Friday, October 22, 2004

A one-man crusade

I can't take it much longer...I have to find out what's happening with Comcast SportsNet.

To the appropriate representative,

I am a subscriber to Dish Network, and am writing to inquire about the status of negotiations between your company and Dish Network. I have learned that both sides are currently in discussions to add your channel, Comcast SportsNet, available to Dish customers like myself.

As a Chicago Bulls fan, I find it disconcerting that the pre-season games have been aired and I have not been able to watch them. There are many fans in the Chicagoland area that do not have Comcast Cable, and like me have had to make due with recaps and boxscores for the games thus far. As a serious fan and amateur basketball writer [VERY Amateur :) - ed. ] these methods do not adequately compare to watching the game on television.

I certainly hope that you have set 11/6 (the first scheduled game to be broadcast on your station) as a deadline to *not only* get a deal done, but for the channel to be added and available to Sattelite packages. Otherwise, It will be an inexcusable sign of disrespect to basketball fans in Chicago. I do not consider it unreasonable to think that, if the Cubs season(instead of the Bulls), were about to start, that your operation would not be dragging its feet in a similar fashion. And while in the Cubs scenario there would admittedly be more public and media pressure to show the games, that does not mean that you can continue to prevent access to the Bulls without fear of complaints from their fans.

What is the current timetable for an agreement to be made, and subsequent addition of Comcast SportsNet to Dish Network satellite packages? I look forward to your response.


Matt Bernhardt

If you want to join in, email Comcast SportsNet Chicago at

Wednesday, October 20, 2004

If a Bulls game goes without the Bulls Blogger watching it, has it really been played?

Only the fantastic baseball going on lately has saved me from going crazy while not being able to watch these Bulls preseason games. I called both Dish Network and Comcast Sports Net about the lack of availability for dish subscribers, but they both offered next to nothing as far as info regarding when a resolution will be reached. I am still keeping up through box scores and the beat writers, but I want to *see* how these guys look. Although this could be a blessing in disguise so I can go into the season opener with a clean slate.

From what I've been reading though, there have been clear positives and negatives in the exhibition season. Tyson Chandler has proven that his back is holding up, with a pretty heavy workload in the preseason. Two other positives have been Luol Deng and Andres Nocioni, whose efforts translated into 18pts, 12reb for Deng and 20,12 for the man they call 'Chapu'. Coach Scott Skiles has been suggesting the possibility that these two will play together on the wings for stretches, despite their apparent lack of quickness on the defensive end. Rookie counterpart Ben Gordon has not played well however, shooting miserably from the field, and playing "tentatively". (I think writing about him last week jinked him) And while Eddy Curry has been solid, he hasn't lost his knack for scoring outbursts followed by long periods of disappearance.

And then there is the crowded PG situation. The 1 or 2 spots available to either Frank Williams, Jannero Pargo, and Chris Duhon (Mike Wilks was released today) has been a tougher decision than I had predicted earlier , mostly due to Duhon's play. While Skiles has noted that Pargo's minutes have declined due to him already knowing his credentials, Williams hasn't gotten the same reassurance. It is becoming more and more possible that Williams will be the one released, not the contract-less Duhon. I'm not so sure about this being a good thing given Williams' noted defensive prowess last season with the Knicks. But at least it has to make Dickie V. smile. Then again he's always smiling, even when ripping into Zarko Cabarkapa and his European ilk.

Along with Duhon, fellow camp-invitee Jared Reiner has also been turning some heads and can make the team if the Bulls follow through with their plans to buy-out Eddie Robinson, who despite his glowing words at the start of training camp has reverted into the immature griping we as Bulls fans have grown to expect. Another likely red-tag recipient (Gary Trent is unofficially gone) is Cezary Trebanski, further clearing the way for Reiner.

For yet another season preview, Yahoo! Sports' and ex-Bull Steve Kerr focuses his on Curry and Chandler's make-or-break year.

Tuesday, October 19, 2004