NBC Sports Regional Nets 2019 Highlights: Sports Betting, DTC, and Digital Traffic Records
NBC Sports Regional Networks (NBCSRN) ended 2019 with a year of highlights across multiple platforms and initiatives, including record traffic across NBCRSN digital platforms; big primetime ratings for NBC Sports Bay Area, Chicago, and Philadelphia; the relaunch of NBC Sports Chicago; innovative sports-betting related content, and local direct-to-consumer streaming in Portland and Philadelphia.
NBCSRN Digital Platforms Set Traffic Records in 2019
NBCSRN digital platforms, including its six local-market websites and the MyTeams app, combined to deliver more than 900 million page views and 500 million VOD starts in 2019, setting annual records in both categories. In addition, each website earned at least double-digit year-over-year growth among all key digital metrics, including VOD starts. NBC Sports Boston and NBC Sports Northwest set records for the most traffic ever in their respective histories across all key digital metrics, according to digital data from Adobe Analytics.
NBC Sports Bay Area, Chicago, and Philadelphia Top 5 Cable Nets in Primetime
NBC Sports Bay Area, NBC Sports Chicago and NBC Sports Philadelphia all ranked among the Top 5 cable networks in primetime household ratings in their respective markets in 2019. NBC Sports Philadelphia finished the year in first place, while NBC Sports Bay Area finished in second.
Since the NBC Sports Group formed in 2012, NBC Sports Chicago and NBC Sports Bay Area have been among the Top 5 cable networks in primetime household ratings in their respective markets each year, while NBC Sports Philadelphia finished Top 5 in all but one year (2015). NBC Sports Bay Area has been the No. 1 cable network in its market six of the eight years since joining the NBC Sports Group in 2012.
New NBC Sports Chicago Launched on Oct. 1
On October 1, 2019, NBC Sports Chicago relaunched as the new, exclusive local home for every Blackhawks, Bulls and White Sox telecast, a first in Chicago regional sports network history dating back to 1984. The multi-year agreement provides NBC Sports Chicago and NBC Sports Chicago+ as the exclusive regional home for all regular season games, pre-season/spring training, and the first round of postseason coverage for the Bulls and Blackhawks.
NBCSRN and Sports-Betting Related Content
NBCSRN launched multiple sports betting-related initiatives in 2019. On Aug. 5, a live video simulcast of The Daily Line, NBC Sports Radio’s weekday afternoon drive show focused on sports betting and other leading topics, launched on TV in six top NBCSRN markets and via streaming nationwide. The Daily Line, which was started by NBC Sports Radio in conjunction with Westwood One on Jan. 2, is hosted by Michael Jenkins, Tim Murray and Sara Perlman, and airs 3 to 7 p.m. ET.
NBC Sports Washington executed the first live predictive-gaming TV experiences surrounding NBA and NFL games in 2019, which were available as alternate telecasts on NBC Sports Washington Plus. An eight-game test of the product, entitled Predict the Game, was presented beginning in January 2019 surrounding the Washington Wizards games. During the 2019 NFL preseason, NBC Sports Washington partnered with the Washington Redskins to develop and produce predictive-gaming telecasts covering all four of the team’s NFL preseason games. NBC Sports Washington is now presenting a full-season schedule of weekly Wizards Predict the Game experiences during the 2019-20 NBA regular season, which feature $500 in prizes each quarter for a total of $2,000 at stake per game.
NBC Sports Philadelphia also created an alternative sports betting-focused telecast this year, NBC Sports BetCast, which debuted in April during one Philadelphia 76ers regular-season game and one playoff game. The experience, which includes audio from a trio of sports-betting experts, was enhanced for the 2019-20 season to feature expanded sports-betting data and other information during a 10-game 76ers schedule on NBC Sports Philadelphia+.
NBCRSN DTC Streaming: Relaunching NBC Sports Gold’s Blazers Pass and Philly Pass
The NBCSRNs relaunched NBC Sports Gold’s Blazers Pass for a third season, allowing fans residing in Portland Trail Blazers territory to stream 12 Blazers road games during the 2019-20 NBA season.
In Philadelphia, Philly Pass returned to serve displaced Philadelphia sports fans residing outside the NBC Sports Philadelphia territory with pregame and postgame shows covering more than 200 Philadelphia Eagles, Phillies, Flyers and Sixers games, along with original content and specials.
The passes are part of NBC Sports Gold’s suite of direct-to-consumer live streaming products for desktop, mobile, tablets and connected TV devices, powered by NBC Sports’ Playmaker Media.