According to Front Office Sports’ sources, the National Basketball Association (NBA) is on the verge of selling a streaming-only games package worth one billion dollars as part of its next media rights deal.
The possibility of obtaining an exclusive bundle of live sports is expected to entice the most prominent streaming services in the globe, such as Apple and Amazon. Patrick Crakes, a sports media specialist, projected that the bidding for the streaming-only package will likely start at $1 billion per year.
The National Basketball Association (NBA) is planning to ask for between $50 billion and $75 billion for its next long-term rights package, which will begin in 2025. That would double or triple the league’s current nine-year contract with Disney’s ABC/ESPN and Warner Bros. Discovery’s TNT, which pays the league $2.6 billion annually. The pact is worth $24 billion.
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Streaming is included as part of the current agreement, which was signed in 2014, and is provided via the league’s own media platforms, as well as ESPN, TNT, and the several regional sports networks (RSNs) that telecast local games.
The most prominent sports leagues, on the other hand, seek to increase the number of parties interested in bidding on their media rights while simultaneously developing commercial relationships with the most prominent technology companies. Because of this, “Thursday Night Football” has been shifted to Amazon Prime Video as part of an agreement that is worth $1 billion per year and extends all the way until 2033.
A spokesperson for the NBA responded to a question about streaming by saying, “We know our fans have come to expect us to deliver content through both traditional and emerging methods.” The statement was made in response to the fact that the NBA values its media rights partnerships with Disney and Warner Bros. Discovery.
According to one source, Amazon has made it abundantly clear that it wants an NBA bundle in addition to the NFL package.
Amazon has just agreed to broadcast 87 live games in Brazil for the 2022-2023 season, which will include live coverage of all playoff games. During the game between the Green Bay Packers and the Tennessee Titans on November 17, the league’s most popular player, LeBron James, will co-host an alternative feed of Thursday Night Football for Amazon.
According to a reliable source, Amazon is prepared to take its chances in the National Basketball Association (NBA).
Since making a huge start earlier this season, Amazon’s TNF audiences have been on a downward trend. However, the e-commerce giant is confident that the broadcast TV-like quality of its NFL telecasts, as well as its potential to draw younger viewers, will make it appealing to Adam Silver’s technologically advanced NBA.
However, even Amazon cannot compete with the annual sales and market capitalization of Apple. Apple has been steadily making its way into the live sports industry, most recently signing a landmark $2.5 billion, 10-year deal with Major League Soccer and purchasing a package of Friday Night Baseball games from Major League Baseball for $85 million each year. Both of these deals mark Apple’s entry into the live sports industry.
The direct-to-consumer sports industry is expanding, and the National Basketball Association’s owners can’t wait to get a piece of it. ClipperVision is the new name for the streaming service that was just introduced by Steve Ballmer, owner of the Los Angeles Clippers.
How extensive will the National Basketball Association’s streaming package be?
According to Crakes, a former Fox Sports executive who is now a media consultant, a starting package of 20-40 games should be anticipated for the 19-week regular season of the NBA. That works out to one or two matches every week.
Both ESPN and TNT would like to have games available on their own online streaming services. Additionally, Crakes pointed out that the league’s existing media partners can utilize their back-end rights as a form of leverage. This indicates that there is a good chance the games will be removed from the inventory managed by RSNs.
According to Crakes, investing $1 billion year in the NBA would bring in close to $7 billion (in annual rights fees.) In addition, I believe that the NBA will reach an agreement for a shorter term. 4-5 years.“
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