L.A. Clippers, Fox Sports Prime Ticket Ink New Rights Deal; Will Test ‘Innovative Digital Offerings’
The L.A. Clippers and FOX Sports Prime Ticket today announced an exclusive multi-year broadcast rights agreement between the team and the regional sports network, pending league approval. The terms of the agreement were not announced, but the Los Angeles Times reports the six-year deal (with mutual options to reopen discussions after two seasons) will earn the Clippers around $50 million to $55 million per season — nearly doubling the $25 million annually Prime Ticket paid in the previous deal. The contract announcement also hinted at “in-market tests for new, innovative digital offerings on a trial basis to a targeted number of fans.”
Prime Ticket will broadcast all regular season games not selected by a national broadcaster for exclusive telecast, first-round post-season Clippers games, plus selected pre-season games. All games televised by Prime Ticket will again be made available for streaming on FOX Sports GO to customers with a pay-TV subscription.
Further, the Clippers announced that the team will be conducting in-market tests for new, innovative digital offerings on a trial basis to a targeted number of fans. The announcement did go into specifics regarding said digital offerings, but several media reports over the past week indicated that Clippers owner Steve Ballmer was close to a historic deal to retain the team’s live-streaming rights.
“We are pleased to extend our partnership with the Los Angeles Clippers,” said Henry Ford, Senior Vice President and General Manager, Prime Ticket/FOX Sports San Diego/FOX Sports West. “The Clippers are a world-class organization on and off the court, and we look forward to continuing our relationship.”
“It is exciting for us to continue our relationship with FOX Sports Prime Ticket,” Clippers President of Business Operations Gillian Zucker said. “Our new partnership provides us the ability to pursue Steve Ballmer’s vision of developing revolutionary digital products, while continuing to supply our fans with the comprehensive Clippers coverage and distribution FOX Sports Prime Ticket has provided for over 20 years.”
The 2016-17 season will mark Prime Ticket’s 21st season as regional telecast partner and eighth season as the sole television home for the Clippers. In addition to coverage throughout Southern California, Nevada and Hawaii, all Clippers games will again be available to fans located in the San Diego market on FOX Sports San Diego.