REPORT: Rogers Communications Might Consider Selling TV Rights to Amazon

amazon, report: rogers communications might consider selling tv rights to amazon

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The massive 12-year Canadian broadcasting rights deal that Rogers Communications signed with the NHL does not expire for another two years. But according to sports media insider Jonah Siegel, the cable giant is in talks to air Monday night games — including playoff games — for the next two seasons on Amazon.If so, it could provide a glimpse into what the next media-rights deal could look like.“The implications of such a move extend beyond the realm of sports. Amazon’s interest in securing a foothold in the NHL broadcasting arena speaks volumes about the company’s broader strategy,” Siegel wrote on his YYZ Sports Media site. “With deep ties to the NHL and a robust Prime platform, Amazon is positioning itself to compete head-to-head with industry giants like Walmart and Loblaws, particularly in the fiercely competitive grocery sector.”

Rogers paid $5.2-billion in 2014-15 for exclusive national broadcasting rights to NHL games. But in the years since then, the deal has grown increasingly worse due to cord-cutting and a lack of playoff success from the Toronto Maple Leafs and other Canadian-based teams.

In the second year of the deal, not a single Canadian team qualified for the playoffs. Since then, the Leafs have reached the second round of the playoffs just once, while the Edmonton Oilers have won a combined four rounds. The Montreal Canadiens are the only Canadian team to have reached the Stanley Cup final during this time, but their post-season success has not been sustainable.

That the NHL might prioritize streaming services in its next deal makes sense.

With two more years remaining in the agreement, it’s looking less and less likely that Rogers will renew its contract — potentially creating an opportunity for TSN and/or streaming services to step in and fill the void.

“As anticipation builds for this years playoffs, there is news brewing about the upcoming NHL season, whispers in the sports world hint at a potential game-changing move: Amazon’s potential takeover of the entire Monday night package from Rogers,” wrote Siegel. “While details remain scarce, the murmurs suggest that Rogers, burdened by the weight of the deal, may be looking to offload the Monday night games to the Seattle-based tech giant.”

In 2021, the league signed a seven-year rights agreement worth a combined $625-million with the Walt Disney Company and Turner Sports. Part of that agreement involved streaming up to 75 games per season on ESPN+, Hulu, as well as simulcasting select playoff games on HBO Max.

“This partnership of the world’s top hockey league and the platforms of The Walt Disney Company is a big win for our fans and our game,” NHL Commissioner Gary Bettman said at the time. “Not only will this groundbreaking, seven-year deal enable the NHL to benefit from the incomparable power, reach and influence of The Walt Disney Company and ABC/ESPN, it sets a new standard in delivering our game to the most passionate and tech-savvy fans in sports in the ways they now demand and on the platforms they use.”

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