MLB, NBA and NHL Look to Buy Bally Sports Regional Sports Networks – The Streamable

after, after Soft launch of direct-to-consumer service In June, Sinclair Broadcast Group (SBG)’s Bally Sports Networks was set to The complete sports broadcaster went on the market on Monday, September 26. However, the New York Post reports that the broadcaster may already be looking for a way out of RSN altogether.

On Tuesday, The Post reported that the three major sports leagues whose games are at the heart of Bally Sports’ programs — Major League Baseball, NBA and NHL — are expected to begin negotiations with Diamond Sports, the SBG-owned sports vertical. Despite the fact that Diamond mentioned it last month Broadcasting device retained 74% of customers Those who signed up for a seven-day trial during the beta launch, no fixed numbers were given to subscribers at that time.

The Post has now reported that Diamond Sports is “bleeding cash and could be heading for potential bankruptcy if it doesn’t find a white knight in the coming months,” according to sources.

At the time of its beta launch earlier this summer, the broadcaster focused on the markets for the five baseball teams it owns the broadcast rights to – Detroit TigersAnd the Milwaukee BrewersAnd the Miami MarlinsAnd the Kansas City RoyalsAnd the Tampa Bay Rays. When the service is widely launched next week, it will expand to markets that include 16 NBA Teams And the 12 NHL Teams which Sinclair owns the rights to.

Reports earlier this year suggested that MLB could launch its own streaming option on the market as early as 2023 to align with the industry leader. MLB.TV An off-market plan, and so far, Bally Sports has been Unable to add any other baseball teams to a broadcast rights package, which is vital to the ability to sustain a successful sports broadcasting business year-round.

The Post reports that MLB has asked SBG to pay an additional fee for the broadcast rights to the nine teams Diamond owns the broadcast rights to. Sinclair believes these rights are already part of her deals with the teams.

Sources tell The Post that Diamond Sports could get up to $3 billion for RSN — both streaming and cable — which will include the company’s debt. Sinclair bought the former Fox Sports channels in 2019 from 21st Century Fox after Disney acquired most of the company’s remaining assets. Sinclair paid $10.6 billion to acquire exclusive rights to broadcast matches for a group of 42 MLB, NHL and NBA matches. At the time, MLB was part of a group that tried to buy RSNs, but was ultimately unsuccessful.

The Post’s sources believe that Sinclair will give control of the company to creditors who will sell the Diamond to tournaments. If this “big solution” doesn’t pay off, the common belief is that the company’s creditors could force Diamond Sports to file for bankruptcy in the next three to six months, despite the fact that the company has enough cash to last at least another year.

The report alleges that Diamond was telling the leagues that if they went bankrupt, they would continue to broadcast matches, but would not pay teams previously agreed rights deals, because they would have court protection from creditors. It will then consider renegotiating the most advantageous financial arrangements for broadcasting rights. Teams in the three leagues involved can make up to a third of their revenue from TV deals, so any reduction in rights fees could have a huge impact on the clubs’ business — and in the case of the NBA and the National Hockey League, the league’s salary cap.

with the The cable industry continues to decline And the launch of Bally Sports + being less smoothThe storming of regional sports networks did not go according to Sinclair Broadcast Group’s plan. However, if the company can get out of its reported $8.5 billion debt, and the three leagues can take back a portion of its team’s broadcasting rights and then sell it to the highest bidder, the situation could end up being a win-win for everyone involved. .

to be announced later on