Spectrum Sports (New York)

Spectrum Sports was a network of regional sports cable television stations serving much of the upstate New York area. The stations, which were owned and operated by Charter Communications through its acquisition of Time Warner Cable in May 2016, were available in Rochester, Binghamton, Syracuse and Buffalo. The network broadcast a variety of local college and minor league sports games and was the de facto successor to the Buffalo-based Empire Sports Network. Unlike most regional sports networks, Spectrum Sports was never available on satellite television, nor was it available in areas of upstate that are served by companies other than Charter Spectrum/Time Warner Cable (such as Atlantic Broadband in Cattaraugus County or Zito Media in Cayuga County).

Spectrum Sports
Spectrum Sports logo
ClosedOctober 5, 2017
NetworkSpectrum Sports
Owned byCharter Communications
Picture format1080i (HDTV)
480i (SDTV)
CountryUnited States
LanguageAmerican English
Broadcast areaUpstate New York
HeadquartersWest Seneca, New York
Formerly called
  • Time Warner Sports (Syracuse)
  • Time Warner SportsNet (Buffalo and Rochester)
  • Time Warner Cable SportsNet (Buffalo and Rochester)
ReplacedEmpire Sports Network, Time Warner Cable SportsChannel
Replaced byMSG Western New York
Sister channel(s)Spectrum Sports (Ohio),
Spectrum Sports (Wisconsin),
Spectrum Sports (Kansas City),
Spectrum SportsNet (Los Angeles),
Spectrum Sports (Texas)


The network was formed in 2003 as budget cuts at the now-defunct Empire Sports Network, the area's previous regional sports network, forced severe cutbacks in the network's ability to cover sports outside of Buffalo. As a result, Syracuse University dropped Empire and instead signed a contract with Time Warner to carry their games on a separate channel, which became Time Warner Sports. Time Warner added some other sports events from local college and minor league sports teams to create the channel, which was initially only offered in the Syracuse area. In December 2006, Time Warner Sports expanded southward into the Binghamton market.

Also in December 2006, Time Warner SportsNet (TWSN) was established by Time Warner Cable in Rochester by acquiring rights to teams owned by the Rochester Sports Group: namely the Americans (ice hockey), Knighthawks (indoor lacrosse), Rattlers (outdoor lacrosse) and Raging Rhinos (soccer). Some of those teams had previously aired on other Time Warner channels, such as WRWB (the cable-only WB affiliate on channel 16 which has since has been sold to WHAM-TV) and Time Warner's overflow channel, channel 98. In June 2007, TWSN obtained the rights to televise the games of the Rochester Red Wings baseball team. TWSN also obtained the rights to air the Rochester Razorsharks basketball team, replays of the Rochester Raiders indoor football team, and some collegiate sports. The channel serves the entire Greater Rochester area, including the Finger Lakes region and Genesee County (Batavia).

Time Warner Cable established a Buffalo version of TWSN on November 19, 2007, on channel 13 on Buffalo-area TWC systems, operating out of the former Empire studios on Indian Church Road in West Seneca. The channel replaced former local-interest channel "Time Warner 13." TWSN hired former Empire host Jim Brinson in the spring of 2008; Brinson returned to Western New York after a stint as the morning co-anchor at KOHD in Bend, Oregon and hosts programs as well as handles play-by-play duties.

In March 2009, after parent company Time Warner spun off Time Warner Cable as a separate company, all three stations were correspondingly re-branded to begin with "Time Warner Cable" instead of just "Time Warner". The Buffalo and Rochester stations were rebranded as Time Warner Cable SportsChannel in fall 2012, adopting a logo similar to the newly established Time Warner Cable SportsNet in Los Angeles. Likewise, the channels were rebranded "Spectrum Sports" in September 2016 when Charter Communications purchased Time Warner Cable.

Spectrum Sports ceased operations on October 5, 2017. Locally originated programming mostly ended in June; the network waited until October to cease operations to fulfill its commitment to professional baseball coverage.[1] Existing programming on the network was merged into Spectrum News and migrated to online platforms.[2]


Spectrum Sports aired a wide variety of local sports programming. To suit local interests, and because of rights issues, some events are carried only on the Buffalo, Rochester and/or Syracuse feeds. Binghamton, Utica, and North Country viewers receive the Syracuse (Central New York) feed.

In addition to local sports (listed below), Time Warner Sports was also affiliated with ESPNEWS, which was usually carried during the midday period while that network was provided to regional sports networks for filler programming. Paid programming airs on the channel in the overnight hours.

Most first-choice Big East basketball and football games produced by ESPN Plus aired exclusively on Time Warner Cable SportsChannel in its broadcast territory, including any that involve Syracuse University. Additionally, Spectrum Sports rebroadcasts Syracuse University games televised by other ESPN networks. SNY (which is part-owned by Charter) generally only has rights to the same games in the New York City metropolitan area. However, it may have access to other Big East games to show across the full viewing area, particularly in basketball.

All stations

Buffalo only

Rochester only

Buffalo and Rochester only

Syracuse only

See also

  • Spectrum News, sister network
  • TW3, Albany sister station that shared some programming with the station
  • MSG Western New York, channel focused on Western New York joint programmed by MSG Networks and Pegula Sports and Entertainment.


  1. ^ Staff, Rochester Business Journal (5 October 2017). "Spectrum Sports channel ceases operations". rbj.net.
  2. ^ Pergament, Alan (August 23, 2017). "Spectrum going all in on Friday night high school football". The Buffalo News. Retrieved August 23, 2017.
  3. ^ Pergament, Alan (April 25, 2009). "Sports on the Air: Mayock has scheme for selection". The Buffalo News.
  4. ^ Pergament, Alan (March 31, 2011). "Sports on the Air: Yanks games fly to WNGS". Still Talkin TV. Retrieved April 4, 2013.

External links

2017 in American television

The following is a list of events affecting American television in 2017. Events listed include television show debuts, finales, and cancellations; channel launches, closures, and re-brandings; stations changing or adding their network affiliations; and information about controversies and carriage disputes.

Empire Sports Network

Empire Sports Network was an American regional sports network that was owned by the Adelphia Communications Corporation. The network was available on cable providers in much of upstate New York (stretching from Buffalo to Albany), as well as parts of northern Pennsylvania and eastern Ohio. The network ceased operations on March 7, 2005, in the midst of Adelphia's financial collapse and bankruptcy.

List of United States cable and satellite television channels

The following is a list of cable and satellite television networks broadcasting or receivable in the United States, organized by genre. Some cable systems use one or more cable channels for video on demand.

MSG Plus

MSG Plus (visually branded on-air as MSG+) is an American regional sports network owned by MSG Networks; it operates as a sister channel to MSG Network. The network serves the New York City metropolitan area, whose reach expands to cover the entire state of New York, Northern New Jersey, Southwestern Connecticut and Northeastern Pennsylvania; MSG Plus carries sports events from several of the New York area's professional sports franchises, as well as college sports events.

MSG Western New York

MSG Western New York (MSG WNY) is an American regional sports network that is a joint venture between MSG Networks and Pegula Sports and Entertainment. The channel (also on occasion credited as Pegula Sports Network or MSG Buffalo) is a sub-feed of MSG Network, with programming oriented towards the Western New York region, including coverage of the National Hockey League's Buffalo Sabres and the National Football League's Buffalo Bills. It replaced MSG Network on television providers in the Sabres' media market in 2016.

MSG Western New York is available on cable providers throughout Western New York. Most programming is available nationwide on satellite via DirecTV, with Sabres games requiring an NHL Center Ice subscription for out of market viewers; select programs are carried in Canada's Niagara Peninsula on a special channel set up for Bell TV subscribers that was founded in 2013.

Spectrum Sports

Spectrum Sports (abbreviated as SPECTSN), also known under the corporate names Spectrum Networks, or Charter Sports Regional Networks, is the collective name for a group of regional sports networks in the United States that are primarily owned and operated by Charter Communications through its acquisition of Time Warner Cable in May 2016. Charter also operates two other channels under the alternative name Spectrum SportsNet. The channels previously were branded as either Time Warner Cable Sports Channel or Time Warner Cable SportsNet.

Each of the networks carry regional broadcasts of sporting events from various professional, collegiate and high school sports teams (with broadcasts typically exclusive to each individual network, although some are shown on more than one SS network within a particular team's designated market area), along with regional and national sports discussion, documentary and analysis programs.

Depending on their individual team rights, some SS outlets maintain overflow feeds available via digital cable channels in their home markets, which may provide alternate programming when not used to carry game broadcasts that the main feed cannot carry due to scheduling conflicts. SS's business operations are based in New York City, New York and Los Angeles, California.

Spectrum Sports (Ohio)

Spectrum Sports is a defunct regional sports network serving Ohio and parts of northern Kentucky, southern Michigan and western Pennsylvania operated by Charter Communications through its acquisition of Time Warner Cable in May 2016. Broadcasting on Channel 311 and 1311 exclusively on Time Warner Cable systems.

Spectrum Sports (Wisconsin)

Spectrum Sports is a former regional sports network owned by Charter Communications through its acquisition of Time Warner Cable, including its Milwaukee and Eastern Wisconsin cable franchises, in May 2016. Broadcasting on Channel 32 exclusively on Charter Spectrum systems in the Milwaukee and Green Bay/Fox Cities areas, the channel launched in February 2007. This is not to be confused with WACY, Green Bay's actual broadcast Channel 32, which airs on Spectrum channel 83 on its northeastern Wisconsin systems.

The channel featured a mix of local sports roundtable discussion shows, UW-Milwaukee Panthers sporting events, programs featuring the former sports directors of several local television stations and newspapers, coaches' shows, high school sports, and other minor professional sports within the Milwaukee and Green Bay franchise areas of Spectrum. Until 2013 the network also aired Marquette Golden Eagles sports, including men's college basketball games from ESPN Plus, rebroadcasts of ESPN Marquette games, other Marquette sports, and archived Marquette sports programming; this was discontinued that year due to the new Big East Conference contract with Fox Sports 1 which will see some games sub-licensed to Fox Sports Wisconsin locally, and the athletic department considering taking their coach's shows online-only or discontinuing them altogether. The Horizon League also moved to a mix of airing their games through ESPN+ and Stadium, leaving the network without much college game programming.

On May 18, 2016, Charter completed its merger with Time Warner Cable, after an earlier attempt by Comcast to merge with Time Warner had failed the year before, placing the network and Time Warner Cable's Milwaukee operations under the control of Charter. As a result, it and the other ex-TWC RSNs rebranded under the umbrella of Spectrum Sports.

Original programming
Buffalo stations
Olean stations
Cable-only stations
Defunct stations
Television Stations viewable in the Greater Rochester, New York area
Local stations
Cable-only stations
Adjacent locals
Television stations viewable in Central New York, including Syracuse
Local stations
Cable-only stations
Occasional coverage
Historic teams
Historic venues
Other/ related

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