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The Bally Sports Thread


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9 minutes ago, T.L. Hughes said:

Of course, the reason why Disney couldn’t buy them in the first place is because acquiring the RSNs as part of the 20CF purchase would have given Disney too much market share in sports broadcasting… what with ESPN being the largest cable sports network, and its namesake subsidiary owning eight sister channels in the U.S. alone, a pay-per-view unit, two streaming platforms (ESPN3, then within the now-defunct WatchESPN app, and the then-fledgling ESPN+), two radio networks (plus a Sirius/XM channel), and holding control of ABC’s sports division.


So, the only options for 21st Century Fox were to pull the Fox Sports RSNs off the market and retain ownership of them or sell them to a third party (as they ultimately did). Quite frankly, as much as I still don’t think Murdoch selling 20th Century Fox, and the FX and National Geographic networks made much sense (especially when that library would have been useful to them from a streaming standpoint), I’m not sure why selling the Fox Sports regional networks was a good idea, given that 21CF was clearly better able to support them than Diamond Sports was, given the Murdochs’ deep pockets.

I agree to a point, yeah selling off the other assets was a bad idea and maybe perhaps Murdoch was a bit of a genius with that.


But the RSNs, the Murdochs were absolutely correct pulling out of the RSN business, at first yeah it didn't make sense but given what's happened since, yeah they were right selling the FSNs.

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The RSN business is collapsing faster than the core cable bundle. The problem traces back to when teams and media companies got greedy in forming channels. Everyone wanted their own channel because you could get X dollars a month per subscriber from the cable company. Teams shifted away from broadcast partners to join RSNs. The result became a glut of channels with limited rights to fill 24 hours of airtime. Now comes streaming and that subscriber money is drying up. RSNs are like that children's game of hot potato, where you don't want to be stuck with the potato when the music stops. The music is about to stop and Sinclair has the RSNs with ever-shrinking value.

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On 4/2/2021 at 6:39 PM, dman748 said:

There's just so much that I need to analyze on that article it'll be a long one so please bear with me on this one:

That is likely where I see the Bally Sports Extra channels ultimately being used for eventually. Keep the traditional broadcast on the main and then those that want to watch the game from a sports betting perspective can watch it on the Extra channel.

I'm a huge fan of this idea, this is a very good way of attracting new younger fans. Both the sports betting aspect of it and this Hockey University concept is a good way of doing that.

I believe this is the approach that I'm sure Sinclair is doing right now even with the SportsCenter-esque show that @Georgie56has been mentioning so much of. I think Sinclair really wants to try to finish what Fox tried to start in the late 90s and (ultimately) make it work when it does launch its OTT/DTC service


Also I have a feeling Georgie is correct on 2 key fronts:

I have a feeling Sinclair really wants to carve out its own niche in a way. I don't see so much of Sinclair trying to compete with ESPN as much as I see Sinclair carving out its own niche in an area of this SportsCenter-style show. One of the advantages Sinclair has is (in addition to the RSNs and Stadium) is the local stations. Sinclair can tap into the local stations for major sports stories as well and in a way that's a huge advantage over SportsCenter right there because you don't see SportsCenter doing anything like that at all not even with its ABC O&Os. They might use the O&Os for like during player/coach interview segments and certain other things but that's pretty much it.

This is pretty much consistent with what Bally Sports North is doing by putting some T-Wolves games on WUCW, In fact I wouldn't be surprised to see certain shows actually replace syndicated programming down the road.

Again. There's your big hint right there that one of the many shows Sinclair is in the process of developing is a SportsCenter-style show.


I think to summarize up all of the points is, I hope Sinclair is learning from the mistakes Fox made. But I'm sure Sinclair also understands they can't be running the same type of programs Fox had been running in the later years which I believe is one of the many reasons why the streammers and Dish has been balking at the RSNs. The RSNs charge way too much for programming that (outside of live sports and the pre/post shows) are garbage..That might be what gets the RSNs back on at least the streammers eventually. Dish on the other hand might be a lost cause though.


It'll be an interesting 12 months for Sinclair.


On 4/1/2021 at 10:30 AM, Georgie56 said:

Watching the Bally Sports opening day special (which is being seen on all BSNs), and I think they could be testing the waters for a news and highlights show in the future. 

Called it.


Sinclair said today in their Q3 earnings call they are launching a 90-minute sports news show called "The Rally" launching at the beginning of next year, and it'll be available on the RSNs (so I assume this will include YES and Marquee). In addition, it'll also be available on Stadium and STIRR

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  • 4 weeks later...

Chris Ripley now says that he has enough teams to launch a sucessful DTC service and that he believes news on those renewals that will include DTC rights will come shortly


Honest opinion, I'm not convinced that Ripley is going to get everything he wants in any DTC deal with the leagues. What I think will happen is that Sinclair will get a deal done but with compromises, essentially the way I'm picturing a deal would look like would be something to the effect of that Sinclair does get DTC rights with the NBA, NHL, MLB and probably MLS too but as part of it, they give NBA/NHL/MLB/MLS a smaller stake in the DTC service and the rights to those teams to broadcast the games (both linear and DTC) get turned over to the leagues.

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  • 1 month later...

Apparently, The Rally debuts on the BSNs (and likely Marquee and YES) Jan. 24. Also, former Cubs beat writer Russell Dorsey has joined Bally Sports.




Edited by Georgie56
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  • Georgie56 changed the title to The Bally Sports Thread

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