Dear Sports Illustrated: Any Prediction as to When CSN Houston Will Get on Our TVs?
The Houston Astros are on the cover of this week's Sports Illustrated. The photo's not a joke; neither is the story. The story goes into the radical rebuild of the club and the magazine makes the bold prediction that the Astros will win the 2017 World Series. And who knows, if the Astros really get lucky, that whole CSN Houston bankruptcy deal might actually be settled by then.
The World Series is nice and everything, but damn it, I want to watch the games on TV.
The parties returned to Judge Marvin Isgur's bankruptcy court Monday. The Astros argued to have the fraud suit they filed against Drayton McLane and Comcast returned to state court. McLane and Comcast wanted Isgur to keep the case in the Federal court system. There was no decision made, and the parties, as with most matters, were left hanging, waiting for somebody to come along and bail them all out.
And guess what, they're all returning to Isgur's courtroom next week to discuss the so-called reorganization plan. I'm pretty sure the Astros won't eagerly go along with anything offered up because Judge Lynn Hughes has yet to rule on the Astros' appeal of the order putting the network into bankruptcy. One would think that Hughes would've issued a ruling by now -- the appeal was filed back in March, he's heard arguments and had a couple of mediation sessions so he should be familiar with all the details, but then again, that's the thing about Federal district court judges; they'll slap you down should you miss a deadline, but they move to a clock that's got nothing to do with reality.
The bankruptcy plan won't be the only issue before Isgur next week. There's an entity known as enTouch Systems, Inc. that has requested the relief of the court. enTouch, believe it or not, is a small cable TV provider that was enough of a sucker to sign up to distribute CSN Houston when it hit the air. The company has decided it's not too happy with the deal it was suckered into -- company execs claim to be paying much, much more to distribute the network than Comcast is paying. The contract between the company and CSN Houston also supposedly contains a clause allowing enTouch to bail out of the network should it go into bankruptcy. The company has attempted to exercise this right, but CSN Houston has failed to comply with the contract.
"It's very difficult when a company like Comcast is playing on both sides of the fence and getting a highly discounted rate," J. Findley, president and CEO of enTouch, told the Chronicle. "It's not a level playing field."