With 9000 tickets left to sell as of Thursday there’s no way the Chargers could have avoided a blackout of their game against the Colts without financial assistance. (Or without buying some of the tickets on their own.) With no blackout of any Monday Night Football game since the last week of the 1999 season ESPN stepped up to preserve a streak that predates the movement of MNF to the four-lettter network by seven years.

The Chargers have announced that ESPN and a “consortium” of sponsors have guaranteed the purchase of enough tickets to lift the local blackout. (We won’t be listing the consortium of sponsors by name unless they also want to become a consortium of PFT sponsors.)

It means that the tickets were purchased at 34 cents on the dollar. It also means that the commitment likely was made before the false urgency of a 24-hour extension may have prompted some suckers customers to buy tickets under the impression that’s the only way they’d see the game.