Hurricanes, FS Carolinas sign broadcast contract extension

Jeff Skinner's smiling face will grace your television more often beginning in 2013. (Photo by Jamie Kellner)

After years of frustrating blackouts and non-televised games requiring a visit to a local bar or a friend's house with Center Ice, the end is in sight.

Beginning with the 2013-14 season, the team announced today, all Hurricanes games, both home and away, will be televised in some fashion. Any games not picked up nationally by either NBC or NBC Sports Network will be televised on Fox Sports Carolinas in HD, the first time since the team moved to North Carolina that all games will be available on basic cable or satellite packages.

The only bad news? The current agreement for FS Carolinas to televise 65 games per season runs through 2012-13, so you face one more year of limited availability. After that, though, the Canes will join the majority of NHL teams in broadcasting all 82 of their games on one channel or another.

About the only casualty of this new agreement is the charming CanesVisionHD feed with Chuck Kaiton's commentary which appeared at times on Center Ice when no other television feed was available. Aside from that, though, this agreement is a long-overdue recognition of the central place Hurricanes hockey has in FS Carolinas' programming, and the days will soon be over where a Canes game is preempted for women's JV water polo.

The release from the team follows the jump.

HURRICANES, FOX SPORTS CAROLINAS REACH NEW, MULTI-YEAR TELEVISION RIGHTS DEAL

Longtime rights holders to begin carrying all team games in 2013-14

RALEIGH, NC – Peter Karmanos, Jr., Owner and Chief Executive Officer of the National Hockey League’s Carolina Hurricanes, today announced that the team has reached a new, multi-year agreement with its local television rights holder, FOX Sports Carolinas. Beginning with the 2013-14 season, FOX Sports Carolinas will televise all Hurricanes regular-season and playoff games not carried by NHL national rights holders.

"We are very pleased to continue to partner with FOX Sports Carolinas as the Hurricanes’ television rights holder," said Karmanos. "This new deal is an important piece for the growth of our business, and it’s a major win for fans who will get to see every game on local television."

Under the deal, FOX Sports Carolinas will continue to produce pre- and post-game shows surrounding every Hurricanes game, and will continue broadcasting all games in high definition. The current deal, which calls for 65 of the team’s regular-season games to be televised, will remain in effect for 2012-13.

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