NBA Pleased With Numbers of New TV Deal
It didn’t take long for the NBA to feel pleased about their brand new television deal.
In just the first season of the massive, brand new $24-billion television contract, the NBA has watched its combined domestic ratings across all networks stay even, relative to last season of course – a big win for the league.
Realistically, numbers are going down for everything on television in an era of DVRs, cord-cutting, and illegal streaming of shows and games, thus making the steadiness of the NBA a victory for Bill Koenig, the league’s president of global media distribution. Taking the presidential race into the account, the NBA hasn’t seen ratings dip this season one bit.
The NBA has also opened up its season going head-to-head with a historic World Series match-up between two cursed franchise – the Chicago Cubs and Cleveland Indians. Still the NBA emerged with what Koenig claimed to be really positive signs.
While the U.S. ratings remained steady throughout the season, the NBA reportedly received a three percent increase in unique viewers as well as a six percent rise in the total hours of game action that fans have watched in a season with more nationally broadcasted games than ever before.
“I think our game is very attractive to the younger, more technologically savvy, multicultural fan. Those numbers are growing over time,” Koenig said in a telephone interview with Jon Krawczynski of The Associated Press. “I also think there is a real emphasis here of promoting our game through traditional means, buying advertising, but also through social media.”
Koenig himself was at the forefront of negotiating the new television deal with Turner and ESPN/ABC, a contract that has flooded the league with revenue this season and thus has blown up the yearly salary cap.
While the NBA should continue to see great numbers under the new deal, Koenig said this is no time for the NBA to stop looking for more ways to improve their product.
“We can’t rest on our laurels,” he said. “We want to evolve. We want to create something that is more compelling for today’s viewer and tomorrow’s viewer.”