LONDON, Oct. 15, 2018 – The National Basketball Association (NBA) and Sky Sports today announced a new four-year broadcast and multiplatform partnership that will see Sky Sports become the NBA’s exclusive broadcast partner and official website operator in the UK and Ireland. As part of the NBA’s most extensive UK and ROI partnership ever, Sky Sports will broadcast extensive season-long games and programming including more than 170 live games and a record number of live weekend primetime games starting from 8.30pm UK time.
The partnership will also see live games and highlights of the WNBA (Women’s National Basketball Association) starting with the 2019 season that tips off in May.
Sky Sports will also become the NBA’s new online destination for fans in the UK with extensive video highlights, news, stats, scores and original digital content, enabling fans to stay connected to the game whenever, wherever they are.
The NBA’s 73rd regular season tips off on Tuesday, Oct. 16, 2018 with Sky Sports Main Event airing the opening-night doubleheader featuring the Philadelphia 76ers visiting the Boston Celtics and the defending NBA Champion Golden State Warriors hosting the Oklahoma City Thunder starting at 01.00am. An additional highlight of the 2018-19 season sees the New York Knicks take on the Washington Wizards at The O2 as part of the NBA London Game 2019 presented by Norwegian. Tickets for the NBA’s ninth regular-season game in London, broadcast live on Sky Sports, go on general sale on Friday, Oct. 19 at 9 a.m. BST at www.axs.com/nbalondon.
“We are thrilled to be partnering with Sky Sports in the UK and Ireland,” said NBA EMEA Vice President, Global Media Distribution, Elsa Memmi. “With a record number of weekend primetime games, a season-long schedule of live games and programming, and extensive highlights available online and on mobile, Sky Sports will be the true home of the NBA for fans.”
“This is great news for our customers and for NBA fans in the UK and Ireland,” said Sky Sports Managing Director Barney Francis. “We’re partnering with a really exciting sport that has a fascinating history and an even more compelling future. With some of the biggest stars in world sport we know the NBA will bring drama and entertainment to our customers week after week, available across our many different platforms.”
As a taste of things to come, fans will be able to experience 48-hours of continuous NBA action on a special Sky Sports Arena takeover starting on Tuesday, Oct. 16 at 6.00am featuring archived ‘Classic Games’ and specialized programming. The Philadelphia 76ers vs Boston Celtics and Golden State Warriors vs Oklahoma City Thunder games will also be simulcast on Sky Sports Arena starting at 01.00am.
Sky Sports Mix, available to all Sky TV customers at no extra cost, will show one match every week with full season coverage across Sky Sports Action, Sky Sports Arena, Sky Sports Main Event and Sky Sports News, Sky will become the true home of the NBA in the UK NBA fans will also be able to access the action contract-free through NOW TV, with passes for Sky Sports access starting at £7.99.
Coverage will include an average of five live games per week during the 2018-19 regular season including 42 games in primetime as part of the league’s NBA Saturdays’ and NBA Sundays’ Europe-wide weekend primetime initiative. Additionally, Sky Sports will broadcast four back-to-back games on Christmas Day from 5pm local time, totaling over 10 hours of live coverage. Fans can also look forward to marquee year-round events including NBA All-Star, the NBA Playoffs, the NBA Conference Finals, The NBA Finals, the NBA Draft, as well as NBA Hardwood Classic games.
For more information, fans can visit Facebook.com/nbauk, follow @NBAUK on Twitter and @NBAEurope on Instagram. Fans can download the NBA App for news, updates, scores, stats and videos and can download the new ‘e-calendar’ direct to their phones with full broadcast tune-in information here.
For more information about Sky Sports viewers can visit www.skysports.com
Season-long Games and Programming:
– 170+ Live games and Classic Games
– Christmas Day Games
– NBA London Game 2019
– NBA All-Star 2019
– NBA Playoffs
– NBA Finals
– 42 Live Primetime Games
– NBA Action highlight show
– Live WNBA games
Extensive digital /mobile highlights:
– Individual Game recaps
– Fast Break (daily round up)
– Nightly Top 10
– Daily Zap
– Courtside Countdown (Top Plays of the Week)
– Game previews and unique editorial content
– Comprehensive scores, stats, team schedules and standings
– WNBA highlights
Key Primetime game highlights (UK times):
Week 7: Phoenix Suns @ Los Angeles Lakers (Sunday, Dec. 2, 8.30 p.m.) – The Suns featuring 2018 No. 1 Draft Pick Deandre Ayton taking on LeBron James and the new-look Los Angeles Lakers.
Christmas Day: Milwaukee Bucks @ New York Knicks; Oklahoma City @ Houston Rockets; Philadelphia 76ers @ Boston Celtics; Los Angeles Lakers @ Golden State Warriors (Tuesday, Dec. 25, from 5.00pm) – some of the biggest names battle it out on Christmas Day
Week 14: Oklahoma City Thunder @ Philadelphia 76ers (Saturday, Jan. 19, 8.30 p.m.) – Russell Westbrook, Paul George and the Thunder go head-to-head with the 76ers featuring Joel Embiid and 2017-18 Kia NBA Rookie of the Year, Ben Simmons.
Week 17: San Antonio @ Utah (Saturday, Feb. 9, 10.00 p.m.) – The reigning Defensive Player of the Year Rudy Gobert and the Jazz host DeMar DeRozan and his new team the Spurs.
Week 20: Houston Rockets @ Boston Celtics (Sunday, Mar. 3, 8.30p.m.) – The 2018 Western Conference Finalist Rockets with reigning Kia MVP James Harden and new acquisition Carmelo Anthony and face off against Kyrie Irving, Jayson Tatum and the Celtics.
Sky is Europe’s leading entertainment company, serving 23 million customers across seven countries – UK, Ireland, Germany, Austria, Italy, Spain and Switzerland. The company had annual reported revenues of £12.9 billion in 2016/17, and is Europe’s leading investor in television content with an annual programming spend of around £7 billion.
From exclusive partnerships with HBO, Showtime and Warner Bros. to Sky Original Productions, Sky offers the best and broadest range of content along with the best viewing experience to suit each and every customer. Whether that’s through the multi-award winning next generation box, Sky Q, or Sky’s contract-free online streaming service, NOW TV, customers have access to the latest movies, drama, sports and kids’ entertainment wherever and whenever they like. This is all supported by Sky’s best in class customer service.
Sky’s success is not just based on what the company does but how it does it. Three new major commitments have been launched for Sky’s corporate campaign Sky Ocean Rescue; the reduction of our own single-use plastics by 2020; an investment fund of £25 million over five years in technology solutions; and support of marine protected areas across our markets.
Sky has over 31,000 employees and is listed as one of The Times Top 50 employers for women, as well as being recognised in the Stonewall list of Top 50 LGBT-inclusive employers. Sky is listed on the London Stock Exchange (SKY).
About the NBA
The NBA is a global sports and media business built around four professional sports leagues: the National Basketball Association, the Women’s National Basketball Association, the NBA G League and the NBA 2K League. The NBA has established a major international presence with games and programming in 215 countries and territories in 50 languages, and merchandise for sale in more than 100,000 stores in 100 countries on six continents. NBA rosters at the start of the 2017-18 season featured 108 international players from a record 42 countries and territories. NBA Digital’s assets include NBA TV, NBA.com, the NBA App and NBA League Pass. The NBA has created one of the largest social media communities in the world, with 1.5 billion likes and followers globally across all league, team, and player platforms. Through NBA Cares, the league addresses important social issues by working with internationally recognized youth-serving organizations that support education, youth and family development, and health-related causes.