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Sinclair Finalizes Bally DTC Streaming Deal for 16 NBA Teams

Ben Bowman

Sinclair’s upcoming DTC streaming service just got a big shot in the arm. As The Streamable reported last week, a deal has now wrapped to lock up streaming rights for 16 NBA teams.

  • Atlanta Hawks
  • Charlotte Hornets
  • Cleveland Cavaliers
  • Dallas Mavericks
  • Detroit Pistons
  • Indiana Pacers
  • LA Clippers
  • Memphis Grizzlies
  • Miami Heat
  • Milwaukee Bucks
  • Minnesota Timberwolves
  • New Orleans Pelicans
  • Oklahoma City Thunder
  • Orlando Magic
  • Phoenix Suns
  • San Antonio Spurs

The games still will be available on Sinclair’s Bally Sports’ regional sports networks. The streamed games will not be available nationally. It’s believed the deal is short-term, possibly just for one year.

“We are excited about our continued partnership with the NBA which allows us to bring the league’s in-demand and exciting basketball content to local fans across multiple platforms,” said Chris Ripley, Sinclair Broadcast Group’s President and Chief Executive Officer. “Sinclair places the highest importance on connecting sports fans with live games and other sports content. We are looking forward to the launch of our DTC platform in 2022, ushering in a new era of local sports viewing with a more personalized and dynamic viewing experience.”

Bloomberg reports that Sinclair is closing in on $600 million in financing to support the launch of the Bally streaming service later this year. This NBA deal is similar to Sinclair’s recent agreement with the NHL.

In October, NBA Commissioner Adam Silver at the World Congress of Sports said of the Regional Sports Networks, “For now, clearly, the (cable) bundle’s broken. I mean, we’re seeing now an issue that’s very topical at the moment, our regional sports networks, Sinclair in particular, and they’re, we’re trying with them to work through those issues.”

Sinclair had been circulating a $23 a month price point for the Bally Sports DTC service as part of Sinclair’s fundraising efforts. That number was denied by Sinclair CEO Chris Ripley in an interview with the Baltimore Business Journal.

Ripley believes that the company will be able to acquire net new direct-to-consumer subscribers, who no longer subscribe to a cable bundle, rather than cannibalize it. He believes that the wholesale price will continue to be a good value for cable, satellite, and Live TV Streaming distributors.

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