4K Sports Descend on Canada: First-Ever Live 4K NBA Game From London Kicks Off Parade of 4K Content

Rogers, NBA, BT Sport to produce first live NBA game in 4K on Jan. 14; TSN set to debut live 4K sports next week

Live 4K sports are ready to take Canada by storm this week. Rogers’ Sportsnet and Bell Media’s TSN will each launch live 4K/UHD services with Toronto Raptors games this week — followed by a full slate of Raptors, NHL, and Toronto Blue Jays games to follow throughout 2016.

toronto-raptors-2016Sportsnet (in conjunction with the NBA and BT Sport) will present the Raptors vs. the Orlando Magic tomorrow (Jan. 14, 3 p.m. ET) live in 4K from The O2 Arena in London and then produce its first 4K show in Canada on Jan. 23 with the Montreal Canadiens vs. Toronto Maple Leafs. Rogers plans to produce more than 100 events live in 4K this year, including all 81 Blue Jays home games (in 4K with HDR) and 20-plus marquee NHL games.

Meanwhile, TSN will launch its live 4K/UHD offering when the Raptors host the Boston Celtics on Wednesday Jan. 20 at 7:30 p.m. ET. TSN’s five national feeds will follow this 4K debut with a slate of 4K broadcasts featuring the Raptors, Maple Leafs, and Ottawa Senators (with additional 4K broadcasts to be announced in the coming months).

Sportsvideo.org will provide full coverage of these groundbreaking 4K/UHD productions in the coming days, but, for now, here’s a breakdown of the live 4K sports programming set to hit Canada in the coming weeks.

Rogers, NBA, BT To Offer First Live 4K NBA Broadcast
Rogers, the National Basketball Association, and BT Sport will deliver the first live NBA game in 4K. Sportsnet will bring Canadians the Toronto Raptors vs. Orlando Magic Jan. 14 at 3 p.m. ET, live from The O2 Arena in London.

Rogers cable customers can tune their NextBox 4K set-top box to Channel 999 to get the game at four times the pixels of HD for stunning picture quality, higher resolution, and improved motion video. Sportsnet will also air the game in HD on Sportsnet East, Ontario, West, and Pacific and Sportsnet ONE.

“We’ve been working on 4K technology for the past few months to deliver superior quality for our Sportsnet productions,” says Rick Brace, president, Rogers Media. “This is cutting-edge technology that continues to evolve and will only get stronger. 4K is taking off, and we’re building world-class content and investing in technology to deliver a true 4K experience for our customers.”

Jamie Hindhaugh, COO, BT Sport and BT TV, says, “We are extremely proud to have launched Europe’s very first live sports 4K channel, BT Sport Ultra HD, and to be innovating and leading the UK TV market. It’s fantastic to be able to share our learning and expertise with the NBA and Rogers to broadcast the first-ever NBA game live in 4K in both the UK and Canada.”

Says Steve Hellmuth, EVP, operations and technology, NBA, “We are thrilled to team with BT Sport and Rogers to bring fans the first NBA game broadcast live in 4K. We are always looking for new and innovative ways to bring our passionate fans closer to our game, and this groundbreaking 4K broadcast is a great opportunity to provide fans at home the sharpest look ever at the NBA.”

In 2015, Rogers made North America’s largest commitment to live 4K sports broadcasting, rolling out its NextBox 4K set-top box and announcing more than 100 sports events live in 4K, including every 2016 Blue Jays home game, plus marquee NHL games. Rogers customers will also have access to stream 100 hours of 4K movies, series, and TV shows on shomi and an ever growing catalog of Netflix original series in 4K this year.

TSN Plans Live 4K Broadcast of the Raptors-Celtics 
TSN will debut its live 4K/UHD sports experience when the Raptors host the Boston Celtics on Wednesday Jan. 20 at 7:30 p.m. ET. Five national feeds will follow up on this 4K debut with a slate of 4K broadcasts featuring the Raptors, Maple Leafs, and Ottawa Senators (see below for TSN’s 4K broadcast schedule). Additional broadcasts available in 4K on TSN will be announced in the coming months.

“We are proud to be at the forefront of the next evolution in sports television with our first live broadcast in stunning 4K/Ultra HD next week,” says Stewart Johnston, president, TSN. “TSN has always been the innovator in live sports production, and we will continue to do what we do best: deliver a world-class sports-viewing experience to Canadian sports fans, now more vivid than ever before.”

Last week, Bell Media’s Discovery Canada announced that its premium video-streaming service Discovery GO now offers a growing inventory of titles available in 4K on Samsung UHD TV and its upcoming original Canadian drama Frontier is currently being shot in 4K.

TSN’s schedule of live sports broadcasts available in 4K is as follows (subject to change):

Wednesday Jan. 20
7:30 p.m. ET – Boston Celtics @ Toronto Raptors

Sunday, Jan. 24
6 p.m. ET – L.A. Clippers @ Toronto Raptors

Thursday, Jan. 28
8 p.m. ET – New York Knicks @ Toronto Raptors

Thursday, Feb. 4
7:30 p.m. ET – Edmonton Oilers @ Ottawa Senators

Monday, Feb. 8
7:30 p.m. ET – Tampa Bay Lightning @ Ottawa Senators

Thursday, Feb. 18
7:30 p.m. ET – New York Rangers @ Toronto Maple Leafs

Sunday, Feb. 21
6 p.m. ET – Memphis Grizzlies @ Toronto Raptors

Tuesday, Feb. 23
7:30 p.m. ET – Nashville Predators @ Toronto Maple Leafs

Wednesday, Feb. 24
7:30 p.m. ET – Minnesota Timberwolves @ Toronto Raptors

Monday, Feb. 29
7:30 p.m. ET – Tampa Bay Lightning @ Toronto Maple Leafs

Wednesday, March 2
7:30 p.m. ET – Utah Jazz @ Toronto Raptors

Thursday, March 3
7:30 p.m. ET – Tampa Bay Lightning @ Ottawa Senators

Friday, March 4
7:30 p.m. ET – Portland Trail Blazers @ Toronto Raptors

Monday, March 7
7:30 p.m. ET – Buffalo Sabres @ Toronto Maple Leafs

Thursday, March 10
7:30 p.m. ET – Atlanta Hawks @ Toronto Raptors

Monday, March 21
7:30 p.m. ET – Calgary Flames @ Toronto Maple Leafs

Monday, March 21
7:30 p.m. ET – Calgary Flames @ Toronto Maple Leafs

Tuesday, March 22
7:30 p.m. ET – Washington Capitals @ Ottawa Senators

Wednesday, March 30
7:30 p.m. ET – Atlanta Hawks @ Toronto Raptors

Monday, April 4
7:30 p.m. ET – Florida Panthers @ Toronto Maple Leafs

Tuesday, April 5
7:30 p.m. ET – Charlotte Hornets @ Toronto Raptors

Tuesday, April 12
7:30 p.m. ET – Philadelphia 76ers @ Toronto Raptors

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