The National Basketball Association (NBA) and Sky Sports today announced a new four-year broadcast and multiplatform partnership that will see Sky Sports become the NBA’s exclusive broadcast partner and official website operator in the UK and Ireland. As part of the NBA’s most extensive UK and ROI partnership ever, Sky Sports will broadcast extensive season-long games and programming including more than 170 live games and a record number of live weekend primetime games starting from 8.30pm UK time.
The partnership will also see live games and highlights of the WNBA (Women’s National Basketball Association) starting with the 2019 season that tips off in May.
Sky Sports will also become the NBA’s new online destination for fans in the UK with extensive video highlights, news, stats, scores and original digital content, enabling fans to stay connected to the game whenever, wherever they are.
The NBA’s 73rd regular season tips off on Tuesday, Oct. 16, 2018 with Sky Sports Main Event airing the opening-night doubleheader featuring the Philadelphia 76ers visiting the Boston Celtics and the defending NBA Champion Golden State Warriors hosting the Oklahoma City Thunder starting at 01.00am.
As a taste of things to come, fans will be able to experience 48-hours of continuous NBA action on a special Sky Sports Arena takeover starting on Tuesday, Oct. 16 at 6.00am featuring archived ‘Classic Games’ and specialized programming. The Philadelphia 76ers vs Boston Celtics and Golden State Warriors vs Oklahoma City Thunder games will also be simulcast on Sky Sports Arena starting at 01.00am.
Sky Sports Mix, available to all Sky TV customers at no extra cost, will show one match every week with full season coverage across Sky Sports Action, Sky Sports Arena, Sky Sports Main Event and Sky Sports News, Sky will become the true home of the NBA in the UK NBA fans will also be able to access the action contract-free through NOW TV, with passes for Sky Sports access starting at £7.99.
Coverage will include an average of five live games per week during the 2018-19 regular season including 42 games in primetime as part of the league’s NBA Saturdays’ and NBA Sundays’ Europe-wide weekend primetime initiative. Additionally, Sky Sports will broadcast four back-to-back games on Christmas Day from 5pm local time, totaling over 10 hours of live coverage. Fans can also look forward to marquee year-round events including NBA All-Star, the NBA Playoffs, the NBA Conference Finals, The NBA Finals, the NBA Draft, as well as NBA Hardwood Classic games.
Season-long Games and Programming:
– 170+ Live games and Classic Games
– Christmas Day Games
– NBA London Game 2019
– NBA All-Star 2019
– NBA Playoffs
– NBA Finals
– 42 Live Primetime Games
– NBA Action highlight show
– Live WNBA games
Extensive digital /mobile highlights:
– Individual Game recaps
– Fast Break (daily round up)
– Nightly Top 10
– Daily Zap
– Courtside Countdown (Top Plays of the Week)
– Game previews and unique editorial content
– Comprehensive scores, stats, team schedules and standings
– WNBA highlights
Key Primetime game highlights (UK times):
- Week 7: Phoenix Suns @ Los Angeles Lakers (Sunday, Dec. 2, 8.30 p.m.) – The Suns featuring 2018 No. 1 Draft Pick Deandre Ayton taking on LeBron James and the new-look Los Angeles Lakers.
- Christmas Day: Milwaukee Bucks @ New York Knicks; Oklahoma City @ Houston Rockets; Philadelphia 76ers @ Boston Celtics; Los Angeles Lakers @ Golden State Warriors (Tuesday, Dec. 25, from 5.00pm) – some of the biggest names battle it out on Christmas Day
- Week 14: Oklahoma City Thunder @ Philadelphia 76ers (Saturday, Jan. 19, 8.30 p.m.) – Russell Westbrook, Paul George and the Thunder go head-to-head with the 76ers featuring Joel Embiid and 2017-18 Kia NBA Rookie of the Year, Ben Simmons.
- Week 17: San Antonio @ Utah (Saturday, Feb. 9, 10.00 p.m.) – The reigning Defensive Player of the Year Rudy Gobert and the Jazz host DeMar DeRozan and his new team the Spurs.
- Week 20: Houston Rockets @ Boston Celtics (Sunday, Mar. 3, 8.30p.m.) – The 2018 Western Conference Finalist Rockets with reigning Kia MVP James Harden and new acquisition Carmelo Anthony and face off against Kyrie Irving, Jayson Tatum and the Celtics.
Source: Pitch London
Image: Adam Pantozzi/NBAE via Getty Images