According to a report in Sports Illustrated, there will be a new way to watch NBA games on Twitter this season through a partnership between the NBA, Twitter, and Turner Sports.
For 20 NBA games on TNT, fans will have access to a single-player view during the second half. They will have the opportunity to vote on who will be featured. The first broadcast will be during the NBA All-Star Game on February 17th, with future streams throughout the regular season and playoffs
NBA VP of digital media Sam Farber said that NBA digital influencers will offer commentary on the games, although he did not say who these influencers might be. He told Sports Illustrated, “We envision this being a complementary experience to the linear broadcast on TNT. The vision for this feed is to push the boundaries of game presentation and interactivity.”
Turner Sports manages NBA Digital, along with the league, and Farber said that the partnership came from Turner — who is expected to be getting a rights fee from Twitter. The NBA and Turner have been progressive in their use of digital rights. The company started selling just the final quarter of NBA games for $1.99.
The deal will grow an already strong relationship between the NBA and Twitter. In May, Rick Maese wrote in the Washington Post about NBA fan twitter as “a sports bar that doesn’t close, where the stars pull up a seat next to you.”
NBA Commissioner Adam Silver and Twitter CEO Jack Dorsey are scheduled to speak at the Consumer Electronics Show in Las Vegas at 1pm PT today about the partnership and the NBA’s approach to sports technology. You can watch the live stream here.