NBA’s New $76B Media Deals Reportedly Finalized: Here’s Where Things Stand

Estimated read time 4 min read

It may be time to start playing the “Roundball Rock.” After months of heavy speculation, a new report by The Athletic on Wednesday says that the NBA’s new media rights deals have been finalized. According to the outlet, Comcast’s NBC and Peacock and Amazon’s Prime Video will join Disney’s ABC and ESPN as the television and streaming partners for national NBA games starting in the 2025-26 season. 

The new deals are expected to run for 11 years and be worth $76 billion. It remains unclear if TNT, which currently broadcasts NBA games, will utilize a reported matching rights clause in its existing TV deal to keep one of the three packages. According to The Athletic, if TNT doesn’t try to match any of the new deals the NBA is expected to officially announce its new media agreements before the Olympics kick off on July 26. 

Here’s what you need to know. 

Where can I watch the NBA for the 2024-25 season? 

The NBA has long aired games on ESPN, ABC and TNT and that isn’t expected to change for this upcoming season. The new media deals that have caught headlines will begin with the 2025-26 NBA season. 

While it isn’t exactly clear what might happen with the in-season tournament for 2024-25 (ESPN and TNT shared the games last year), you can expect to watch national NBA games next season as just you did this past season. 

Can I stream the NBA this upcoming season? 

Yes, the NBA’s national games will be streamable. Just like last year you can expect to watch games on streaming TV services like YouTube TV, DirecTV, Sling TV and the upcoming Venu Sports (a sports-focused streaming service and joint venture between Disney, Warner Bros. Discovery and Fox) as well as on Warner Bros. Discovery’s Max, which has streamed TNT games. 

Whether Max will charge for the NBA this upcoming season, however, remains to be seen. It has previously said it planned to charge extra for live sports but has so far continually delayed the move. 

What is going to happen to TNT’s Inside the NBA? 

Inside the NBA Inside the NBA

Victor Wembanyama, middle, of the San Antonio Spurs is interviewed by Shaquille O’Neal, Ernie Johnson, Kenny Smith and Charles Barkley from TNT. 

Brandon Todd/NBAE via Getty Images

This also remains unclear. If TNT loses its NBA rights, it might mean the end for the Inside the NBA studio show and its long, celebrated, award-winning run. Host Ernie Johnson has reportedly said he doesn’t want to leave the network (where he also does MLB and March Madness coverage) and star Charles Barkley has already said he would retire from television after next season. It is unclear what the other stars of Inside the NBA, Kenny Smith and Shaquille O’Neal, are planning on doing or if a version of the show might live on with a different network or streamer. 

Who is taking over the NBA rights starting in 2025-26? 

The NBA will continue to broadcast games on ABC and ESPN, with TNT currently dropping out and being replaced by Amazon’s Prime Video, NBC and Peacock. 

So is TNT officially out? 

Not yet. Because of that possible matching language in its existing media deal, Warner Bros. Discovery may have a chance to match the new deals and keep the NBA. There were also rumors TNT was trying to create a “fourth” rights package, though with this latest report, it looks like the NBA has decided against that idea. 

Rumors suggest that if Warner Bros. Discovery, the owners of TNT, were to attempt to go after any of the three packages it would be the one offered by Amazon. 

When will games air on each platform? 

Per the report, Peacock will have exclusive games on Mondays while NBC will air games on Tuesdays (these NBC broadcasts will also stream on Peacock). Prime Video would have games on Friday nights and Saturdays, while ESPN would have games on Wednesdays, Saturdays and Sundays. ABC would have games on Saturday nights during the NFL season. 

After the NFL regular season ends, NBC could also have games on Sundays (replacing Sunday Night Football), Prime Video on Thursdays (replacing Thursday Night Football) and ESPN on Fridays. 

This would mean nationally televised, regular season NBA action every night of the week. 

The report says all three media partners would get playoff games, with Amazon and NBC rotating a conference finals each year. ESPN and ABC would keep one conference finals and the NBA Finals. 

The in-season tournament, which debuted last season, will air on Prime Video. 

How much will these new league fees cost? 

Disney will reportedly be paying $2.6 billion per year for its package of games, NBC will shell out $2.5 billion and Amazon is expected to spend $1.8 billion. 

Source link

You May Also Like

More From Author

+ There are no comments

Add yours