New Series: DRIVEN with Michelle Wie West
Watch Now

Bally Sports Networks Is Losing Subscribers

  • Diamond Sports Group owns Bally Sports' 19 regional sports networks.
  • The RSNs air games of 42 NBA, MLB, and NHL teams.
Jerome Miron-USA TODAY Sports

A subsidiary of Sinclair Broadcast Group is underperforming ahead of a probable shakeup.

Diamond Sports Group — the owner of Bally Sports’ regional sports networks — has reported a 10% decline in subscribers in 2022 as it faces a potential change in ownership or structure. The drop in subscribers has been attributed to consumers transitioning from linear TV to streaming. 

In August, Diamond — once believed to be valued at $3 billionhired investment banks LionTree and Moelis & Company, leading to speculation that Sinclair could sell its broadcast provider of local sports or that the company could be facing bankruptcy. 

New York-based LionTree facilitated Comcast’s sale of NBC Sports Washington in September to Washington Wizards, Capitals, and Mystics owner Ted Leonsis for an undisclosed amount. 

  • Sinclair generated $843 million in revenue in Q3 2022, a 45% decline year-over-year.
  • The company purchased Diamond in 2019 for $9.6 billion.
  • Diamond owns 19 RSNs, which air games of 42 NBA, MLB, and NHL teams.
  • Those leagues have reportedly expressed interest in Diamond’s RSNs if available.
Bally-Sports

NBA, MLB, and NHL Eyeing 21 Bally TV Networks

Sinclair acquired the RSNs from Disney in 2019 for $10.6 billion.
September 21, 2022

“There is no sale process,” said Sinclair CEO Chris Ripley on a third-quarter earnings call. “But we’re talking to parties about deleveraging, strategic partnerships, and things of that nature.”

Cutting the Cord

In June, Diamond launched direct-to-consumer streaming service Bally Sports+ in five regions and has since expanded to all 19 of its RSNs. Sinclair has yet to disclose how many subscribers the service has added at pricing options of $20 per month or $190 per year.