The National Hockey League and NBC are officially parting ways.
Long rumored to be the case, word of the split between the NHL and NBC was first reported by the WWE’s Nick Khan during a call last week, and confirmed with word that Turner will be joining ESPN as the league’s TV partners beginning next season. Word of Turner’s involvement was confirmed by The New York Post’s Andrew Marchand on Monday.
Per The Post, Turner will $225 million per season over its seven-year NHL deal, according to sources. And according to Sportsnet’s Elliotte Friedman, the deal will see four of the next seven Stanley Cups on ESPN, with the other three on Turner.
The NHL is expected join a TNT slate of sports entertainment that already includes the NBA, as well as All Elite Wrestling. It also gives Turner three of America’s four major sports, with Major League Baseball games broadcast on TBS.
Overall, this will be first time that Turner, which is based out of Georgia, will air NHL games since the station had the rights to the Atlanta Flames back in the 1970s. The NHL, for what it’s worth, moved out of Atlanta for the second time in league history before the 2011 season, as the Thrashers moved to Winnipeg after 12 years (11 seasons) in Atlanta.
Turner’s involvement adds another interesting wrinkle to the NHL TV rights, too, as it could also lead to HBO Max getting involved with sports for the first time, according to a nugget shared by Marchand.
Turner’s reported NHL victory comes with rumors of CBS and FOX showing potential interest in taking on the second half of the TV rights package, and will net the NHL an average of $635 million per year between the aforementioned $225 million from Turner, and over $400 million from Disney/ESPN.
It will also mark the end of the league’s relationship with NBC, which had been its TV partner since 2005.
Click here for 98.5 The Sports Hub’s complete coverage of the National Hockey League.