NBC's deal with the NHL expires in 2021.GregParks wrote: ↑Fri Jan 22, 2021 3:49 pm Sports Business Journal reported today that NBCSN is shutting down and moving its major sports (NASCAR, NHL, etc.) to the USA Network. Not sure how serious NBC would've been in bidding on the XFL TV rights, but this seems to take away a potential bidder unless they want to keep compiling sports properties for USA. I guess we'll have to see how USA is able to balance scripted shows/NCIS repeats with sports and if they eventually get rebranded.
But even if the NHL agrees to renew—and given that Comcast owns both NBC and the Flyers, the odds would be better than they otherwise would be—they'd probably handle the major sports on USA the same way TBS handles baseball, TNT handles the NBA or both manage college hoops.
You'd obviously see a major reduction in inventory: no more 90 games a year. Maybe it'd be a Game of the Week setup, possibly Wednesday. Peacock could simulcast the Comcast SportsNet local telecasts.
As for the XFL, well... if Vince still owned the league, USA might be an attractive partner, but obviously he doesn't anymore. But with one less specialized sports outlet needing content at a time of year with a glut of cheaper college sports, it doesn't look that great for the XFL, especially if ESPN picks up the NHL again. They can probably still keep Fox onboard, but replacing ESPN is going to be nearly impossible. If Fox picks up the NHL... it's game over.
You're not going to get the kind of views needed to be viable on Stadium or FTF. (I wouldn't rule out Stadium for the NHL though; Sinclair already owns regional rights to a huge chunk of teams through buying FSN.)