Tennis champion Daniil Medvedev is competing in the US Open, but there’s a problem: he can’t watch any of the matches on his TV.
The No. 3-ranked player and 2021 US Open winner lamented in a post-match press conference on Monday that the ongoing dispute between Spectrum and the Walt Disney Company has forced him to find an alternative way to watch tennis, since the hotel he is staying at no longer carries ESPN.
“I can’t watch it on TV anymore.” Medvedev said About the tennis tournament. “I don’t know if this is legal or illegal, but I have to find a way because I can’t watch it on TV. I have internet, maybe that’s what you call it, pirate sites, so I watch tennis there… I have no other choice.
An ESPN spokesperson said Tuesday that they are working to enable Medvedev to access the ESPN+ app that broadcasts the matches.
Last week, Disney-owned channels like ESPN were pulled from 15 million prime-time Spectrum Cable subscribers, angering fans trying to watch tennis and college football matches. Charter, Spectrum’s parent company, said Disney “insisted on a traditional long-term deal with higher prices and limited packaging flexibility” and that Disney rejected the renewal proposal.
The cable provider asserts that the media group’s proposal would result in a significant cost increase for subscribers, who would also be saddled with channels they may not want to watch. This type of arrangement between channel owners and cable providers has been the norm for decades, but the advent of the streaming model has brought new pressures for both.
“We have successful deals with pay-TV providers of all types and sizes across the country, and the prices and terms we are seeking in this renewal are market-driven,” Disney said in a statement. “We are committed to reaching a mutually agreed-upon solution with the Charter and urge them to act.” With us to reduce the inconvenience for their customers.”
Disney Monday Launched a marketing campaign Saying this weekend was “frustrating for millions of Spectrum cable subscribers” it enticed people to sign up for a “Hulu + Live TV” package that gives them access to cable channels from Disney and ESPN+, where many games are broadcast live.
Ironically, NY1 — a local news channel available on Spectrum — aired its morning show from the US Open on Tuesday. However, its broadcasters did not acknowledge the carriage dispute or mention the irony that Spectrum subscribers couldn’t watch tennis on their cable service.
The US Open, which is being held in Queens, New York, continues until Sunday.
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