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Sounders sign new multi-year TV deal

Team announces extension with Q13.

The Seattle Sounders have renewed their broadcast contract with Q13/Joe TV, signing a multi-year deal that will keep them available on the over-the-air channel for the foreseeable future. The announcement came Thursday morning during Q13's morning news show in which head coach Sigi Schmid was a guest.

That the Sounders chose to remain on Q13 should hardly be a surprise. After spending their first five seasons on NBC-affiliate KING/KONG, the Sounders moved to the Fox affiliate last year and enjoyed some of their best ratings ever, including a 32 percent increase from 2013. In fact, Q13 sports anchor Aaron Levine said the Sounders had the best local ratings of any MLS team.

In addition to the extension, it was also announced that former Sounders Steve Zakuani and Marcus Hahnemann will have some role on broadcasts. Ross Fletcher will continue to be the play-by-play voice, but there has not yet been an announcement as to Kasey Keller's role going forward. UPDATE: It was announced that Kasey Keller will return as the color announcers and Jackie Montgomery would be hosting the pre- and post-game shows along with a rotating caste of Taylor Graham, Pete Fewing, Zakuani and Hahnemann.

The new deal also includes pre- and post-game shows during the 21 broadcasts, eight of which will be on Q13 and the other 13 of which will be on JoeTV. Assuming it's a formal postgame show and not a short wrap-up, that would be a first for Sounders broadcasts.

This news should also clear the way for the Sounders to announce kickoff times for the rest of their home games.