ESPN Grows Commitment to Women’s Sports with Athletes Unlimited Deal

    • ESPN has entered a two-year exclusive broadcasting rights deal with Athletes Unlimited.
    • At least 90 live events will be aired across ESPN’s platforms.

ESPN has reached a deal with Athletes Unlimited to broadcast pro softball and lacrosse exclusively on its platforms for the next two years.

At least 90 live events will be aired over the course of the deal on ESPN, ESPN2, or ESPNU, with the rest on ESPN+.

As part of the agreement, some international fans will be able to tune in, too, on ESPN Latin America and TSN in Canada.

ESPN+ will also air a four-part series called “Going Pro: Athletes Unlimited Lacrosse,” which covers four athletes and how the sport has changed their lives.

With basketball and volleyball, Athletes Unlimited currently has four sports and became the first and only league to be structured as a Public Benefit Corporation earlier this month.

CBS and Fox had rights to the five-week basketball league this year, which compensated its athletes an average of more than $20,000 per player. Players in Athletes Unlimited’s first-ever six-week softball league in 2020 were able to earn up to $35,000 with salary and bonuses, with a minimum of $10,000.

The third championship softball season of Athletes Unlimited starts July 29, with its second Lacrosse season beginning this summer. Dates have yet to be announced.