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U of L, UK Blacked Out On DISH Network For Friday's Games

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LOUISVILLE, Ky. (The Courier-Journal) -- Cats and Cards fans who subscribe to Dish Network in Louisville will be experiencing a blackout at the worst possible time during the NCAA tournament.

According to the Courier-Journal, Hearst Television Inc. — the parent company of WLKY, the CBS affiliate in Louisville — blacked out DISH Network in 26 markets across 30 states as a result of ongoing contract negotiations. An agreement had not been reached as of Thursday morning.

Both Louisville and Kentucky are scheduled to play their Round of 64 games in Indianapolis on CBS Friday.

 A letter, which was addressed to DISH subscribers from Hearst Television president Jordan Wertlieb, was posted on WLKY's website on Tuesday. Wertlieb said the company expects the negotiations to be a "long-term impasse."

"As we have said to DISH all along, we remain ready and willing to conclude a deal promptly. In contrast, DISH has said that they’re available day and night to reach an agreement, and yet they’ve refused to modify their completely off-market terms in any meaningful way. Given the foregoing and DISH’s extensive history of outages, we suspect they will employ any scheme that serves to delay meaningful discussions. While Hearst Television can’t force DISH to negotiate, we can assure you that we remain committed to reaching a fair deal, and we will work each and every day to make that happen."

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