Bally Sports, L.A. Clippers Agree to Multi-Year Broadcast Deal, Including In-Market Streaming Service
As with most carriage deals, the Los Angeles Clippers and Bally Sports were cutting it close before the two sides agreed to a new, multi-year agreement for the regional sports network (RSN) to broadcast the NBA team’s games on Bally Sports SoCal. Despite having a 27-year broadcasting relationship, the two sides had not been able to come to an agreement for future seasons, and as the regular season approaches, some fans were beginning to be concerned about where Clips’ games would air.
Last month, the franchise announced that it would broadcast 11 regular season and four preseason games on local, over-the-air station KTLA 5, but no mention of the remaining games was made.
However, on Friday evening, Bally Sports announced that it had reached a deal to broadcast, produce, and stream 63 games during the upcoming 2022-23 season, which begins on Oct. 20. This NBA season will be the first that Bally Sports’ streaming service, Bally Sports+ is available for fans to stream games in-market without having to subscribe to a traditional TV package, and the Clippers are one of 16 NBA teams that the broadcaster owns the streaming rights for.
Bally Sports+ joins DIRECTV STREAM as the only two streaming services that will carry the Clippers this season, after Hulu, Sling TV, YouTube TV, and fuboTV dropped Bally Sports RSNs over the last two years.
“We’re proud to continue growing our long-term partnership with the Clippers organization,” Bally Sports SVP and GM Rebecca Schulte said. “We look forward to furthering our commitment to innovation and are thrilled to be bringing Clippers basketball to as many fans as possible across cable, satellite, streaming TV, and new this season, Bally Sports+, our direct-to-consumer streaming service.”
While this is certainly good news for basketball fans in Southern California, the future of Bally Sports is in question. Last month, there were reports that the NBA, NHL, and MLB were interested in acquiring Diamond Sports — Bally’s parent company — from Sinclair Broadcast Group as the subsidiary mulls declaring bankruptcy.
In addition to the 16 NBA teams whose games are available on Bally Sports+, the streamer also carries the rights to 12 NHL teams and five Major League Baseball teams, though SBG is actively attempting to add more baseball franchises to its roster for next season.
Bally Sports will welcome back Brian Sieman, Jim Jackson, Mike Fratello, Kristina Pink, and Jaime Maggio to the Clippers’ broadcast team, while the “Clippers Live” pre and postgame show will return as well. The broadcaster will preview the season with a special looking at the 2022-23 campaign on Oct. 13 and “Clippers Weekly” will debut after the first week of the regular season on Oct. 27.
In addition to coverage throughout Southern California, Nevada, and Hawaii, all Clippers games on Bally Sports SoCal will be available to fans located in the San Diego market on Bally Sports San Diego. With Clippers games being available to customers via cable and satellite in multiple regions, the team’s games via Bally Sports SoCal will be part of Bally Sports+’s bundling efforts in which fans are able to sign up for multiple RSNs at a discounted price in order to ensure that they have access to all of the games and content available to them via traditional broadcasters.
Bally Sports+ is a direct-to-consumer streaming service that offers live games for those who want access to your local Bally Sports RSN without subscribing to a cable or satellite package.
The service has two plans: a monthly plan for $19.99 a month, or an annual plan for $189.99 per year ($15.83/mo pre-paid annually), after a 7-Day Free Trial.
In areas where fans have access to more than one Bally sports network, an optional bundle allows the addition of a second channel. The monthly total for two RSNs is $29.99/month.
With the service, you can stream your local games from 16 NBA teams and 12 NHL teams.
In addition to NHL and NBA, there are five MLB teams available to stream: Detroit Tigers, Milwaukee Brewers, Miami Marlins, Kansas City Royals, and Tampa Bay Rays. Sinclair has yet to get approval from MLB to stream the rest of the teams that they own the traditional broadcast rights for.
The service is only intended for those who live in-market to their local teams. If you live out-of-market, you will need to subscribe to MLB.TV (MLB), NHL.TV via ESPN+ (NHL), or NBA League Pass (NBA).