MSG TV told viewers to ditch Time Warner Cable for other providers — saying fans may not be able to watch Knicks and Rangers games if a contract dispute isn't resolved by December 31.
MSG is owned by the Dolan family, who also own Cablevision, a rival of Time Warner cable.
MSG did not respond to inquiries about the dispute, but in a statement, Michael Bair, the president of MSG Media, said, "We have been attempting to negotiate a new agreement with Time Warner Cable for close to two years, and are simply asking them to pay fair and reasonable rates that are consistent with what other providers pay for our programming – nothing more."
Time Warner argued that MSG's idea of fair and reasonable was excessive.
"We were very close to an agreement for a 6.5 percent price increase," said Eric Mangan, a spokesman for Time Warner Cable. "However, about two weeks ago, MSG reneged on that offer and is now demanding a whopping 53 percent increase."
Mangan would not say what Time Warner currently pays MSG, nor whether Time Warner subscribers have been switching to other providers.
"They're upset, but I think they're really upset at MSG for charging a 53 percent increase."