After over a month of reports that Sinclair’s Sports Channels are preparing for bankruptcy, including Bally Sports RSNs, earlier this week it finally happened. Now that Bally Sports and all of the Sinclair Sports Channels have declared bankruptcy, they are hoping to use it to get streaming rights to MLB games.
Right now, Bally Sports only has the right to stream MLB games in five markets. ESPN now reports that Bally Sports is hoping that Bankruptcy will help the renegotiate deals to be able to stream MLB games for all 14 MBL teams they have rights to.
Bally Sports was already turned down last fall for the other teams after the MLB didn’t like the deal offered and was concerned over the financial outlook for Bally Sports.
Now though, Bally Sports is hoping that through bankruptcy, they can reach a deal with MLB to bring all 14 teams to Bally Sports+, its $ 19.99-a-month streaming service. This would let fans in those markets stream MLB games in-market without needing a cable TV subscription.
MLB, NHL, and NBA have all said they have plans to stream games if Bally Sports is unable to. MLB is reportedly planning to stream games for free in markets where RSNs fail. For now, though, we will have to wait and see what happens with bankruptcy. Sinclair seems to hope that Bally Sports will be able to renegotiate its debt and keep most, if not all, of its sports rights.It is reported that Sinclairs Diamond sports group has about $585 million cash in hand but owes about $2 billion in fees to teams this year.