Friday, October 10, 2014

NBA Extends Television Deal

On Monday, October 6, the NBA announced they had extended their television deals with Turner and Disney for nine years through the 2024-25 season.  This deal is said to be worth $24 billion and each team will receive $70 million over that time.  It appears to be a win-win-win for the league, teams, and players.

With the new agreement, ESPN, ABC, and TNT will now air more games during the year for the national audience.  There will be the inaugural NBA Awards show for yearly awards; twenty D-League games will be televised on ESPN networks; and WNBA games will continue to be aired on ESPN/ABC.  The 2016-17 season will be the first time D-League games will be aired on cable networks.  As a matter of fact, it is likely the first time a minor league will have nationally televised games.  This shows the expansion of the use of the D-League to help develop young professional basketball players.

Many have said that the NBA is on its way out, in terms of popularity.  There are many egos, the game is not being played the right way, players do not give their best effort like in the college game, etc.  So why would Turner and Disney sign this new deal?  With the influx of international players, the NBA not only appeals to Americans, but also to immigrants and first-generation Americans who still have strong ties to their nationality.  For example, players like Pau Gasol, Manu Ginobili, and Giannis Antetokounmpo appeal to audiences that may not have previously watched basketball before.
Giannis Antetokounmpo on the left and Manu Ginobili
defending Pau Gasol on the right.
This deal will also allow for teams to build new arenas, practice facilities, and everything state of the art.  While the players will love the pay boost, the rest of the team will enjoy new facilities to work. Commissioner Adam Silver is making an effort to do what is best for the league and so far, he is doing a great job.  Now, will we be seeing new television deals of similar multitudes in the other professional sports leagues?  Only time will tell.

Micah Sokolsky is a Pre-Junior Sport Management major at Drexel University with minors in Spanish and Business.  Micah hails from San Francisco, CA and was a participant on Drexel Sport Management’s College Sport Research Institute (CSRI) team last year in Chapel Hill, North Carolina in 2013.  Micah completed his first co-op with the Camden Riversharks minor league baseball team in their Marketing and Promotions department.  A member of the Alpha Epsilon Pi Fraternity, Micah is involved on campus as the Athletics Chairman for the Inter-Fraternity Council and as a Resident Assistant in Race Hall. Connect withMicah on LinkedIn.

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