The National Basketball Association (NBA) and Sony SIX - a television channel operated by Multi Screen Media (MSM) - are set to extend their profitable and high-profile marriage for five more years, in a deal estimated at around Rs. 250 crore (reported NitiCentral). The deal allows MSM and Sony SIX to continue to hold broadcast rights for NBA games and related NBA programmes in India.
two live NBA games daily during the course of the regular season, adding to a mammoth 14 live NBA games in India per week! As time passed and the NBA's popularity and viewership grew, SIX added many more supporting programmes to their NBA package, including India's first wrap-up show NBA Weekly, an Indian version of the iconic NBA Inside Stuff, grassroots events like NBA Jam from India, and more.
This season, all of the above is set to continue: two games everyday during the season, special All Star Weekend, Playoffs, and Finals coverage, condensed version of games at primetime in India, and other wrap-up shows. Additionally, IndianTelevision.com reported that Sony SIX will also create customized lifestyle-oriented, off-the-court programming from the NBA, Sony entertainment and Bollywood.
Sony SIX and KIX business head Prasana Krishnan commented, "Our partnership with the NBA has seen basketball become the fastest growing sport in India over the last few years. This clearly indicates that the TV viewing audience for the NBA will continue to rise. The launch of our customized local LIVE NBA wraparound program will also bring sports fans closer to the on-court action."
NBA India managing director Yannick Colaco asserted, "We are excited to extend our partnership with Sony SIX to continue delivering comprehensive coverage of the NBA to our fans. The popularity of the NBA continues to grow and, through the diversity of NBA programming on Sony SIX, we will continue attracting and engaging with existing and new viewers alike across India."
Sony SIX will continue to broadcast daily and weekly NBA highlight shows and integrate daily content from NBA TV, including team previews and recap shows. The daily 30-minute highlight programs will be broadcast in prime time every day of the season. The weekly highlight shows, hosted by a local anchor, will recap all the happenings around the NBA during the past week.
For the first time in India, the NBA and Sony SIX will introduce a customized, local live NBA wraparound program every weekend throughout the season, bringing viewers closer to the game. The program will be hosted by a panel of basketball experts that will provide analysis and insight on all of the latest NBA news.
During the previous NBA Finals, Sony SIX's Krishnan had also mentioned the channels desire to chase viewership, not brands, while Colaco added that the NBA has been growing at 'triple digit percentile' in every aspect, including merchandise, social media engagement, and TV viewership in India.
The upcoming season's broadcast on Sony SIX is set to begin on October 24th (this Saturday!), while the new NBA season tips off on Wednesday, October 28th!