Amazon Exploring Diamond Sports Investment: Report

Amazon, which has been aggressively expanding Prime Video’s live sports offerings, is now in discussions to invest in Diamond Sports Group (DSG), according to a new report.

The Sinclair-owned Diamond group filed Chapter 11 bankruptcy in March to restructure more than $8 billion in debt to investment companies and other creditors by renegotiating rights deals with local teams, but has yet to get a business plan approved.  

The Amazon talks involve a strategic investment and a multi-year streaming partnership, according to a The Wall Street Journal report based on knowledgeable sources.

Diamond operates regional sports networks (RSNs) across the country under the Bally name through a licensing agreement. The networks carry more than 40 Major League Baseball, National Basketball Association and National Hockey League teams, producing approximately 4,500 live regional professional telecasts per year plus locally produced sports events and programs.



It also operates Bally Sports+, a D2C regional sports streaming service, with Roku as a distribution partner.

Amazon would presumably look to make the RSNs' games available via Prime Video. Sources said that Diamond would continue to operate the RSNs through existing partnerships and that Bally Sports Networks would continue on cable. It is not clear how the Bally streaming service might be affected. 

Amazon and Diamond have not commented on the report.

Any potential deal with Amazon would have to be approved by the court, and might help DSG exit Chapter 11.

Diamond has missed making rights payments to several sports leagues and teams while it has been working through restructuring. As a result, some rights have reverted to individual teams and Major League Baseball.

Numerous reports have speculated about how many of its rights obligations DSG will honor in 2024 and beyond. 

Amazon’s string of live sports streaming rights for Prime Video has recently been expanded via agreements with Premier Boxing Champions and NASCAR, among others.

In addition to its groundbreaking deals for the NFL’s Thursday Night and Black Friday football games, Amazon streams New York Yankees and Brooklyn Nets games through its stake in YES Network, and has produced local broadcasts for the WNBA’s Seattle Storm.

Prime Video’s live sports roster in the U.S. also includes NWSL, Overtime Elite and Professional Pickleball Association games.

In addition, the streamer offers the ONE Championship in the U.S. and Canada, Premier League in the U.K., UEFA Champions League football in Germany and Italy, Roland-Garros and Ligue 1 in France, Australian swimming globally; New Zealand Cricket in India, Copa do Brasil football and the NBA in Brazil, and boxing and the 2023 World Baseball Classic in Japan.

Fans can also go through Prime Video Channels to subscribe to sports services including Eurosport, Fox Sports (Mexico), Viaplay Sport, MLB.TV, NBA League Pass, NBA TV, DAZN (Germany and Spain), and Premiere FC (Brazil).

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