$6.99. That’s the newest number in American pro sports. It is the cost of a single out of market basketball game, as NBA Pay Per View is born.
Fans who find themselves in a different city than that of their favorite NBA team now has a variety of options to watch games not covered on national television (the NBA is currently in its second year of a massive 9 year $24 billion media rights deal with ESPN and Turner Sports). In 1994 they debuted NBA League Pass, the basketball equivalent to the NFL Sunday Ticket, which is a cable customer’s ability to purchase a package that carries every single regular season game for a one time price. Starting this season it will be broken down into three ways.
Option 1: NBA League Pass
For the die hardest of hoopheads, standard League Pass remains available for customers for $199.99. Again, that gives the customer access to every single regular season NBA game.
Option 2: Pick a Team, Any Team
Most NBA fans are typically fans of just one franchise and do not need a package that features every single game of every single team. There is an option for that Milwaukee Bucks fan to see Giannis Antetokounmpo and teammates play 82 games from the comfort of his or her couch in San Diego. You can now purchase a full season pass to a single team for $119.99.
Option 3: Single Game Purchase, True NBA Pay Per View
The National Basketball Association has announced that for the first time in the history of the league, you can now purchase any regular season out of market game for a one time cost of $6.99. The game will be sent via broadband for consumption on home computers and handheld devices such as tablets and smartphones. Again, this is for out of market games, meaning the Mavericks fan in Dallas, can not purchase a Maverick game in this manner because of the local television deals a team has with the NBA. But it is interesting. If LeBron James and the Cleveland Cavaliers matchup vs Kevin Durant and the Oklahoma City Thunder and you want to catch the firepower of such a superstar head to head game, it is available to you for seven bucks.
NBA Pay Per View is here. Now we wait and see if the other of the big 4 leagues (NFL, MLB and NHL) will follow suit.