DirecTV says it had a deal that would have made KTLA and the other Tribune stations available to satellite cusotmers. But DirecTV claims in a complaint filed with the FCC that Tribune management was overruled by the hedge fund and investment bank creditors who hold the bankrupt company's debt. The KTLA stations were pulled from DirecTV over the weekend. From the LAT:
DirecTV believes it has a smoking gun in the form of email and phone conversations between Derek Chang, its executive vice president, and Nils Larsen, the head of Tribune's television station group. In the filing, DirecTV's Chang said he asked Larsen why their agreed-upon deal was now no good, and that Larsen replied that "his constituents" had overruled Tribune management. Chang also said he spoke to Edgar Lee, a senior vice president of Oaktree Capital Management, L.P., who said creditors told Tribune management that they would not support the agreement in principle and that Tribune could not sign off on the deal without that approval. An assistant for Lee said Oaktree does not comment on its business.
Tribune says that Chang's description of his conversations with Larsen is "not accurate" and that "any intimation that our broadcast licenses have been prematurely transferred is simply false and misleading." If nothing else, it's a reminder of how little is known about the relationship between the Tribune creditors and the Tribune management.