TV deal may benefit Avs fans

Games 3, 4 might be aired for local viewers

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— If everything works out the way AT&T Cable Services General Manager Tom Cotton wants it to, local subscribers will be able to watch all of the Avalanche-Canucks series at home on their own television sets.

However, on Wednesday he said it will all depend on working out a deal with KDTV (UPN Channel 20) out of Denver.

"They've been very cooperative the past few years, but I haven't talked to them about this year," Cotton said.

The first two games of the series will be carried on ESPN2 and FOX Sports Net. The first game will be played tonight at 8 p.m.

However, things will not be as easy for Games 3 and 4, which will be played on the road in Vancouver.

The Denver station has the rights for the away games and they will not be carried on ESPN2 or FOX.

That means Cotton and AT&T will have to pay the price to have the games uplinked and that's only if KDTV agrees to do it.

Cotton said there will be no problems for the rest of the games. ESPN2 will carry Games 5 and 7 if they are played. FOX is scheduled to air Game 6 if needed.

Cotton was not sure how the television coverage will work if the Avalanche advance to the second round.

However, he said most of the problems with getting the games come in the early rounds. As the teams advance more and more of the action is covered by the major sports networks such as ESPN2 and FOX.

Cotton said he tried to get a hold of a representative at KDTV on Wednesday. Cotton said the Denver station was trying to arrange the uplink to get the games to the Steamboat-Craig area, but nothing was definite as of Wednesday evening.

"I'm just hoping we can work out a deal to get the games here in Steamboat," Cotton said.

Steamboat and Craig will be the two main areas affected by the lack of coverage. KDTV is currently available along the entire Interstate 70 corridor.

Cotton said he should know if he will get the games in the next few days. If he does, local hockey fans should tune into Channel 10 for the game.

However, if the games are not available on cable, local Avalanche fans can also get the games via satellite or by hitting the local bars that provide satellite to their customers.

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