There has been a lot of uncertainty as to how sports coverage in the United States would look after Diamond Sports Group, the largest owner of regional sports networks, filed for Chapter 11 bankruptcy protection last March.
Diamond owns 19 networks under the Bally Sports banner, with the network rights for 42 professional sports teams — 12 NHL, 16 for the NBA and 14 for MLB.
On Thursday’s episode of Daily Faceoff LIVE, Frank Seravalli and Tyler Yaremchuk discuss the latest Bally Sports news and if could affect the bottom line for the NHL and its clubs.
Tyler Yaremchuk: I want to start a conversation about league revenue. One big part of that conversation is the bankruptcy of Bally Sports, which holds 11 regional TV deals across the United States. Does the NHL have a long-term play here?
Frank Seravalli: They’re in the process of figuring that out. There was a report earlier this week that the NBA has reached a deal with Bally Sports for their TV deals where it essentially stabilizes everything. Bally Sports will finish out the year, so they won’t just dump all these regional TV deals back on to the NBA right now. There’s going to be a reduction in the amount paid to the NBA, and then the league will take over rights again for next season and beyond.
The NHL is negotiating a similar deal, they haven’t gotten there yet. We’ve seen other teams like the Arizona Coyotes have the league take over their broadcast rights. The teams that have gone in a different path like Arizona, the Vegas Golden Knights, their revenues aren’t quite at the level they were in years past because of the TV rights deal, but as it stands right now, the league isn’t concerned and there will be no material impact on the overall cap situation moving forward.
You can watch the full episode here…