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FS Tennessee is latest to sign with Predators…

Players aren’t the only people signing contracts this summer. The television broadcast partner of the Nashville Predators, FOX Sports Tennessee, has signed a new four year deal with the team.

The deal calls for 60 televised games this coming season, 65 games in the 2011-12 and 2012-13 seasons and then a whopping 70 games in the final year of the contract. With 60 games being televised this season, it marks the first time the Predators will have had more than 55 games in any one season on the network. It’ll also become the first time the franchise has seen 60 regular season games televised in any one season period (including games that were on national networks such as Versus, ESPN, NBC, etc.).

Additionally, Preds fans have complained loudly over the past couple years that not enough games were in high definition. It seems those complaints have been heard. FS Tennessee will broadcast a minimum of 45 games in HD this season, meaning at least 75% of the games televised on the flagship will be in stunning HD quality.

Here’s to hoping 10 of the 15 games not in HD are the games in Los Angeles, Anaheim, San Jose, Vancouver and Phoenix where the puck drops after 10pm Central on each. (Might as well have standard definition on games with the least amount of viewers, yeah?)

This is truly a step in the right direction for the team. A four year television contract in a non-traditional market like Nashville is nothing to scoff at and the dramatic increase in HD games is nothing short of a prayer answered for the die-hard hockey fans in Middle Tennessee.

The official press release clearlystates that FS Tennessee’s sister station SportSouth will be carrying some of the Predators broadcasts each season in order to fulfill their contractual obligation.