TNT reportedly making a last-ditch effort for NBA TV rights, saving Inside the NBA

Author:
Sportsnaut

Inside the NBA wrapped up its final episode of the 2023-’24 NBA season in what is currently shaping up to be the penultimate season of the beloved show. However, there’s reportedly a last-second comeback in the works from TNT.

The network, owned by Warner Bros. Discovery, is poised to lose its slot as the second-biggest TV rights partner of the NBA. TNT has been tied to the NBA for decades, broadcasting weekly regular-season matchups and playoff series. However, all of that is tentatively poised to change.

Related: Warner Brothers Discovery exec a ‘major reason’ TNT could lose NBA, Inside the NBA

Under pending TV rights agreements with major networks, the NBA is poised to receive $76 billion over 11 years from ESPN, Amazon and NBC. ESPN would receive the top NBA TV package, with NBC receiving the second-best package and Amazon Prime Video securing excluding streaming rights to the In-Season Tournament and Play-In Tournament beginning with the 2025-’26 season.

With the deals nearly finalized, Inside the NBA was on the doorstep of a farewell season. the end of the show following the 2024-’25 NBA season would mean Charles Barkley leaves the network, with Ernie Johnson remaining at TNT and the futures of their fellow crew uncertain. However, hope isn’t lost.

Related: Where NBA revenue comes from, what networks are paying for NBA TV rights

According to Michael McCarthy of Front Office Sports, Warner Bros. Discovery is negotiating a fourth potential TV rights package with the NBA for TNT. The last-minute effort would include regular-season and potentially even playoff games.

“It’s not over until it’s over. Sources tell me TNT is still at the table for a smaller, less-expensive fourth package that could include regular-season and some playoff games. Another scenario? For the NBA to slice off a package of locally televised games from teams and turn them into national games for TNT, according to Puck”

Michael McCarthy on last-ditch effort to get TNT an NBA TV rights package

Also Read: Best NBA players of all time

As McCarthy notes, the NBA maintaining its relationship with Warner Bros. Discovery would be mutually beneficial. Not only would the league be able to help keep Inside the NBA alive, but it would also sustain its relationship with the network at a time when TNT still operates NBA.com and NBA TV.

A new TV rights contract with the NBA would also mean keeping Charles Barkley, who otherwise could leave TNT if the network loses its rights to NBA games.

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