The team told the station Tuesday that it had 30 days to match a "higher assessed fair market value" or the Cubs would begin searching for a new broadcast partner. The two sides chose a third party to decide the new, increased value of a television contract.
WGN hosts about 70 games each season as they split broadcast rights with CSN Chicago. The two combined deals see the Cubs receive approximately $60 million each season. Their agreement with CSN will expire after 2019. Had the Cubs chosen not to terminate their contract with WGN now, that deal would have extended through 2022.
The Cubs and WGN have had a working relationship since 1948, but with television contracts soaring for professional sports teams that agreement may come to an end. The Los Angeles Dodgers set a new bar with a 25 year contract worth $7 billion with Time Warner Cable to host their own cable network.