming out soon.  Comcast will carry every game that TNT doesn't.

--The new station will obviously be on Comcast cable systems and deals are being worked out with other carriers, including other cable systems and sattelite.

--Those deals don't depend on the Blazers, but on Comcast.  Comcast has similar deals in other cities and they've always been carried.  The unofficial-official message is "Don't worry...it will happen."

--That said, such deals are often an "11th-hour" affair and official word may not come until the network is launched on November 1st.

So basically we're going to have to wait for confirmation for a while but the idea is we can all relax.  Everybody should be able to see a lot of Blazer basketball this season either through cable or League Pass on the dish systems.

Let me reiterate something I said in the diaries about how League Pass works.  They re-broadcast local feeds and they don't care which team covers the game, they still show it.  So if Portland plays Minnesota and only Portland's broadcasting team covers the game they'll show the Portland feed. If only Minnesota's broadcasting team shows the game they'll show the Minnesota feed.   If both teams cover it they'll pick one or the other.  Either way the game gets shown.  The only way you miss a game on League Pass is if neither team broadcasts the game.  Given the upswing in Portland and the presence of Greg Oden and Brandon Roy that's probably going to be rare.  Even in a worst-case scenario where Comcast and the dishes can't come to a deal you'd still see plenty of Portland games that were broadcast by the opposition.  

Hope that clears things up a little.

--Dave (blazersub@yahoo.com)