• Loading stock data...
Monday, May 20, 2024

NBA Appears to Be on Track to Double Media-Rights Fee Intake

  • New deals could easily pay the league $6 billion annually.
  • ESPN and TNT currently hand over roughly $2.7 billion per year.
Michael Laughlin-USA TODAY Sports

As more NBA teams continue sealing their places in the second round of the playoffs, the league appears to be getting closer to a win of its own—securing its next set of media deals and a substantial rights fee increase in the process.

Disney and Warner Bros. Discovery are currently paying the NBA rightly $2.7 billion combined annually to air games on ESPN and TNT, respectively. Nothing new has been officially agreed to or signed, but already, factoring in the reported values of potential deals on the table, the league can likely expect to at least double its intake. Disney is on track to renew for an average of roughly $2.6 billion per year, and NBC is prepared to bid $2.5 billion annually, according to The Wall Street Journal. WBD has the right to match a rival bid if it chooses, as does Disney.

Although no financial details of Amazon’s potential deal with the NBA have been reported, it’s safe to assume that the streamer would pay enough annually to get the league well over $5.4 billion, which would be double its current deals, and potentially closer to $6 billion, if not even more.

Trending Up

Such an increase for the NBA would be impressive, given the growing disruption in the current sports media landscape.

Earlier this year, the College Football Playoff struck an extension with ESPN that will be worth $1.3 billion a year beginning in the 2026–27 season. While that is more than double the $608 million that the network has been paying, the new deal is for 11 postseason games as part of an expanded 12-team playoff. That means four more game broadcasts than the seven (three playoff, four other New Year’s Six bowl games) that were included in ESPN’s CFP package.

Last fall, NASCAR struck new media-rights deals, expanding from two partners for its flagship Cup Series to four, similar to the NBA’s seemingly going from two to at least three. The $1.1 billion NASCAR will bring in annually, starting next year, is a 40% increase over its current deals.

With cord-cutting continuing to challenge the entire media industry, the profitability of streaming still something of an open question, and most major U.S. sports rights locked up for the next several years, the NBA rights negotiation has been widely seen as something of a litmus test on the health of the overall market. Thus far, it appears the league is showing its strength, and then some.

Linkedin
Whatsapp
Copy Link
Link Copied
Link Copied

What to Read

Chaos at the PGA Championship: Here’s What We Know

The No. 1 golfer in the world nearly didn’t make it to Valhalla Golf Club.

Mets Owner Faces Backlash After Tweet Sparks Trade Speculation

Mets owner Steve Cohen is walking back a now deleted tweet that further riled an impatient fan base.

The WNBA Rookies Are Creating a New Celebrity Row

Major celebs like Kim Kardashian and Latto are showing up for the newbies.
Bally-Sports

DSG’s Path to Revival Faces Major Pushback from MLB, NBA, and NHL

Three major pro leagues raise further concerns about the bankrupt Bally Sports parent.
podcast thumbnail mobile
Front Office Sports Today

Bare Knuckle Fighting Comes Out of the Shadows

0:00

Featured Today

Michael Block signs autographs on the 18th hole during day three of practice for the PGA Championship at Valhalla Golf Club on Wednesday, May 15, 2024.

‘I Prefer It This Way’: How Life Works for PGA Club Pros

Here’s how life works for the qualifiers at golf’s second major.
February 5, 2019; Washington, DC, USA; The grounds of the Capitol Building empty out following the conclusion of President Donald Trump's State of the Union speech on February 5, 2019.
May 18, 2024

‘A Breathtaking Lobbying Campaign’: The NCAA’s Sophisticated Effort to Save Amateurism

Inside the carefully coordinated, multimillion-dollar operation to end the athletes’ rights era.
May 14, 2024

The WNBA Was Forged in Houston. Why Won’t It Go Back There?

Houston’s a perfect fit for expansion. The league isn’t considering it yet.
May 9, 2024; Indianapolis, IN, USA; Indiana Fever guard Caitlin Clark (22) stands with the team during the national anthem on Thursday, May 9, 2024, during the preseason game against the Atlanta Dream at Gainbridge Fieldhouse in Indianapolis.
May 12, 2024

‘Perfect Storm’: The Rise of Local WNBA Broadcast Pacts

With national attention reaching new heights, regional coverage could dictate the future.

Careers

Powered By

Careers in Sports

Looking for a new job? Check out these featured listings and search for openings all over the world.
Live Nation
Multiple - USA Careers
Adidas
Multiple - USA Careers
FanDuel
Multiple - USA Careers

NFL’s Christmas Shake-Up: Netflix and Amazon Will Take It Over in ’25

This is the new-age NFL, where anything goes, if the price is right.
May 15, 2024

NFL’s Schedule Points to Network Strategies: Chiefs Lead, Texans Rise

The two-time defending champions are a fixture across many of the league’s tentpole events.
May 16, 2024

Amazon’s Thursday Night Fever: Banking on Caitlin Clark’s Impact

Clark makes her home debut for the Indiana Fever on Thursday night.
Sponsored

Major League Rugby’s Vision for American Rugby

How Major League Rugby is leading the Rugby renaissance in the U.S.
May 15, 2024

Caitlin Clark Debuts With WNBA’s Most-Watched Game in Decades

The game averaged 2.12 million viewers, the WNBA’s highest since 2001.
May 15, 2024

MLB Slams Bally Sports Parent, Calls Blackout of Several Teams ‘Harmful’

The league blasts the bankrupt Bally Sports parent in a new court filing.
May 15, 2024

NFL Signs Three-Year Christmas Day Deal With Netflix

The streamer will show two holiday games in 2024 and one apiece in ’25 and ’26.
May 14, 2024

Want to Stream Live Sports? Better Know Your Bundle Options First

Comcast’s new StreamSaver bundle adds to a fast-growing number of combined offerings.